Craziest lockdown work Zoom calls

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Rob zombie

Rob zombie

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I was in a management video call with six or seven of us when one suddenly took his headphones off, switched his video off and on and then got up and started beating his 10yr old kid and shouting profanities. It was shocking. One of the more senior guys on the call started trying to get his attention to tell him that we could see and hear him and tried in vain to make jokes and lighten the situation but I'm sure along with everyone else I just sat there with my mouth wide open. He obviously couldn't hear because he didn't have his headphones on. And it carried on for a good few minutes. Just one of the most uncomfortable things I've ever witnessed. Eventually he came back to his desk, put on his headphones and switched his webcam off then on and continued as normal. Nobody said a thing and we all just acted as if it never happened. To this day I'm sure he's clueless.
 
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jake52

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A lot less disturbing. Mid-meeting one person switched off their camera but didn't mute their mic and then proceeded to have the longest, loudest **** I've ever witnessed. Poor guy must have been desperate, when he came back there was 12 of us in stitches and he was clueless to what we were laughing at. We were on with clients in China who luckily saw the funny side as well.
 

jake52

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A lot less disturbing. Mid-meeting one person switched off their camera but didn't mute their mic and then proceeded to have the longest, loudest **** I've ever witnessed. Poor guy must have been desperate, when he came back there was 12 of us in stitches and he was clueless to what we were laughing at. We were on with clients in China who luckily saw the funny side as well.
That's a number 1 not 2
 
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Rob zombie

Rob zombie

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Sorry but how on earth did a group of people watch a man physically abuse a child and not say anything?

why was he not instantly sacked and the police informed?

not mentioning anything is condoning his actions.
Yeah that's maybe what should have happened in an ideal world. But it isn't what happened unfortunately. Not sure how far it veered into call the police territory to be honest. But certainly worse than you would expect to see in public from someone you know or work with.
 

johnwhitfield

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I’m going to be honest I’m actually really worked up over what has been described here.

Rob I don’t know you and I’m not trying to attack you on a personal level but I work with a range of children who have been physically/sexually/emotionally abused.

What you have described is 100% child abuse. If you witnessed it then it almost certainly happens on a regular basis.


you can’t turn a blind eye to it and pretend it didn’t happen

if you are uncomfy reporting it to the police please mail me the details and I’ll inform SHARP.

Bottom line that child is in danger.
 
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Rob zombie

Rob zombie

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I’m going to be honest I’m actually really worked up over what has been described here.

Rob I don’t know you and I’m not trying to attack you on a personal level but I work with a range of children who have been physically/sexually/emotionally abused.

What you have described is 100% child abuse. If you witnessed it then it almost certainly happens on a regular basis.


you can’t turn a blind eye to it and pretend it didn’t happen

if you are uncomfy reporting it to the police please mail me the details and I’ll inform SHARP.

Bottom line that child is in danger.
It has bothered me for a while and I guess that may be why I've posted this. This happened last year and I've changed job since then. I don't know whether I'd agree that the child is in danger. If I genuinely thought that then I would have done something about it. I certainly got a few good smacks as a kid. It's not the way I raise my kids. Happy to discuss it further though.
 

johnwhitfield

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It should bother all of us.

what you have described is textbook physical child abuse. honestly I doubt anyone would do what you’ve described as a one off. The fact he got back onto the call afterwards and was acting normally means it is normal in that household. Could you act like that after hitting anyone, let alone a child?

the argument that we got smacked as children doesn’t really hold water. The world has moved on and what was committed and witnessed is an offence.

sadly there are lots of kids who grow up in extremely violent and abusive households. One huge problems for authorities is that they are often left to pick up the pieces and people always ask why something wasn’t done earlier.

i’d be more than happy to run this by my DSL tomorrow to advise what the next steps could be.

seriously no one likes to get involved and it’s easier to let things slide but you really don’t want to be looking back at things wishing you’d handled it differently. Getting involved is 100% the right thing to do.

Apologies if any of this came across like I was having a go at you (I’d gladly buy you a beer when our paths finally cross) it’s just a real red flag for me. Some of the stuff I’ve had to deal with really does stay with you.
 
