TOWIE star Bobby Norris ‘shocked and traumatised’ by horrific homophobic death threats from online trolls
TOWIE star Bobby Norris has said he is “shocked and traumatised” after being subjected to a vicious homophobic hate campaign by online trolls.
He has been sent graphic photoshopped images of himself in a coffin and terrifying doctored pictures showing him being beheaded.
The abuse became so bad that Norris was forced to temporarily leave social media.
TOWIE star Bobby Norris said the homophobic abuse online has been ‘constant’ over the last week.
“The last few days it’s got so, so dark and so bad,” he told co-host Stephen Lang.
“The videos and images I’m being sent with my head photoshopped onto… I won’t go into too may details but it’s quite a traumatic thing to see yourself laying in a coffin or hanging from a rope or something holding a gun to your head,” he said.
The 33-year-old TOWIE star has been the subject of hate campaigns from online trolls in the past, but said it has never been as bad as it is right now.
This is very much about me being a gay man. Most of them coming in are all about kill the LGBT+, gay this, gay that.
“This is like next level. I’ve never experienced or seen anything of this severity. From waking up to going asleep, it’s boom, boom, boom. It’s constant. It’s not slowing down, it’s not giving up.”
He said the current campaign of hate is like a “massive hate crime”.
“This is very much about me being a gay man. Most of them coming in are all about kill the LGBT+, gay this, gay that.”
Norris shared some of the terrifying images on his Instagram stories to show his fans the extent of abuse he was receiving.
“They’re dark, they’re traumatic, they’re awful,” he said.
“There’s been a few that I feel so shocked, so traumatised even from what I’ve seen, I’m just like I can’t, it can’t be shared.”
He won’t be deleting his social media profiles, as he doesn’t want the trolls to win.
The reality TV star said he feels the need to speak up about online abuse because of his platform.
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“It’s so, so detrimental to people. It can affect people’s mental health. Social media can be the most amazing place and such a great tool.
“We can connect to people all around the world. As a whole, when used properly, it’s a great thing, but the dark side of it is dark.”
Despite the abuse, Norris has said he won’t be deleting his social media accounts, as he doesn’t want trolls to feel like they’ve won.
Norris has been campaigning for parliament to introduce new legislation for the last 18 months that would make online trolling a criminal offence.
He founded End the Trend to Troll campaign and spoke virtually to MPs in May about the homophobic abuse he has endured online.
“It’s time to finally put a stop to this. MPs want to hear more about it, and I’m so grateful that they’re sitting up and listening,” Norris said in a social media video in May.
“I really feel like we’re one step closer to ending the trend to troll.”