An Iowa City teenager and his friends are killing cyber bullies with kindness. And their classmates are reaping the benefits.
Jeremiah Anthony created a Twitter feed to compliment his fellow West High School classmates after reading a story about cyber bullies, people who hound their victims via social media.
“You shouldn’t be such a coward you have to hide behind a screen and say bad things to people,” he told TODAY.
Soon, Anthony and two friends were sending praise to randomly picked classmates, and sometimes teachers, under the Twitter handle @WestHighBros.
They have delivered their compliments in more than 3,000 tweets so far.
“Very creative and wise. You’re an outstanding musician, with your guitar and your voice. Keep being lovely and caring of all,” they told @Alexandra_Dobre.
To @evpurk: “Your encouraging personality and generosity toward others makes you very likeable. You’re quite the intelligent kid, keep it up.”
And to @zachnullmeyr: “You are the man, one of the best runners West has right now. You have more work ethic than just about anyone.”
The school's students, as well as the Iowa City community, have responded positively to the effort to spread online joy, paying the efforts forward in their own tweets.
“Just as I begin to lose faith in humanity, I learn of these gentlemen@westhighbros thank you thank thank you,” said @Zooeysuff.
A video about Anthony and his effort, "A Sincere Compliment," can be found on HooplaHa, a website created specifically for spreading good news.