‘Damaging, degrading and hateful’ – the Endcliffe gossip page ‘exposing’ students

By Jacob Wibberley-Howe

A controversial gossip page targeting residents at the Endcliffe Student Village has risen to prominence over the past two weeks amassing over 1,100 followers on Insatgram.

The page, which goes by the username endcliffegossipxoxo, allows residents to anonymously send in gossip about other residents at the University of Sheffield accommodation. The page then posts the information for over 1,000 people to see.

A large amount of the content is vulgar and aims to “expose” the various residents targeted in these posts.

For many people who are featured it can be extremely shocking to find out that personal aspects of your life have been put out in the open.

Amelia Elder, 19, an Endcliffe resident, who was targeted by a post on the page, said:  “I felt very uncomfortable. I can see the funny side but it was very unnerving not knowing who is sending untrue or personal things about you.”

The account appears to play off the shock factor its posts provide, with the content including crude language and inappropriate topics.

The nature of the page has led to concern over the effect that it may have on those who are targeted in the posts.

Another Endcliffe resident, Ben Ross, 19, said: “I think the content posted is very immature and childish, some things on there could really affect someone’s mental health, I don’t think it should be allowed to continue.” 

Other Endcliffe residents said the account should be forced to close.

Charlie Kenworthy, 19, said: “It’s damaging to people’s mental health.”

Margaret Lewis, chief executive of Sheffield Mind, said: “This online bullying could have a significant effect on an individual’s self-esteem and emotional well-being.”

She called on Instagram to moderate pages such as this.

Ms Lewis said: “These pages need to be moderated, if content doesn’t contravene existing legislation but is nonetheless damaging degrading and hateful, then there needs to be more education about this at University, coming from the perspective of people who have been subjected to this online abuse, outlining how it has negatively affected their mental health.”

The account owner, whose identity is still unknown, did not provide a response when Shef Live contacted it for comment.

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