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With the birth of social media came the birth of online bullying.

And as disheartening as it is to contemplate, it would be virtually impossible to find a prominent online post which doesn't play host to at least one (if not more) disparaging comments or hateful remarks.

Whether you're scrolling YouTube, Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, you will invariably stumble cross content that incites hatred, right?

And what do you generally do? Like most of us, you just keep on scrolling.

But what would happen if the racist, sexist or homophobic remarks made their way offline and presented themselves in front of you while you went about your daily business?

In Real Life is a social experiment that shows what happens when online bullying is taken offline, and brought into the 'real world'.

Using numerous abhorrent remarks which were found online, bullies and victims, who were played by actors, gave the public the chance to intervene in harrowing exchanges.

Take a look here to find out how many actually did…

Oh, and one more thing while we have you! Do't forget that you can catch up on all your favourite shows for free for a month right here, so sign up now!

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Taylor Swift fans, look away now. 

The singer seems to have made a pretty drastic social media decision this morning, as all of her online accounts have been deleted. 

Taylor, who is one of the most followed celebrities in the world, quietly removed herself from social media platforms Twitter, Tumblr and Instagram. 

It is unknown whether or not the singer plans to return after a social media sabbatical, or if she plans on staying gone for good. 

Fans are hoping that this wipe out means that Taylor is planning something big, like a new album.

It worked wonders for Ed Sheeran, after all. 

The official Taylor Swift website has also been blacked out, so it seems likely that Taylor is gearing up to surprise fans with something new. 

The social media sabbatical also comes on the three year anniversary of the release of Shake It Off, and anniversary of the announcement of her latest album 1989.

Whatever you're plotting Tay, we're ready. 

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So, it's kind of a running joke that no one in Ireland can take a compliment.

"Thanks hun, Penneys" and "Eh? Says you" are our go-to responses when anyone dares try to flatter us, usually followed by a self-deprecating comment for good measure.

However, when it comes to social media bragging, us Irish are a cut above the rest.

TK Maxx and Baz Ashmawy have lifted the veil on Ireland's social media bragging habits and the result are pretty interesting.

Research revealed that almost two-thirds of Irish adults use social media as a medium to showcase and celebrate achievements, life events, holidays adventures and even their bargain fashion finds.

In total, 62 per cent of Irish people admitted they had bragged on social media, with 42 per cent doing so in the last three months.

What's more, 11 per cent even admitted to boasting on a weekly basis.

When it come to the way we brag, 77 per cent of those surveyed said they saw social media as an opportunity to celebrate, while less then a quarter (23 per cent) said they bragged to earn validation.

So, what are Irish people most likely to brag about?

In at number one is holidays with 49 per cent.

Next we have pets and/or children (44 per cent), followed closely by major life events such as birthdays and engagements (40 per cent).

Women are more likely to engage in online bragging with 70 per cent admitting they had done so in the past, compared to just 55 per cent of men.

Unsurprisingly, Conor McGregor tops the list of the ultimate Irish braggers. A title he has proved worthy of time and time again.

Speaking on the research results, TV and radio broadcaster, Baz Ashmawy commented, “I think it’s great to see a new confident generation of Irish emerging, proudly sharing and celebrating their successes.”

"If you’ve invested in something or put in the hard yards towards an achievement, be it a holiday or even finding a designer handbag for less at TK Maxx, why not own it and tell the world?"

According to social media analyst Stephen O’Leary from Olytico, Ireland’s leading online and social media analytics company, online platforms allow Irish people to share their achievements like never before.

“Irish people are known for their self-deprecation, but with the rise of social media, we are increasingly balancing this false modesty by actively updating friends and followers every day with things that we are proud of. 

Olytico also conducted their own research into the top five phrases used to line up social media bragging:

  1. Delighted to announce

  2. Humbled

  3. #NoFilter

  4. Best concert/gig ever

  5. Best holiday ever

No surprises there.

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Well, we're going to miss Ed's tweets.

Ed Sheeran has admitted that he quit Twitter after having to face endless abuse from online trolls.

While speaking to The Sun, the singer explained how he receives waves of hatred on the social media site, and how just one tweet can upset his entire day.

 

A post shared by Ed Sheeran (@teddysphotos) on

"There's nothing but people saying mean things," he said.

"One comment ruins your day. But that's why I've come off it.

"The head-f**k for me has been trying to work out why people dislike me so much."

 

Ted, Tedd and Teddy

A post shared by Ed Sheeran (@teddysphotos) on

From now on, Ed admitted that it will only be promotional content that gets tweeted from his account.

He also said that he will still be using Instagram, and will have automatic uploads filter onto his Twitter page.

Guess we're not going to be getting gems like this anymore:

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President Donald Trump has defended his use of social media, saying it is "modern day presidential."

The US president came under fire this week after tweeting about two American TV hosts.

In one of his usual Twitter rants, Donald called MSNBC hosts, Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough, "crazy" and "physco," and described their behaviour as "unmoored."

Yesterday, he took to Twitter again, and defended his remarks, saying: "My use of social media is not Presidential – it's MODERN DAY PRESIDENTIAL."

