How can I check my civil online?

Action against hatred: civil courage on the Internet

“Germany's 10 most successful business women” is written on the cover of a magazine that a young woman is watching in a video. In itself a pleasant topic - but the mood quickly changes: "Actually, you are only there thanks to the quota crap!", Sounds the first "Troll". More people get involved, the situation escalates. What is shown in the video happens every day in internet forums and social networks: People are insulted, threatened and despised - often because of their gender, their origin, their religion or their sexual orientation. While other “trolls” usually jump in for the perpetrators, the victims often remain alone. But it doesn't have to be that way: On the “Zivile Heroes” platform, the Police Crime Prevention of the Federal States and the Federal Government (ProPK) provides information on correct behavior in the event of hate online, in violent situations and in the event of radicalization. The platform was developed in the project "PRÄDISIKO - Preventive Digital Security Communication", which is funded by the Federal Ministry of Research.

Videos are entertaining door openers

With the platform, the police are breaking new ground in crime prevention: They focus on entertainment, games, information - and, above all, dialogue with the population. "The videos are the entertaining door openers, so that everyone can deal with moral courage in the case of hatred on the Internet," says the Stuttgart media scientist Gabriele Kille, who coordinates the project. The main target group are young people in social networks. The “civil heroes” are therefore on the move in addition to their website on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Jodel.

Help without playing the hero

“In our experience, most people want to help others in serious situations. With the new video about hate online, we show them how they can help without playing the hero, ”says Harald Schmidt, head of the ProPK. In a quiz, users can intervene in the chat themselves. Only those who act correctly can defuse the explosive atmosphere. "It is important that everyone knows how to react in an emergency - to protect themselves and others," says Schmidt. Those who cannot or do not want to go to a moral courage course have the opportunity to test the correct behavior in a playful way.

What should be done if there is hatred on the Internet?

1. Intervene / counter-speech
Messages of hatred should not go unchallenged: object to it - with examples, facts and verified sources.
2. Document
Save the hate comment - ideally as a screenshot with the date and time.
3. Report / Display
Report hate comments on appropriate complaint pages. Criminal content should be reported to the police.

In addition to hatred on the Internet, the “civil heroes” are dedicated to the issues of radicalization and violence in public spaces. In the violence video, the users themselves determine the outcome of the story. Only those who act at lightning speed can prevent a young couple from falling victim to thugs in the parking garage. In this way, the helpers are shown the consequences of their actions. The interactive video on radicalization will be released on March 12th.