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From cyberbullying to hate speech: hotlines at a glance

3 minutes reading time
3-17 years
Social Media

Cyberbullying, harassment, extremist content – some app and social network operators can delete images and other content if it is brought to their attention. A crucial step in this direction is reporting online problems. This article introduces hotlines.

Why is reporting important?

Reporting problematic behavior or content enables the responsible institutions and organizations to act quickly and protect your child. By reporting, you can help prevent similar incidents in the future, for example by removing a shocking video. In some cases, problematic online behavior can have criminal consequences. Reporting such incidents can help ensure that perpetrators are held accountable.

What can you report?

Some of the most common types of online problems that should be reported:

  • Cyberbullying: Cyberbullying involves repeated harassment, threats, or insults on the Internet. This can occur on social media, via email, text messaging, or other online platforms.
  • Harassment: Online harassment can take several forms, including sexual harassment, racist or discriminatory comments, stalking, or unwanted messages.
  • Violence in the media: There are age restrictions for depictions of violence in the media, which are regulated by the protection of minors in the media. Films and computer games are given age labels to make it clear that the content depicted is only suitable for children over a certain age.
  • Hate speech and extremist content: Content that promotes hate, violence or extremism should be reported to curb the spread of such ideas.
  • Sexual violence against minors: If you come across content that contains sexually explicit images or videos of minors, you should report it immediately, as it is a serious crime.
  • Identity Theft: If you suspect that your personal information has been stolen or that someone is misusing your identity online, this is a serious issue that should be reported.
  • Violations of usage policies: Many online platforms have usage policies that prohibit certain behaviors. Violations of these rules should be reported so that the platforms can take action.
  • Radicalization or self-harm: If you see evidence of radicalizing content or content for self-harm or suicide, it is important to report it to potentially save lives.


You can always report a problem directly in the app where it occurs. For example, if it violates the usage policy, threatens security, or harasses. Or when it is urgent and requires immediate action. Reporting in the app enables faster response and action from app administrators. To do this, look for an option like “Report,” “Send feedback,” or “Help” – these are often located in the app’s settings or menu.

In addition, there are official hotlines set up specifically to report problematic online behavior:

Help with stress online: juuuport.de

Young people can report problematic content such as hate speech or extremist comments to the contact point. The website also offers information and advice on communication risks such as cyberbullying and sexual harassment. Young scouts offer online advice via contact form and messenger on stress on the Internet, dealing with beauty images, media addiction and much more.

Pornography, depictions of violence or hate speech: FSM Complaints Office

The FSM is an institution concerned with the protection of children and young people in the media. The FSM’s complaints office enables parents and other users to report problematic content on the Internet. The complaints office examines the reports and can take action to stop the dissemination of problematic content if necessary.

Violations of youth protection regulations: jugendschutz.net

This government agency deals with the protection of minors from harmful media in Germany. Here you can report violations related to content harmful to minors. The website provides clear guidance and advice on how to report problematic content. In addition, jugendschutz.net informs about current developments in the field of youth media protection.

Illegal content: Internet Complaint Center

The Internet Complaint Center is a central point of contact for reporting illegal content on the Internet, especially in connection with child sexual abuse. It works closely with the relevant law enforcement agencies to remove such content and prosecute offenders.

What should parents do?

Familiarize yourself with the various reporting options. Do not hesitate to take advantage of them. Educate your child about potential conflicts online. Encourage it to tell you about problems. Use parental control settings and programs.

Keep an eye on your child’s online activities and stay in the loop so you can respond to problems early.

In addition, if you feel overwhelmed or unsure about how to deal with certain online issues, you can seek counseling services. There are some counseling services for youth and parents. The number against sorrow offers, for example, a youth counseling service and a parents’ hotline for problems such as excessive demands, worries or parenting problems.

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