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Ask.fm Promises to Introduce Harassment Button After Teen Suicides

ask.fm changes

After the social networking website Ask.fm was implicated in a number of teen suicides, it has finally agreed to make some changes. The website announced today that it would introduce a report bullying or harassment button that would compel the website to investigate reported comments.

Ask.fm, which allows people to post anonymous questions and comments on a person’s profile, is often utilized by cyber bullies who abuse the site’s anonymity feature to post insulting, harassing or crude comments.

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After three female journalists in the UK were threatened with bomb scares, Twitter responded to the surge in sexist attacks with updated abuse features — sparking a vicious war of words between feminists and hacktivists.

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hannah smith suicide

(Facebook)

One such bullied teen was 14-year-old Hannah Smith from Lutterworth, England. Smith was being routinely bullied on her Ask.fm page and hanged herself in he early hours of August 2.

Ciara Pugsley, Erin Gallagher, Jessica Laney, and Josh Unsworth were other teens who made headlines after bulling on Ask.fm contributed to their suicides.

In a statement made today, Ask.fm said:

At Ask.fm we want our users to be able to have fun, share information, make friends and express themselves freely…We also want them – particularly our younger users – to be able to do this in a safe environment.

The report abuse/harassment button is expected to go live in September.

Businesses Pull Advertising From Ask.fm in Protest Over Teen Suicides

Following the suicide of 14-year-old Hannah Smith, companies have begun pulling advertising in protest of Ask.fm, including Specsavers, Vodafone, the Save the Children charity, and Laura Ashley.

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