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Reword: The online spell checker to strikethrough cyberbullying

With social media becoming an integral part of our lives, cyberbullying is becoming more common, particularly among young people.

In the battle against cyberbullying, Australia’s largest mental health youth organisation, headspace, has teamed up with Leo Burnett Melbourne to create Reword – an online tool that aims to teach young people what is right and what is wrong to type.

As the tool’s website says, “Once an insult is read, the damage is done”, so Reword is stopping these hurtful words from being sent in the first place.

Similar to an online spellchecker, Reword identifies rude and insulting statements. Once the phrase is identified, the hurtful words receive a bright red strikethrough – a none-too-subtle suggestion the user rethink their choice of words.

How Reword works

And just as language – and therefore what may be considered insulting – is fluid, Reword is also a growing tool. Users can add insulting phrases into the ‘Reword dictionary’ to help the spellchecker stay abreast of all hurtful phrases on the internet.

Users can even report abuse via the Reword website if they encounter discriminative or abusive behaviour.

About the author

Pooiee is a freelance writer from Malaysia, currently based in Perth. She is a Journalism and Screen Art Graduate with a background of research into female sexuality. She wants her dog to be famous…

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