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Rob zombie

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It should bother all of us.

what you have described is textbook physical child abuse. honestly I doubt anyone would do what you’ve described as a one off. The fact he got back onto the call afterwards and was acting normally means it is normal in that household. Could you act like that after hitting anyone, let alone a child?

the argument that we got smacked as children doesn’t really hold water. The world has moved on and what was committed and witnessed is an offence.

sadly there are lots of kids who grow up in extremely violent and abusive households. One huge problems for authorities is that they are often left to pick up the pieces and people always ask why something wasn’t done earlier.

i’d be more than happy to run this by my DSL tomorrow to advise what the next steps could be.

seriously no one likes to get involved and it’s easier to let things slide but you really don’t want to be looking back at things wishing you’d handled it differently. Getting involved is 100% the right thing to do.

Apologies if any of this came across like I was having a go at you (I’d gladly buy you a beer when our paths finally cross) it’s just a real red flag for me. Some of the stuff I’ve had to deal with really does stay with you.
I'm going to run this by my mate in Australia who's a copper. His sister here in the midlands specialises in child abuse cases. I need to get more opinions on this as it's not something I can afford to take lightly as a decision. Wrongly reporting someone for this sort of thing could be disastrous for all involved. Including the kid.
 

Calimori

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There is no situation of wrongly reporting this. The police and services are trained to deal with it properly. You just tell them what you have shared here and they will work out the right actions.
 
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Rob zombie

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There is no situation of wrongly reporting this. The police and services are trained to deal with it properly. You just tell them what you have shared here and they will work out the right actions.
As i say, currently running it by my mate. He will run it by his sister who's a high ranking nurse (matron) that works with vulnerable adults and children. See what her opinion is and take it from there. My gut feeling is that although it was uncomfortable to witness the kid is not 'at risk'. I wouldn't like to be proved wrong on that but I'm certain I won't be. If she disagrees then it gets reported.
 
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Neil McRae

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I was in a management video call with six or seven of us when one suddenly took his headphones off, switched his video off and on and then got up and started beating his 10yr old kid and shouting profanities. It was shocking. One of the more senior guys on the call started trying to get his attention to tell him that we could see and hear him and tried in vain to make jokes and lighten the situation but I'm sure along with everyone else I just sat there with my mouth wide open. He obviously couldn't hear because he didn't have his headphones on. And it carried on for a good few minutes. Just one of the most uncomfortable things I've ever witnessed. Eventually he came back to his desk, put on his headphones and switched his webcam off then on and continued as normal. Nobody said a thing and we all just acted as if it never happened. To this day I'm sure he's clueless.

I hope you called the police because I for sure would have done.
 
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JustLikeMe

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I hope you called the police because I for sure would have done.
Agreed 100% with both you and @johnwhitfield. The fact that he tried to turn his camera off before beating the child means that he knows this behaviour has to be hidden, and the fact that he did this in the middle of a work zoom meeting means that it's second nature to him. Awful behaviour and really should be reported, there are no excuses for child abuse and no excuses for turning a blind eye.
 
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Rob zombie

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I've had a really long conversation about this today. The webcam being switched off doesn't necessarily indicate a prior intent to strike the child. People usually switch off their webcam if they need to get up out of their seat. I took the view at the time that while it was very unpleasant to witness it, it didn't break any laws. Unfortunately smacking kids isn't illegal in England yet (it will be in Wales soon) so not a Police matter unless I suspected it was a regular occurrence, which I don't.

One thing I definitely need to clear up is a misleading bit of wording in my original post which I hadn't realised until my mates sister had referred to it. Just to be clear, he didn't beat the child for 3 or 4 minutes. It was 2 or 3 smacks and then a lot of shouting for what felt like 3 or 4 minutes.
 

Calimori

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Legal or not, to smack, the whole thing together is abuse .
Lashing out is not smacking as punishment. It is beating, and then verbally abusing a kid for that long all sounds like rage and not how a controlled adult should react.
I understand your position as this is how so many abusers get away with their behaviour. People try to rationalise it and explain it as a one off.
But his uncontrolled rage and then returning to appear normal is how an abuser gets away with it.
 

