Game Show: Who handles trolls best?

The actor who uses trolls to create content, the singer who reposts with a savage reply or the comic who shares nasty trolls on her social media?
Juhi Mehta is the COO, President and Head of brand sales, at Qyuki, which handles content creators, YouTubers and celebrities
Juhi Mehta is the COO, President and Head of brand sales, at Qyuki, which handles content creators, YouTubers and celebrities
Published on Nov 20, 2021 08:27 PM IST
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ByRewati Rau

Sejal Kumar, 26

YouTuber

Sejal faced sexual harassment on a thread of comments
Sejal faced sexual harassment on a thread of comments

Trolling in a nutshell:

In the public eye since she was 19, Sejal has developed a thick skin for trolls. But when she stumbled across a string of comments discussing sexual activities men want to indulge in with her, she was too shaken to ignore it.

What triggered it:

She searched her name on Google images and a particular photo led her to a Reddit thread which said, ‘Sejal Kumar, how do we do her’, which had many other obscene comments.

How she reacted:

Shocked and scared, she took screenshots of the thread and put it on her Instagram stories.

Why repost?

“I don’t want to be quiet about being sexually harassed online,” she says.

What was the response to that?

“Some people said it’s brave but there are others who said I shouldn’t get so angry,” she says.

Do trolls induce anxiety?

“It takes a lot to read stuff like that about you and still smile,” she adds.

Neeti Palta, 41

Stand-up comedian

Neeti was provoked by abusive comments
Neeti was provoked by abusive comments

Trolling in a nutshell:

Often targeted for her jokes, Neeti felt compelled to call out the trolls that used foul language, and then defended it, calling it ‘standing up for culture’.

What triggered it:

During a show, Neeti made a light-hearted joke about a dubious health kit by an Indian brand. Trolls abused her in the foulest language and told her in the most colourful ways what they wanted to do to her, adding that this was their way of ‘defending’ culture’.

How she reacted:

She posted a screenshot of their DP and bio, along with the comments.

Why repost?

“Due to the foul language and the excuse of ‘defending culture’. Their bios claimed they were ‘proud Indians’, ‘humanitarians’ who ‘respect women’,” she adds.

What was the response to that?

“It’s common for people to go from ‘I want to date you’ to ‘die, you ugly b***h’ when you don’t respond.”

Do trolls induce anxiety?

“When it is agenda-based targeted trolling, of course it affects me.”

Tulsi Kapoor, 31

Musician and mental health advocate

Tulsi called out a troll who questioned her sexuality
Tulsi called out a troll who questioned her sexuality

Trolling in a nutshell:

Part of the Kapoor clan, Tulsi gets pulled into controversies she has nothing to do with but had to call out a recent comment when somebody named her grandfather and questioned her sexuality.

What triggered it:

A person commented on her picture, “Is Shammi Kapoor’s granddaughter gay?”

How she reacted:

She reposted it on IG, captioned, “I wish I was, because it would be my honour to love a woman the way she deserved to be loved”.

Why repost?

“My sexual orientation isn’t anyone’s business and being gay isn’t an insult!”

What was the response to that?

Friends reposted and called out the troll.

Do trolls induce anxiety?

“If I were trolled constantly, it would be challenging.”

And the winner is…Sejal Kumar

“Don’t let anyone determine how and who you should be”

“Sejal has stayed dignified and mature in her approach. Being an influencer comes with it’s own set of responsibilities, since you’re setting an example for many out there. A crucial takeaway from Sejal’s response is that having a balance is very important. Speak if needed and let go when you can,” says Juhi Mehta, Chief Operating Officer, Qyuki Digital Media

“To handle trolls you first need to know who you are and what you do, and once that’s established, do it with grace and confidence. The key is to not let anyone determine how and who you should be, even if you’re angry or appalled by what people are saying, because that leads to self-doubt, which, in turn, lets the hate get to your head, making you insecure. Besides inducing anxiety.”

From HT Brunch, November 21, 2021

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Tuesday, November 30, 2021