Harassment, Trolling and Doxing

In the course of sharing research and knowledge through various publicity means, faculty, students, and staff may become subject to various forms of harassment, particularly online. This section provides some advice and resources.


Trolling: is an act of harassment, which primarily occurs online. It is a form of cyberbullying that can include posting rumours, threats, sexual remarks, violent comments, hate speech, or other comments that seek to intimidate or diminish an individual or group.

Troll: a person who intentionally antagonizes others online by posting inflammatory, irrelevant, or offensive comments or other disruptive content.

Doxing/Doxxing: the act of broadcasting private or identifying information about an individual for the purpose of harassment, and particularly racial and gender-based harassment.

Additional considerations

Research shows that harassment in online media has a detrimental effect on scholars and impairs free speech, particularly for women, gender non-binary people, queer people and racialized scholars. They are more likely not only to have their research attacked but to be attacked personally as well. This treatment or the potential for such treatment reduces scholars' willingness to take part in publicity efforts featuring their work, especially with traditional media. (Ketchum, 2020)

Immediate steps you can take

  • Document the harassment
  • Block the harassers
  • Contact the Communications Office

How the Communications office can help

  • If you are harassed, trolled, or doxed in the course of your publicity or knowledge dissemination efforts, contact Communications staff at communications@unbc.ca
  • We have procedures and advice that can support/protect you.
  • We can compile reports and screenshots of this behaviour on social media should legal action become necessary.
  • Harassment/trolling/doxing will be supported by Communications on a case-by-case basis.

Helpful links

UNBC Social media guidelines

Public Safety Canada: Cyberbullying info Sheet

Locking Down Your Digital Identity

Mitigating Internet Trollstorms


Ketchum, Alex (2020, July 14)Report on the State of Resources Provided to Support Scholars Against Harassment, Trolling, and Doxxing While Doing Public Media Work and How University Media Relations Offices/ Newsrooms Can Provide Better Support. www.medium.com