Bullying social experiment video captures response of passers-by in US

The campaign was run to show anybody can help put a stop to bullying

Jess Staufenberg
Saturday 24 October 2015 17:44 BST
Some commentators queried whether a boy being bullied would have received the same level of support
Some commentators queried whether a boy being bullied would have received the same level of support

A touching video shows the reactions of strangers as a girl is bullied at a bus stop.

The social experiment by US channel UPTV placed three young actors in a public space and recorded the responses of passers-by.

Two of the girls make comments to one smaller girl such as:

"Do you have any friends at all?", "Are they imaginary?", and "I know a bunch of people [...] and they said they just pretended to be sick so they didn't have to go to your birthday." "

As the video goes on various passers-by step in to stop the bullying.

"This is how you bring people's self-esteem down," says one woman.

"You don't hurt somebody's feelings, and intentionally do it," says another.

Others intervene by taking the girl out of the situation, nodding her to come and sit beside them. One woman offers for her to come and sit on the bus with her, whilst a man gets out his harmonica to show her how to play.

A guy turns to her tormentors and asks: "Do you guys have anything nice to say? You're talking s**t."

A security guard tells the girls, "Quit messing with her."

Commentators below the video have queried whether a victim who was not a young, white girl might have received the same level of support.

One, called Jeremy Stafford, said: "Try this with boys now. Man up, you f****t!"

Another commentator called agreed: "I actually really want them to do this with boys now to know if anyone would actually say this."

In the UK, 50 per cent of young people have bullied another person, and 43 per cent have been bullied - with over half of the latter citing appearance as the main cause of attack, according to a 2015 survey by anti-bullying charity Ditch the Label.

The most likely to be bullied were those with disabilities, LGBT young people and those from low income backgrounds, the survey found.

The campaign by UPTV, called Stand UP Against Bullying, ended the video by saying: "Who will stop the bullying? All of us."

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