Yes, OK Donald…

He added: "The FAKE & FRAUDULENT NEWS MEDIA is working hard to convince Republicans and others I should not use social media – but remember I won the 2016 election with interviews, speeches and social media."

Are the four years over yet?

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When you see a social media post that has been paid for, do you scroll on or keep listening?

Many bloggers and influencers have come under fire for not being up front about whether they are paid to talk about a product.

But now, one of Ireland's top influencers, Pippa O' Connor, has insisted that she doesn't get paid to post about goods or services – if she likes a product, she'll simply just say it.

 

A post shared by Pippa O'Connor Ormond (@pipsy_pie) on

According to goss.ie, the beauty blogger said: "Anything I talk about on here whether it's beauty, fashion, somewhere I've been, something I've used, if I am collaborating with a brand on anything, it will always be said this is an ad i.e they are paying me to collaborate with them.

"If I don't state otherwise it means I'm just sharing what I like.

"Just to fill you in on my point of view. I'm asked dozens, probably more than dozens of times a day to promote a brand, company, product, salon, hotel you name it I'm asked to plug it and promote it.

"But I have to respect the amount of following I have and be true. I could be on here 100s of times a day saying 'this is amazing', 'that's amazing', 'go here', 'go there' but you're not stupid. But I never ever do that.

 

A post shared by Pippa O'Connor Ormond (@pipsy_pie) on

"If someone asks me how much do I charge to do an Instagram post or Snapchat post I just don't, I don't do that. That's not what I'm about," she said.

"Apart from it being important to be honest and to not try and pull the wool over people's eyes to make a few bob, it's against the law, you have to state when something is an ad and if something is sponsored…and I think it's a good rule.

"You have to be true, you have to be honest with yourself, because you won't last and people will just see through that and be like 'ugh she's talking crap again'.

"I think there's nothing wrong by the way with a blogger, celebrity, influencer doing the sponsored tweets, snaps, instagram, by all means do it but be honest with yourself and be honest with everyone else," she explained.

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It's safe to say that cosmetic surgery has been on the rise in the past number of years.

From boob enhancements, to botox, fillers and nose jobs, it seems like everyone and their mother has got something done these days.

And now, this could be the reason why.

According to Nuffield Council of Bioethics, the reason so many people are going under the knife is because of social media.

The report looked at what influenced young people to consider cosmetic surgery, and the contributing factors included, "increased use of the rating of images of the self and the body [on social media], for example through 'likes'; the popularity of celebrity culture, airbrushed images and makeover shows; [and] the huge growth in the use of social media."

We can all admit that we get a tad jealous when we see a gal with the perfect booty or boobs online, but does it affect us so much that we want to change ourselves?

Apparently, so.

Image result for boob implants

The report further stated that "advertising and marketing widely reinforce the belief that beauty is correlated with happiness and success.

"Women in particular are surrounded by the message that they have a duty to 'make the best' of themselves."

Are you surprised by these findings?

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Growing numbers of LGBT people are choosing to 'come out' to friends and family on social media. 

This news comes from the LGBT Helpline, the national support service for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender people in Ireland.

Speaking at an LGBT Helpline event, Paula Fagan, National Coordinator of the LGBT Helpline, said the experience of coming out has changed significantly as a result of digital communications. 

'In the past, coming out tended to be a very personal experience, where you opened up about your sexuality to a small number of trusted family members or friends,' she said.

'And while people are still careful about who they tell when they are first coming out, once they feel more comfortable about their sexuality, more and more people are choosing social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter as a way of telling other family members, friends and their wider social circles.'

'We’re seeing that most people receive a lot of positive affirmation after coming out online.'

'They find it a reassuring experience, with social media often helping them to feel less isolated and allowing them to tap into extensive online support networks.'

 

A post shared by Art | Lgbtq (@diddly.gay) on

'But it is a big step, so we do encourage people to think about it carefully and consider what supports they have offline, in particular who they can talk to if they do not get the reaction they are hoping for.'

The event focused on the role of the internet in the lives of LGBT people, and how, while it can be used as a tool for those building confidence in their identity, it can be used negatively by those who seek to cyberbully members of the community.

'Undoubtedly, the internet has brought much good, 'said Helen McEntee, Minister of State for Mental Health.

'However, it has also introduced new pressures and new ways for people to scrutinise, judge and criticise each other,' 

If you or anyone you know is seeking support, vyou can find it at www.lgbt.ie or follow @LGBT_ie on Twitter, #itsgoodtotalk. 

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As many brides-to-be will know, planning a wedding takes a lot of work.

There's the dress, the rings, the venue, the invitations, the guest list… and of course, the wedding hashtag.

A wedding hashtag has only become popular in the past few years, and while some brides want to steer clear of social media on their big day, others opt to have a hashtag for the memories and the LOLs.

And many guests admit that it's much easier to find wedding photos on social media under a hashtag than trying to look up individual guests accounts'.

So, say hello to the Wedding Hashtag Test.

This new website is basically a time machine to the 90s, as it not only generates a hashtag, but it also calculates you and your significant other's compatibility.

