Instagram cyber bullying in Ottawa gets shut down

The way high school kids are bullying each other these days makes Tina Fey’s “Mean Girls” trite in comparison.

An Instagram page slandering teen girls in the capital has been shut down following police involvement.

The page, 613gahbas, was deleted Wednesday. ‘Gahba’ is Arabic slang for whore, slut, b—h, or prostitute.

Instagram is a social network and application for Apple and Android users, allowing them to share photos.

The page featured dozens of photos of teens paired with vile captions.

“F—-d the whole team while she had a boyfriend…gahba,” reads an image obtained by the Sun.

“Biggest slut. Crooked teeth. Ugly as hell. She’s jelous (sp) of everyone. And did anal with alex…gahba,” reads another.

It’s unknown how many people are behind the page, which went viral last month.

Thanks to intrasexual competition “it is girls who typically suppress other girls,” said University of Ottawa professor Dr. Tracy Vaillancourt, Canada Research Chair in children’s mental health and violence prevention.

“My first impression was that it was going to be girls that were doing this and then my second thought was that it could also be perpetrated by boys or men who have a philosophical orientation that is more stifling of girls’ rights.”

Speaking of which, a stream of comments on Twitter using the same hashtag either support or denounce the page.

“The good girls didn’t end up on 613 gahbas, so if you’re on there then you either need to work on yourself or your image #straightup,” wrote one boy.

“Who ever made the 613gahbas page on Instagram. Have some respect and get a life!!! What if that was ur sister?,” wrote another.

More than 30% of teens in Canada are victims of bullying at school, according to Vaillancourt’s research, and among this group, 10% experience daily bullying by students at their school, resulting in over 425,000 students tormented each day.

Across city high schools, “I would say it’s reported several times a month,” said Ottawa police Sgt. Norm Sandre.

Last fall, eight girls in London, Ont. were arrested and charged with criminal harassment for targeting another student.

This was shortly after the death of Amanda Todd in British Columbia.

Todd took her own life following years of vicious bullying, first posting a YouTube video chronicling the abuse.

Vaillancourt said she applauds police for taking the page down.

kelly.roche@sunmedia.ca

Twitter: @ottawasunkroche

http://www.ottawasun.com/2013/04/04/instagram-cyber-bullying-in-ottawa-gets-shut-down

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