If you are a parent or have been around a lot of children, you've dealt with this and know how exasperating it can be.
No one likes a tattle tale, especially those who have to listen to the tattling.
Tattling is ongoing. It never stops unless the tattling itself is dealt with. And I have found children have to be reminded about not tattling because they will quickly start it up again.
A few years ago, when I had three young children all day every day during the summer the tattling got ridiculous. My youngest was (and is) a whole lot faster than the other two. And since she was (and is) the one who does the not-so-nice stuff, she is the one who would be the object of the tattling if it was a typical situation. But what she would do is run into the house before her siblings got to tattle on her and would tattle on them first for tattling on her....I can tell you -- it was ridiculous!
Now that there are only two of them playing together all day this doesn't happen anymore (and they have grown up a bit), but I still deal with the tattling. As a parent I will probably deal with it in one form or another for the rest of my life.
God deals with it too. He's dealt with it since we began sinning!
Read how Jesus dealt with it:
"Now on the same occasion there were some present who reported to Him about the Galileans, whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. And He answered and said to them, 'Do you suppose that these Galileans were greater sinners than all other Galileans, because they suffered this fate? I tell you no, but, unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.'" Luke 13:1-3
The people telling Jesus this story were gossiping about these poor Galileans and trying to get Him to say they were better than the ones they were talking to.
Jesus didn't even comment on the slain Galileans, why it happened or anything. Instead He dealt directly with the ones speaking.
How often we do this -- we speak about someone else, about their failings when we need to be dealing with our own failings. The only one we are called to compare ourselves to is Jesus Christ. Jesus gives us the standard in Matthew 4:48. He says, "'Therefore you are to be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.'"
Don't tattle (gossip is a form of tattling by the way).
Don't even gossip about the people you see on TV or in the movies. They too are real people. They too are people who need Jesus.
And like children, we can slip and forget that tattling isn't good. Sometimes we can slip and find ourselves speaking negatively about another person. When that happens just repent and start anew. We are human, so wonderfully human.
Let others be human too.