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Title: Online Harassing in Chinese Societies – Association among Harassing Behaviors, Misinformation and General Prevalence

Abstract: This Online harassment has become a popularized form of assault in China and has caused many traumas to the current generation; however, research of online harassment in China is still in an early stage. In this study, we aimed to observe the prevalence of online harassment in Chinese mainland, and to examine the association between harassing behaviors and relevant offensive behaviors. Our topics and discussions mainly focused on fake information and related impacts. We recruited 959 participants who are Chinese citizens in different age groups located in different parts of Chinese mainland. They were asked to completed an online questionnaire consisted of 29 multiple-choice questions designed by the Pew Research center with the SRBI inc. in September 2020. Data of participants’ personal harassing experience and opinions toward certain behaviors were collected, with several nominal factors such as gender presented. In this study, 94.68% (n=908) of the participants reported that they have been harassed online, and 5.32% (n=51) reported that they never had such experience. Specifically, purposeful embarrassment was the most common form of online harassing behaviors, with ~18% (n=333) of the victims reported. Besides, 63.92% of the participants reported that others have posted fake information about them on the Internet, with the majority of the fake information focused on victim’s reputation and job performance. In addition, no association was found between phone usage and the possibility of having someone post misinformation of users. Online harassment is a common experience of Chinese citizens, as many reported that they had such experience. Our study complemented on the researches of online harassment in Chinese mainland, and emphasized the urgent need for more regulations and policies to prevent online harassment.

B. Liu, and Y. Ke, “Online Harassing in Chinese Societies – Association among Harassing Behaviors, Misinformation and General Prevalence,” 7th International Symposium on Social Science (ISSS 2021), 2021, pp. 68-78, DOI: 10.26914/c.cnkihy.2021.004323.