A MUM-OF-TWO who has been a victim of online bullying has written a first hand account of the damage it can do and why we should all be kinder to each other.

The mum, who lives in the borough, has chosen to remain anonymous, but was compelled to share her story following the death of TV presenter Caroline Flack, who had been the victim of online abuse.

In an emotional statement, the mum wrote: “Someone ended their life last weekend. They were my age, they had lots of friends and family and people they cared about and yet it still happened.

“Like anyone, they made mistakes and were not perfect. No one will ever know what made her make that decision, but having seen the intense, hateful articles, posts, memes and columns about her recently one can only come to the conclusion that it didn’t help and there was no escape from it.

“Last year, I was the victim of an online hate campaign.

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“I still don’t know who was behind it and I still don’t know why.

“My name, face and details were shared online. I was accused of various things that made no sense and were not true.

“Every day there would be a barrage of new posts, manipulated screen shots, fake account upon fake account and posts pretending to be of me, photos of my children were shared - all very strange, all very menacing and threatening but all very much within the law.

“With simple tweaks, they ensured that no offence was made, meaning that they could not be sanctioned for it.

“Frustrated, I used the report function on Facebook only to be told that what was happening to me was not breaching community standards, so the posts remained published and multiplied.

“I was menacingly told via a post that the more I reported, the more they would post. They set up Facebook pages instead of accounts, so that they couldn’t be blocked.

“I went to the police. The police could make no sense of it as they were not a clear enough threat, so the police couldn’t do anything. And even if they wanted to, they didn’t know who it was because they hid behind fake profiles using my name.

“I was told ‘We can’t police social media’ That was it.

“These people were sitting back quietly terrorising me , safe with their anonymity and there was nothing I could do about it.

“I am ashamed to stay that I went from feeling frightened to feeling incredibly worthless and a burden to those around me.

“I felt like people no longer wanted to be associated with me because I was damaged goods and they’d become targets by association.

“I began to think that the only way out of this was to not be here at all.

“I had one last go at getting people to listen. I told Facebook that their lack of action was driving me to feeling this way and I begged my MP to help.

“They agreed. What was happening wasn’t kind, or right but there were serious gaps in the law.

“Social media is still relatively new so there’s not much in place to protect people – yet it rules nearly everyone’s lives.

“The accounts were closed, it has stopped, but the culprits weren’t found, they weren’t sanctioned – they have just simply moved on to terrorise their next victim.

“I doubt Caroline Flack is the first person to suffer the poisonous side of social media, but let’s make her the last. Let’s find a way to protect people and until then, lets just be kinder to each other.

“We don’t all have to get on and agree with each other, but please, at least be decent.”