What is trolling (cyber-bullying)

‘Trolling’ (also known as cyber-bullying) is an Internet slang term. It refers to people who deliberately use highly offensive, indecent, threatening or false language to upset or offend another person on the Internet.


People who take part in ‘trolling’ are referred to as ‘trolls’. They operate anywhere on the Internet where they are able to post public comments. This includes blog sites, social networks (such as Facebook pages and Twitter streams), news sites, discussion forums, and game chat.

Trolling has increased in recent years, possibly because the troll believes they can hide their real identity behind ‘usernames’ making them untraceable.

Supporters argue trolling is about freedom of speech. However, for some, the ferocity and personal nature of the abuse causes great distress.

What can I do about trolling or cyber-bullying?

If you are the victim of trolling:

  • Do not respond to the troll
  • Block the troll
  • Change your privacy setting
  • Tell someone such as a family member or a friend
  • Always report the abuse to the social network or site owner
  • Keep a record of any aggressive or intimidating messages, posts, pictures or videos you receive or see
  • If the abuse is really serious – report it to the police

Reporting the abuse

You should report the malicious behaviour to the website being used.

Information on how to report abuse on some of the most popular social networking sites can be found by selecting the links below:


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