Corey Legge Details Receiving 'Significant Harassment Online', Cites 'Tall Poppy Syndrome'

28 February 2024 | 11:11 am | Mary Varvaris

Dealing with the alleged harassment has become “a relentless and exhausting process which is adding to an already overwhelming workload.”

Corey Legge

Corey Legge (Source: Supplied)

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In addition to releasing extremely catchy country music, Australian artist Corey Legge is also known for writing important open letters on social media.

Taking to Facebook yesterday, the Friday Nights singer explained that he’s experienced “the dark side of social media”, having been the target of alleged “significant harassment” online.

He began his post with a bit of background: aside from his music career, Legge is a teacher who, for most weeks of the year, teaches five days a week.

Recently, he’s increased his TikTok usage to expand his burgeoning music career - a necessity for today’s artists - but in the last few months, he’s noticed that several students have taken a particular interest in his second career.

“At first, this was flattering and a nice acknowledgement of all my hard work,” Legge wrote. “Unfortunately, as is the case in all groups within society, there are people with ill or misguided intention, who seek to bring down those who are experiencing success in the public eye. In Australia, we call this 'tall poppy syndrome'.”

Things have gotten worse in recent weeks, where Legge cites the alleged “significant harassment” online he’s received from students aged between 12 and 16.

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Legge described the behaviours: “A recent example of the types of behaviours I have been subjected to online include numerous male students making extremely inappropriate and suggestive comments of a sexual nature to get a reaction from their peers.

“I have also had fake profiles created by these same individuals to impersonate me, with names such as 'coreyleggeslover' and a screenshot of my face as their profile picture.”

Legge wrote that he had reported the fake accounts to TikTok on seven separate occasions, “but they refuse to acknowledge a breach of their policy”. At the school he’s worked at for six years, Legge has tried to enforce the proper procedures to deal with the harassment, but “it is a relentless and exhausting process which is adding to an already overwhelming workload.”

At the time of writing, Legge has blocked 250 students on social media and installed strict conditions on his TikTok account.

The problem has progressed, with Legge writing that it “concerns me greatly” to see “these types of attention-seeking behaviours” at the school and in public, including when he’s trying to run errands.

“Can you imagine trying to buy groceries and having students yell at you from a distance to get your attention while you try to go about your business? It is very unpleasant,” Legge wrote.

While he understands that since the COVID-19 pandemic began in March 2020, people have been through “exceptionally tough times with limited social interaction”, Legge can’t excuse the harassment thrown his way.

“In short, I am giving you a small insight into life as a young teacher in the hope that those with school-age children can understand how intense and draining this profession can be, both during and after work hours,” Legge continued, adding, “I am not a parent myself, so I am not here to lecture anyone on how to raise their children, but I do hope that this story has struck a chord and initiated some very important conversations about respect and boundaries.

“The general public often wonders why so many brilliant young teachers leave the profession so early in their careers. I think I now know the answer, but I hope it doesn't come to that. There are plenty of shining lights in this next generation of young people. I still hold out hope that common sense and humanity will prevail.”

Last month, Countrytown premiered the music video of Corey Legge’s latest single, West Coast.

West Coast is the second single from Legge’s forthcoming, unnamed fourth album. While the album doesn’t have a release date attached to it yet, it’s one of Countrytown’s most anticipated albums of 2024.

I have recently experienced the dark side of social media. As you may know, I am a high school teacher and teach 5 days...

Posted by Corey Legge on Monday, February 26, 2024