Emerging qualitative work documents that social media conflict sometimes results in violence in impoverished urban neighborhoods. Not all experiences of social media conflict lead to violence, however, and youth ostensibly use a variety of techniques to avoid violent outcomes. Little research has explored the daily violence prevention strategies youth use on social media, an important gap given the omnipresence of social media in youth culture. This paper examines youth strategies and factors that avoid violence resulting from social media conflict.
Four focus groups with 41 teenagers of color solicited strategies to prevent violence resulting from social media conflict. Three coders analyzed data in Dedoose, guided by systematic textual coding using a multi‐step thematic analysis.
Four approaches emerged to avoiding violence from social media conflict: avoid, de‐escalate, reach out for help, and bystander intervention.
Our findings position youth as key players in efforts to prevent violence from resulting from social media conflict.