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More than just a number

Rachel Adamson, Online editor in chief

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“Did you see Twitter?”

Junior Sally Dishman received this text on Nov. 4.

“I got onto Twitter and I was in shock,” Dishman said. “I was thinking of all the regret. Seeing that [the poll] made me think of people’s opinions of me.”

The poll was posted on an anonymous Twitter page known as NKC Polls and asked, “Who a bigger hoe?” Dishman and junior Jessica Gebauer were the options to choose from.

“The number of people that voted bothered me. It got 255 votes,” Dishman said. “I don’t even know that many people.”

The Twitter page was activated on Oct. 30 and was created as a way for students to anonymously send in polls to be posted and voted on.

“Every poll on that page was a form of bullying,” Dishman said. “There was nothing positive on that page.”

The poll was posted during second block on a B day. After second block, during passing time, Dishman and Gebauer were the main topic of interest.

“The worst part were the random people that came up to us acting like they knew us and everything we have done,” Dishman said. “But really they didn’t even know the whole story.”

Although Dishman and Gebauer were seen with their heads held high, the poll became a lesson for both girls.

“For the most part, Sally and I told everyone that it didn’t bother us,” Gebauer said.

“Ever since that poll I have pushed myself to be a better person,” Dishman said.

To counter-act against the NKC Polls page, an account called NKC Compliments was created by junior Jake Allen, where students anonymously sent in compliments to be posted.

“I wanted to distract people from going to that page and to look at mine instead,” Allen said. “I figured if people were focused on something more positive then maybe they wouldn’t care about the negative things being said.”

Dishman and Gebauer used the school wide social experiment “#blackoutbullying” to express their growth from the percentages that no longer play a large roll in their lives. Out of the 255 voters, Dishman received a 39 percent vote and Gebauer received a 61 percent.

“I wore the shirt because I wanted to point out that ‘hey I don’t care, it’s not a big deal, I’m not going to let that effect me,’” Dishman said.

The girls walked through the halls with pride upon their backs as people asked what the number represented.

“I was proud to wear it [the shirt],” Gebauer said.

Through this experience Dishman and Gebauer developed a new perspective on bullying.

“I don’t understand the satisfaction people get out of making people feel bad about themselves,” Dishman said.

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The student news site of Winnetonka High School
More than just a number