New study shows how much men are harassed online

A NEW study released today by Norton has revealed more than three-quarters of Australian men under thirty, and more than half of all men, have experienced some form of online harassment.

When talking about types of online harassment, the study included a range from abuse and insults (34 percent), trolling and malicious gossip (29 percent), as well as rumour-mongering (27 percent).

Mark Gorrie, Director, Norton Business Unit, Pacific region, Symantec said the research uncovers the prevalence of harassment against men in the online world and reveals that online harassment is an everyday trial for specific members of our community.

"The Norton survey reveals there are some risk factors that make some men more vulnerable to online harassment than their other male counterparts. Men from minority religious beliefs are attacked because of their faith in 31 percent of cases; gay, bisexual and transgender men are targeted because of their sexual orientation in 23 percent of cases, compared with seven percent of heterosexual men; and men with disabilities are attacked because of their physical or intellectual disabilities in 14 percent of cases," Gorrie said.

"The survey findings indicate that many Australian men apply the 'she'll be right' attitude towards their negative online experiences. Most men ignore (41 percent), block (33 percent) or unfriend (21 percent) perpetrators, but this approach doesn't address the emotional impact these experiences may have.

"Ten percent of men indicated they felt powerless to do anything, 10 percent reported the activity to the police, and only seven percent sought legal advice."

Online crossed into real life in two interesting areas. About three percent of men resorted to physical violence and five percent threatened physical violence in response to online harassment.

A third of men (33 percent) who had experienced threats of violence and death also revealed these incidents had extended into the offline world.

One in five men (22 percent) who had experienced threats of violence and death reported depression and 17 percent of these cases prompted police involvement.



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