Alkemy Lab at the TIM Girls Hackathon

A challeng among girl-teams of aspiring web developers in order to create the best app against the cyber-bullying and for a responsible use of web

Is application developing a work for men? TIM says “No” and it does it with the TIM Girls Hackathon: a competition in wich girl-teams of aspiring developers fight against each others using codes to realize the best app.

The main themes of the event were the cyber-bullying and a responsible use of the web, areas in wich the apps created diring the hackathon are designed. Bullying, teasings and brutalities have found indeed in the web a fertile ground to be born and, through the digital sphere, to grow up in new and various ways.

In recent days it has spread the news of a new kind of cyber-bullying: the picture of a Mexican guy together with the ones of the victimes of terroristic attacks, even if he is not involved in them. A wierd case that seems to be an action of cyber-harassment, as Francesca Paci adfirms in the article “Chi è la vittima di tutti gli attentati terroristici?”, that yesterday was published on La Stampa. Cyber-bullying and cyber-harrassment are very important problems for a great number of people now, expecially for young people like the girls who took part in the TIM Girls Hackathon.

The hackaton by TIM is ideed devoted to young girls, especially students from the last three years of high school, and it was born in order to put women in contact with the world of developing. According to statistics, in fact, women developers are a minority compared with their men collegues. TIM wants to contribute to a trend reversal using the hackathon that is part of the TIM digital innovation itinerary and that is organized in collaboration with Codemotion.

The hackathon had four stages: the 7 hours challenge took place simoltaneously in Padova, Firenze, Cagliari and Bari. In the past, the girls aspiring developers fought also in Roma, Bologna, Milano, Venezia, Torino, Napoli and Catania.

Women and innovation: a successful partnership, as the backgrounds of the women who form the jury show. They are successful professionals in the world of cumputer science and ICT. The tutors shared their experience explaining how they overcame barriers and prejudices on ther itinerary to the leadership. Among them, there is Alessandra Spada, manager of Alkemy Lab and CTO of Alkemy. She, together with Serena Orizi and Andrea Mameli, formed the jury that judged the works realized by the girl-teams of aspiring developers who fought against each other in Cagliari. The article “Ada Lovelace Byron e le studentesse del Liceo artistico al TIMgirlsHackathon di Cagliari” is devoted to the winner team of the hackathon.

Alkemy Lab chose to focus on the cyber-bullying theme, leading a study using both official sources and social conversations.

In order to show how much and how the cyber-bullying phenomena spread out in Italy, Alkemy Lab has indeed realized an infographic, starting with the ISTAT 2015 data.


A guy out of two suffered a bullying action almost once in a year and, on four victims of bulllying, one of them sufferd from cyber-bullying.

The favourite targets of cyber-bullies are the girls and the high school students in general.

To understand how people talk about cyber-bullying on social networks, on April 3 Alkemy Lab has took a “snap-shot” of the Twitter conversations on cyber-bullying - and the Italian cyberbullismo - in a day.

This in turn showed that the tweets around this theme were published both by the accounts devoted to the fight against cyber- bullying and for psychophisical welfare, and by common users, common people who are interested in the problem, sharing their ideas and personal experiences.

The more used hashtags to deal with the phenomena are #cyberbullying, #bullying, #mentalhealth, #stopbullying and #antibullying. The fight against cyberbullying (#stopbullying and #antibullying) and the consequences of these acts to the psychological health (#mentalhealth) appear indees as trend topics of the conversations on cyberbullying.

The people of Twitter take the side of the victims. The hastag #halseydeactivatedparty was indeed used a lot, it is related with a particular situation. On april 3, the day we took our snap-shot, the pop singer Halsey turned off her Twitter account. A choice that came from the fact that her social accounts suffered from cyberbullying acts. The last one happend just a few days before the deactivation. The people on Twitter created the hashtag #halseydeactivatedparty to demonstrate solidarity to Halsey and disaproval against cyber-bullies. Among the other hashtags linked with the event,#istandwithhalsey and #weloveyouhalsey appear.

Not only the victims against the cyber-bullies. A hashtag used in the conversations is #GetLexRemovedFromTwitter, created in order to promote the deactivation of an account that was often aggressive and offensive against other users: Lex (@calumseungwanLex). One of the more active promoters of the motion is the account @5soshoodzilla. A great amount of the tweets that had this hashtag are the ones used to narrate and share the insults and threats suffered form the victimes.