You'll feel like you're doing a ~*groovy*~ test from a teen magazine.

But, it's really fun and you'll no doubt have a laugh with your partner when you only score a compatibility rate of 21 per cent.

Give it a go and let us know the gas hashtags it creates in the comments below.

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Breaking up is hard to do, and it's even harder to do when you see your ex-significant other liking girls' photos on Instagram or tagged in a rando's clubbing photos on Facebook.

Not that you'd be creeping or anything, but it's actually much better for you to avoid social media like the plague after a break up. 

Doing this will help speed up the recovery of your broken heart and help you move on, Exaholics relationships expert and clinical psychologist Dr Cortney Warren told Bustle

The psychologist told the online tome that being faced with information about your ex immediately after a breakup can negatively impact your ability to move on from the situation. 

She also referenced the constant opportunity to 'check up' on your ex's life as being counter-productive to a healthy grievance period.

It can also lead you to seeing things you do NOT want to see, such as your ex moving on with someone new. 

'If the relationship is over, the ease of communication only prolongs the frustration and hurt,' she told Bustle

According to dating site eHarmony, there are a number of ways to avoid drawing out the upset period after a breakup by taking certain social media steps. 

'Unfriend them on Facebook and stop following them on Twitter. Even though it may seem harsh to cut someone off so completely it is better in the long run because it will help you resist the temptation to cyber stalk them,' advises the site. 

The dating site also reminds us not to use our own statuses or tweets as a means of revenge, in an attempt to make someone jealous or as a tool to hurt someone’s feelings.

So as much as you may want to make sly digs about a certain SOMEONE's lack of sexual prowess or emotional range, Facebook, Twitter or Snapchat is not the place to have that rant. 

The proper place for that is at your place over a bottle of vino with the girls, safe in the sanctity of best friendship, not publicly on the internet. 

eHarmony also recommends avoiding social media when drunk, to avoid the temptation to send out an ill-advised booty call when every ounce of your gin-soaked being is telling you that that's a good idea.

Side note: We can assure you it is not a good idea. 

So, if all else fails?

Just block them from your social media feeds. 

If you can't see what they're up to then you are much less likely to think about them, and can focus on moving on and recovering from the break up.

It might be incredibly hard to resist the temptation to creep, but it will be much better in the long run. 

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Scrolling through Instagram is just one of our many online hobbies, and seeing the lives of others through a digitally altered snapshot has become the norm.

Instagram has been named as the worst social media site in terms of its impact on mental health.

new study by The Royal Society for Public Health has found that the photo filtering app is the most negative in terms of people's body image, FOMO and sleep, and that it can trigger feelings of depression, anxiety and loneliness.

'Social media has become a space in which we form and build relationships, shape self-identity, express ourselves, and learn about the world around us; it is intrinsically linked to mental health,' said Shirley Cramer of the RSPH. 

However, the survey of 1,479 youngsters aged 14 to 24, found Instagram was positive in terms of self-expression and self-identity.

YouTube, with its communal attitude and diverse range of content was ranked as the most positive when it came to mental health.

The video platform is followed by Twitter, Facebook and Snapchat in that order. 

The RSPH is calling for the introduction of a pop-up heavy usage warning on social media: 'The social media platform would track usage and provide the user with a pop-up warning when they breach a set level of usage deemed potentially harmful.'

'It is then up to the user to decide if they carry on using the platform or stop, although the warning may provide links to information and advice on social media addiction,' reads the report.

They also want social media platforms to highlight when photos of people have been digitally manipulated on photo sharing sites.

'This may be in the form of a small icon or watermark at the bottom of someone’s photo that indicates an airbrush or filter has been used that may have significantly altered their appearance.'

'Young people, and in particular young women, are bombarded with images that attempt to pass off the edited off as the norm,' said the study.

'This practice is contributing to a generation of young people with poor body image and body confidence.'

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In the society we live in, we put a lot down to social media and the connections we make from it.

And as much as we think that getting ALL the 'likes' on social media is a good thing, it doesn't actually make people feel any better about themselves.

A recent study carried out at the University of South Wales found that 'likes' don't really reflect how we feel at all.

340 participants took part in the study which involved a questionnaire being sent out via Facebook and Twitter.

Silver Iphone 5s on Brown Wooden Table

In the questionnaire, they were asked to record how much they agreed or disagreed with various statements.

So, for example, they were asked to agree or disagree with, 'the attention I get from social media makes me feel good' or 'I consider someone popular based on the amount of likes they get'.

The study also found that people who ask for 'likes' or buy them are seen to have low self-esteem and trust issues.

The same is true for those who delete a picture if it doesn't receive many 'likes' (but come on, we're all a little bit guilty of that).

Person Holding Iphone

The overall result found that 'likes' on social media doesn't actually make a person feel better about themselves or give them any added confidence.

Dr Graff , who conducted the study, said: "The proliferation of social media use has led to general concerns about the effects on our mental health. 

"Although this is just a relatively small scale study the results indicate that the ways we interact with social media can affect how we feel and not always positively."

We think hanging out with mates over a bottle of vino or having some family time is so much better than 'likes' on Facebook. Do you agree?

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