According to the news, cyber libel cases are on the rise as victims of online harassment also increases.
Here’s another email inquiry, sharing my response because cyber libel, is an adult victims’ recourse when being cyberbullied.
I have been cyber bullied for about 2 months now. This person has been creating dummy accounts on Facebook and keeps on creating group conversations with my officemates and friends and posts my picture on the group chat with a caption saying I am a whore, gold digger, slut, and a mistress.
This has been happening for 2 months now. I have been reporting these fake accounts to Facebook but this person keeps on creating new one. The fake account sent me a message on Facebook saying he/she will not stop not until my family and my reputation is not destroyed.
Please help. Thank you.
Since you already reported said account(s) to Facebook, and the person is bent on destroying you, your next logical move is to seek legal help.
In the absence of cyberbullying law affecting adults, you can use the cyber libel (online libel) provision of RA 10175 or the cyber crime law. At anytime, you can visit the cyber crime division of either PNP or NBI to discuss your situation.
Please bring with you screenshots of abusive posts, where as much as possible, the url is visible. In addition, if you have friends who can help identify the person, their statements can be of help.
To identify the person behind dummy accounts, our DOJ will coordinate with its counterpart to compel platfomrs to share details behind fake accounts.
Why Cyber Libel
The anti bullying law only cover minors and students, but the cybercrime law included cyber libel as a punishable act per revised penal code. Albeit one degree higher, because the use of social media and the internet amplifies the effect of libel.
For your reference, please look for these elements in the posts that affect you, these are the elements of (cyber) libel.
- Qualifier: The use of the internet
- First Element: There must be a defamatory imputation
- The victim is humiliated or publicly embarrassed
- The victim is vilified, hated, becomes the subject of gossip, nasty stories, suspected of wrongdoings, is avoided
- The victim losses face, becomes a laughing stock, is the object of ridicule
- Second Element: Publicity of the Libelous Matter
- Posting the material in the internet or posting in a bulletin board
- Showing the caricature, or naked picture, of the victim to another
- Third Element: The Person libeled must be identified. (Identity of victim)
- Fourth Element: That there be malice on the part of the accused.Malice is the legal term to denote that the accused is motivated by personal ill-will, spite, hatred, jealousy, anger, and speaks not in response to duty but to do ulterior and unjustifiable harm. The purpose is really to destroy, to injure, to inflict harm.
For details on the case of libel, please read this article.
Hope we are able to help.