Former victim of cyber bullying hopes his story will impact others

Local News

“When I first think about finding a girlfriend, I started getting attacked,” said Jason Plants, a victim of cyberbullying.

With technology being so prominent in today’s world, many people have access to computers or smartphones. In some cases, the internet is used as a way to harass and bully others. 

Jason Plants says not only has he been bullied online, but that there were even fake social media pages made pretending to be him. 

“I didn’t know that the bullying, the bullies were at the time, were pretending to be me. But, I’d never known about it until a friend of mine told me what really happened,” Plants said.

Many people experience cyberbullying on a day-to-day basis. According to a Statista report, 53% of adult online users reported experiencing some sort of online harassment. 

33% said they experienced purposeful embarrassment and 22% said they experienced physical threats. 

“There is always a person tied to something on social media. There is always a person tied to an account, to a photo, to a picture. Especially with memes, when you take somebody’s picture and you turn it into a meme, that’s a real person and that person has feelings,” said Kati Hartwig, social media coordinator at Youngstown State University. 

Plants said the bullying he experienced affected him in a negative way.  

“It made me feel upset, and it made me feel like I didn’t fit in. I was hurt, and my friends and family saw that. They know what kind of person I am, like a loving, caring, honest person,”

Hartwig said it’s important to be a good role model online. 

“That type of behavior reflects to these younger generations that are on social media, so they see this behavior, and they think it’s OK, and they continue to do it,” she said.

You can hear more about Jason Plants’ story on how he was able to overcome cyberbullying and his message to others by clicking here.

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