Instagram launches anti-bullying campaign with Cybersmile

Instagram has teamed up with anti-cyberbullying non-profit Cybersmile for another year to launch a campaign for Anti-Bullying Week.

The ‘Banter or Bullying? No Offence’ campaign follows on from last year’s ‘Banter or Bullying?’ campaign. This time, entertainer Chunkz, doctorand presenter Dr. Radha Modgil, and social media personalities Chessie King, Holly H, and Olimata are all calling out bullying online.

Chunkz has dropped an ‘anti-diss track’ on Instagram, TikTok, and Snapchat; Holly H is showing why ‘no offence, but…’ comments won’t phase her on Instagram Reels; Dr. Radha Modgil is providing personal advice on how to deal with cyberbullying and how to spot when banter goes too far; Olimata has shared a personal public service announcement for those who have ever used ‘no offence, but…’ to mask a hurtful comment; and more.

The campaign launch coincides with the release of a report from Cybersmile and Instagram which found that 65 percent of 13- to 18-year olds in the UK believe terms like ‘banter’ and ‘no offence, but…’ are being used to mask bullying behaviour, both on and offline.

The survey of 3,003 teens also revealed that 83 per cent of young people have seen someone left upset by ‘banter’. And 75 per cent of teens agree that people are more likely to take it too far when talking online.

Meanwhile, 68 per cent have been hurt by a comment which started with ‘no offence but…’. However, 33 per cent find it difficult to talk to friends and family about their personal boundaries when this happens.

“This research demonstrates that a majority of young people are aware of their own personal boundaries and how subtle nuances in conversation can be used to disguise bullying or affect the way that communication is perceived,” said Dan Raisbeck, Co-founder of Cybersmile. “We believe it is vital to educate and encourage young people to make use of the features and tools available to them to control their online experience, and maintain their digital wellbeing.”