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Mother of tragic Izzy Dix reveals bullied teenager's torment online

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: October 07, 2013

Izzy Dix

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The mother of a schoolgirl who killed herself says she died because of cyber bullying - including being asked to post naked photos of herself online.

Tragic Izzy Dix, 14, was discovered by her mother Gabbi at their home after suffering months of internet abuse.

Her family and friends have blamed her death on controversial website Ask.fm which they say left her "deeply troubled".

Mum Gabbi has now spoken for the first time about the abuse and also revealed Izzy was asked to post naked pictures of herself.

She says her daughter was asked to upload nude pictures on the online game 'Body Part For Body Part' before she died.

The game encourages users to post naked photos of themselves online by anonymous users.

Gabbi, of Brixham, Devon said: "Izzy had been trying to cope with life while undergoing an extended period of bullying.

"She was deeply troubled after being cyberbullied on Ask.fm, where she had no idea who her tormentors were because of the anonymity aspect of the site.

"A game called 'Body Part For Body Part' really disturbed her where she was asked to post naked photos of herself online by anonymous users."

Gabbi was speaking out to urge people to support an e-petition set up by the Izzy Dix Anti-Bullying Memorial Group.

The petition, which can be found at www.change.org, is calling for Ask.fm to be shut down and more to be done to end cyber bullying.

It has 4,500 signatures and needs to reach 100,000 to attract debate in the House of Commons

Gabbi said: "We need to teach that bullying is not an acceptable way of communicating your feelings there are other ways and other avenues.

"We need parents to be more aware of what their children are doing, both online and off. We need them to teach that kindness, empathy and compassion are what society needs not hate.

"We need social media sites to take more responsibility for the safety of young people and for the actions of their users. We need schools and the police to take bullying more seriously.

"We need education and support programmes for bullies, victims and parents. And most of all, we need the government to take our message on board and show us that they mean business by making changes that will make a difference to people's lives."

Ask.fm, which has been at the centre of controversy over cyberbullying, has around 60 million users.

The Latvian-based website, which has been linked to several teenage suicides, allows anonymous users to post comments and questions to a person’s profile.

Following the Ask.fm related suicide of 14-year-old Hannah Smith from Leicestershire in August this year, Prime Minister David Cameron, called the site "vile".

An inquest into Izzy's death will be held at a later date.

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