JWG9999

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Why don't you make an anonymous call expressing concern? You can do that in all sorts of ways: dial crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or I'm pretty sure you can contact NSPCC anonymously too. You can also report abuse to your local council. Someone will check this child's welfare - you don't get involved.
 

russdx1

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Iv had similar issues in middle of meetings but it’s usually my kids coming in and beating me :( or climbing over me like a monkey when trying to talk.

Really need a door lock on my study!

I would be surprised if that dude still has a job after this, I know if my boss witnessed that he would be in serious trouble.
 
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Rob zombie

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It's definitely something I wish to hell I'd never seen. I just honestly don't know what to think and where the line of perspective is. I remember as a kid being hit quite viciously with a hairbrush by my mum because I was watching Grange Hill and someone said "fart" or it might even have been "trump". I just don't know. Should my parents have had their kids taken off them? They certainly would have by todays standards. And that's not me excusing anybody. The whole thing makes my head spin.
 
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It's not a case of being chicken Neil. It's a case of trying to think whether getting social services/police involved is appropriate or necessary. It's incredibly easy to offer advice on a situation and people that you know nothing about except for a few paragraphs on a forum. Would you really want this kid put into care based on what you've read in a few lines?
 

johnwhitfield

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Genuine question.

If you had seen this guy do the same thing to his wife/girlfriend or to a client would you hesitate at all to call it out? If not then why is it ok when a child is involved?
 

Neil McRae

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It's not a case of being chicken Neil. It's a case of trying to think whether getting social services/police involved is appropriate or necessary. It's incredibly easy to offer advice on a situation and people that you know nothing about except for a few paragraphs on a forum. Would you really want this kid put into care based on what you've read in a few lines?

you don't know what the outcome is for certain other than if you do nothing the child will be abused were it currently is.
 
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Rob zombie

Rob zombie

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Genuine question.

If you had seen this guy do the same thing to his wife/girlfriend or to a client would you hesitate at all to call it out? If not then why is it ok when a child is involved?
It's not that anyone's hesitating to call it out. It didn't get called out because people didn't know each other and who was friends with who and they were in shock. I've never even met any of these people. But it also didn't get called out because it was borderline. It would be better if there wasn't any room for misconceptions but currently hitting a child isn't illegal and therefore easily defended. So nobody is going to put their career at risk with that in mind.
 

Sako-TRG

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I got the sh^t kicked out me in the 70s at home, belts, cane rods and coat hangers 💪
Then the School teachers used to weight in and give me the strap at school. One teacher Mr Minto- used to stand on a chair and jump off whilst lunging down full force with the belt onto your finger tips, sore as fcuk 😬 had the technique and momentum squared pretty well 👍
Never done me any harm.
 

johnwhitfield

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Maybe it’s easier for me as I legally have to go through child protection training every year. The golden rule is to flag anything that you have concerns about. It’s not up to us to decide if something is legal or illegal.
 

M4carp

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I got the sh^t kicked out me in the 70s at home, belts, cane rods and coat hangers 💪
Then the School teachers used to weight in and give me the strap at school. One teacher Mr Minto- used to stand on a chair and jump off whilst lunging down full force with the belt onto your finger tips, sore as fcuk 😬 had the technique and momentum squared pretty well 👍
Never done me any harm.
I remember a teacher who had two slippers, Starksy and Hutch. He used to ask which one you wanted!!! Then there was the one with the ruler............
Had a kicking off my old man too but it wasn’t long before I was bigger than him😁
 
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Tilt_Birmingham

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It's not a case of being chicken Neil. It's a case of trying to think whether getting social services/police involved is appropriate or necessary. It's incredibly easy to offer advice on a situation and people that you know nothing about except for a few paragraphs on a forum. Would you really want this kid put into care based on what you've read in a few lines?

I can understand your hesitation

However, you initially said "and started beating his 10yr old kid and shouting profanities. It was shocking"

You pretty much summed it yourself... It was enough to shock you it must have been bad.

The question you have to ask yourself is... If this wasn't a one-off and his guy went on to cause further mental or physical harm or even death would you be able to live with yourself knowing you failed to raise the alarm?

I've also consulted a couple of people I know in the police and NHS and all have said if you raised concern they would simply refer it to social services who would carry out a child at risk assessment... They would go in, speak to the wife, children, and the person in question and determine if there was any need for support... I'm sure @johnwhitfield could confirm this.
 
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