Between praise and (cyber)bullying: rating platforms on the web

Whether with a "like" or a "like", a comment or an entire review - on the Internet, users can express their opinions quickly and anonymously. You can rate just about anything: your last hotel visit, your favorite restaurant and even individual people. On platforms like Tellonym, Sarahah, or YouTube, people anonymously comment on others. In addition to compliments, insulting remarks can also be found there.

Many young people use such offers to get feedback. Saying something nice to someone feels good and also gives the other person pleasure. On anonymous platforms, users can give others compliments or make confessions that they would not dare to make in real life. But many users are also confronted with bullying and harassment.

Anonymity makes people brave - and often mean

Because anonymity also has its downsides. It is easier to make insults or threats. Also, lewd comments or sexual harassment often occur under the (supposed) protection of anonymity. However, users should not put up with this!

The information portal gives young people tips on how they can protect themselves from bullying or defend themselves against it.

Tips for young people from

  • If you are being bullied, threatened or harassed, block and report the user.
  • Report nasty messages and delete them. It's best not to respond to offensive or inappropriate comments at all: hopefully the haters will get bored quickly!
  • Pay attention to what you answer. On some sites your answers are completely public. Don't reveal too much about yourself and be careful not to hurt or offend anyone! That way, you have the most leverage against the perpetrators.
  • In the worst case, you can press charges. Even if the users are supposedly anonymous, the police can find out who sent the messages via the IP address. Take screenshots of the insults/harassment as evidence.
  • More tips against (cyber)bullying and (cyber)grooming on
  • If you have web worries, you can contact the number against sorrow (Tel.: 116111) or Juuuport.

Anonymous feedback apps "Tellonym" and "Sarahah"

A currently popular app is Tellonym, where users can anonymously post reviews. Registered users receive a personal link that they can send to friends. These then provide feedback in the form of so-called "tells". Particularly critical: If you reply to these tells, they become publicly visible! Users of Tellonym should therefore change the settings at "profile in search findable" to "no". Young people should also pay attention to whom they send the link or whose opinion they are really interested in.

Very similar to Tellonym is the app Sarahah, which is currently at the top of the download lists in many countries and also allows anonymous "feedback" and thus also offensive comments under the protection of anonymity. With Sarahah, too, the account default setting is public, so users of the app have to set their account to "private" to protect their privacy.

This news article was published in cooperation with the youth portal

Further information