ITV tackles online trolling with increased support to show participants
Acteon is delighted to have collaborated with ITV on an important new Social Media Awareness Hub, launched in April 2023.
The hub is designed to help all participants on ITV-produced or commissioned shows deal with trolling online, as part of an ongoing commitment to duty of care for participants of ITV shows.
Developed by ITV's Duty of Care specialists and ITV Studios Director of Unscripted Production, Helen Killeen, and drawing on Acteon’s expertise in digital learning and communication campaigns, the hub provides practical advice on how to navigate unwanted attention from social media, if it happens following their appearance. The advice includes how to handle hurtful comments, manage online privacy and where to get further support.
The launch of the hub is in addition to the existing support offered to show participants which include measures to ensure they are fully supported before, during and after the filming period. For example, in Series 9 of Love Island participants were asked to pause handles and accounts on their social media platforms for the duration of their time on the show, with accounts remaining dormant while they were in the villa.
Online trolling is an increasingly common issue. New research commissioned by ITV shows that almost one-third of UK adults aged 16+ have received some form of negative comments online, with this increasing significantly for 16-34s. Posting negative comments online has become so normalised that over half (51%) of adults aged 16+ say that if people “don’t want to receive negative comments, they shouldn’t post on social media.”
The training materials are part of a wider initiative by ITV to tackle online abuse, with a new behaviour change campaign, “Would you say it?”. This campaign aims to reach audiences who don’t necessarily see themselves as causing harm to stop posting hurtful comments online by understanding the real-world impact of their comments.
Susie Braun, Director of Social Purpose at ITV said:
“So much of our lives are now spent online so it’s important to think about our mental wellbeing there too. Trolling dressed up as ‘banter’ is having a real impact on lives beyond the screen.”
The Social Media Awareness Hub can be found here: socialmediaawarenesshub.itv
Further information on the advertising campaign is available at www.wouldyousayit.itv
This campaign is part of ITV’s Social Purpose, which since 2019 has focused on mental wellbeing, through campaigns such as Britain Get Talking supported by Mind, YoungMinds and SAMH, and ITV2’s #WhatGetsYouThrough in collaboration with CALM. The impact of trolling on mental health is significant, with wider research showing that 41% of people who experienced cyberbullying went onto develop social anxiety.
- Date: January 2023
- Sample: 1,001 adults aged 16+
- Conducted by: YouGov
- Almost one-third of UK adults aged 16+ have received some form of negative comments online
- 16-34s are around four times more likely to say that they have been trolled (harassed or treated negatively) by someone they didn’t know online compared to those aged over 55.
- 93% of adults aged 16+ agree that people say things online that they would never say in real life
- Over half (51%) of adults aged 16+ say that if people “don’t want to receive negative comments, they shouldn’t post on social media.”