Crossing out bullying

  • PopPress
  • April 18, 2016
  • StopPress Team
Crossing out bullying

Over 450,000 Australian children were victims of cyber bullying in 2013, and now the online tool Reword is taking a stand.

Developed with Headspace, and Australian national youth mental health foundation, Reword acts as a spell checker to prevent online bullying behaviour.

It works by striking out insults with a red line as they are typed, to encourage the writer to reconsider what they are saying before pushing it or sending it.

According to Reword, 80 percent of kids are willing to change what they have written when they see the red line.

In an effort to eliminate online bullying, the creators of Reword want to see it built into every social media and mobile device in the future.

As well as creating the spell checker like app, the tool is also drawing support in the form of Facebook profile pictures. In the same way people changed their pictures to support Paris following the terrorist attacks, and causes like breast cancer and gay rights, Reword is encouraging people to make their profiles black with a red line across the middle.

So far 1,381 people shown their support.

The tool is also similar to one by Auschwitz-Birkenau Memorial and Museum, created earlier this year in celebration of the 71st anniversary of the camp's liberation. The app, called Remember, corrects collective memory errors surrounding the second world war.

It works to remind people that there were no Polish death camps, only German Nazi concentration and extermination camps, by eliminating the expressions “Polish Death Camps” or “Polish Extermination Camps” in both future and past pieces of writing.

Like Reword, it detects any use of the incorrect phrases and underlines them. To help the writer, it offers alternative and correct solutions.

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