I went to log on to Facebook Sunday to share an open letter that I had written, and that’s when I was informed by Facebook that I was still banned from posting for three more days.
Now, I don’t know how long this particular block had lasted because if you don’t log into your Facebook every so many hours, you’re automatically logged out, and the way Facebook implement its bans (when your post gets reported) is that they don’t begin until you log in. So even if you hadn’t logged in for months, when you finally do log in — that’s when your “punishment” starts.
I’ve done some research on this because it still baffles me that 30 something years olds — almost forty year olds — behave like this online. Facebook is set up to favor the abusers. It’s setup to favor the ones doing the harrassing and not the one being harassed. Much like the real law.
This is actually a tool on social media that kids use to bully others. (Never thought I’d see the day where grown-ups are so pathetic to engage in it.)
What they do is simply report somebody’s post or report their pictures for nudity, and since the response is an automated system — the person reported always has their post removed or is issued a temporary block in posting. Now, even though some sort of temporary ban is issued after they remove your post (once it’s been reported for harassment), Facebook allows you to login but you can’t respond. (I guess FB considers that an act of kindness.)
Yes, that means you can still log on and access everyone else’s words, but you can’t respond with any of your own. Which makes it a favorite among those that want to bully because they can talk about their intended victim and they know the person can read it, see it — but they can’t respond back.
Then, once the person gets the right to post again, they then report them to Facebook. Again. And they are issued another ban. Repeat.
Now, once you’ve blocked the person (which I have done, but it’s cute, she hadn’t blocked me she’d only “unfriended” me so she could still attempt to research my name and, I’m sure, report my profile), they can no longer report you.
However, as long as they have a friend or spouse or a mutual acquaintance that they troll your profile with, they can (and do) still report you. Which is why anybody that I know that converses with her (and there are a few) will be automatically blocked. I’ve now had to block two people in my Facebook existence and they’ve both had the same first name, strangely. And it makes me sad to do so. Because we wouldn’t even allow elementary school kids to behave this way, so for grown adults to do it — I find that troubling.
I’ve also found “unfriending” a tool of the cowardly and beneath me. If I have a problem with you or the things that you say, I prefer to tell you. And I damn sure don’t write about you behind your back! I just say it to your internet face, and I don’t care to go back and forth with idiots about what they think about what I think. Never have, never will.
Here’s what else I wanted to say, this all started because I was getting Facebook bullied and when I responded with the truth, she (my harasser) broke her neck to get it off of Facebook because she didn’t want “friends” to see it. (When I reposted it, she reported it again as Facebook “abuse.”) She who had intentionally been copying and posting my personal posts to a public gossip page could not stand when I responded to her on Facebook — couldn’t stand the idea of anybody reading it. And I don’t blame her, I would be humiliated if I acted that skanky and juvenile myself, as well.
But here’s the thing, you’re going to report me to Facebook for responding to being bullied because you don’t want friends to see it, lol, I’ve already called you out by name in the paper, and it’s been on my blog site for the whole www. to see. You’re worried about friends seeing it, ha! I posted it where the whole world can read it. And people who behave this way had better hope that you keep yourself insulated in that town that you feel so safe in behind your phone screen, because if I run into your behind, you’re going to get a show. Internet bullying taking place with juveniles is sad enough, but now I see where they get their behavior – their parents. In our day, bullying meant somebody might come along and put your butt in a headlock. It still does to me.
Bullying is serious. And social media has taken it to another level. Kids kill themselves, overdose, isolate. I will never hate myself so much that I would play nice or overlook anybody attempting to treat me like I’m their internet play toy — treat me like I don’t have a voice or a choice. I always have a choice. And it’s to fight back. And kids, you do too — and that’s my point.
Now, the “adult” thing to do would just probably be to never address this again, just take my penance and go. In fact that’s what some told me when this first happened — who cares, let it go. But see, I don’t work like that. Because people that do this stuff have a pattern, and if we adults don’t fight back against it, what do we expect kids to do? So no, if “adult” means just never acknowledge that other grown adults were trying to bully me and use social media as their cowardly tool, then no, I will never be that adult.
So, if you get unfriended or blocked by me — which I’ve never made a habit of doing to anybody — you will know why. All the posts that have been reported (which was really the same post reported multiple times) in which I responded to her (since she was on my friends list then) and called her by name, unlike her (who was copying and posting my post to a public page behind my back), are on one of my blog sites and I will post links.
I don’t go down like that. I found that life without Facebook is much more productive (which is why I stayed off of it) and I actually have time to read, to write and work on my book — and I’m now working on a piece about bullying, so thanks! But when I actually do attempt to log back on and I’m still having to deal with this stuff, yeah I don’t play nice like that. Not my job to.
And let me say this: These people, these “friends,” that love to run me down behind my back with their little “I hate Candi Mathis” gossip club; those that hate every word I say but stalk my page because they really have no life of their own; and those that worry about every word that rolls off my keyboard when I haven’t given one thought to them; and those who use social media to bully me or gang up on me over my political beliefs because it’s easier than actually reading a book to develop some of their own, should really worry more about things like why they don’t have custody of their kids, why their husbands can’t keep a job, or why they’re drunk in the middle of the day. And less about my words over Barack Obama. But now, isn’t my willingness to say that the reason they’re bullying me in the first place?