Cyber bullying is defined as repeated harassment, mistreatment, or making fun of another person online through the use of computers, cell phones, and other electronic devices, according to the cyber bullying research center. Some common examples are receiving a threatening email, repeated text messages to cell phones, or forwarding supposedly private messages, pictures, etc. on to other people.
So why is cyber bullying an issue? Cyber bullying has increased with the new age of technology we are currently in. It has a higher percentage of happening than standard schoolyard bullying does. Cyber bullying causes higher suicide rates in students. Also, children cannot get a break from this at home like they can with standard bullying.
Here are some statistics about cyber bullying. A recent study of over 2,000 students found that suicide is twice as likely in those who have been the victim of cyber bullying. This study found that 9.1% to 23.1% of these students are the offender in cyber bullying and 5.7% to 18.3% of the students are the ones being victimized through cyber bullying. Many studies have found that girls are more likely than boys to be the target of cyber bullying. According to the National Crime Prevention Council, over 40% of teenagers reported being cyber bullied in the year 2006. This percentage does not include any students who did not report their victimization.
How are students cyber bullied? People who commit the cyber bullying often pretend to be someone they are not while online in order to trick their victim; they spread lies and rumors about another person through the Internet; trick people into revealing their personal information and then use this against them; send or forward mean text messages through cell phones; or even post pictures or videos about their victim without consent.
Here is a quote from a 12 year old girl from New York who has been cyber bullied. (Read the above quote directly)
Here is a quote from a 14 year old girl from New Jersey who has been cyber bullied. (Read the above quote directly)
Contrary to what cyber bullies may believe, cyber bullying is a big deal and it does effect students. Students who are being cyber bullied often show signs of anxiety, loneliness, low self-esteem, and depression. They may start to abuse alcohol and drugs and start thinking about suicide. Any one of these is one too many feelings that a student should not have to face.
The effects of cyber bullying can greatly effect a students education. It can directly cause poor academic performance. A victim may even drop out of school altogether in order to escape the bullying. These factors and the ones previously stated can affect the education of students. Anything negative going on in a students’ life has a negative effect on their school performance. Obviously dropping out of school would affect their education the most out of all of these.
In 2003, 13 year old Ryan Halligan committed suicide. His parents were shocked. After investigating the situation, Ryan’s parents realized he killed himself as a result of cyber bullying. Now, Ryan’s father is pushing for states to pass legislation regarding cyber bullying punishment in schools. However many school districts believe that the prevention of cyber bullying needs to also start at home, with parents talking to their children about this topic.
There are steps that can be taken to help prevent cyber bullying. When asked, many teens believe cyber bullying prevention needs to occur in three distinct levels. At the individual level by blocking communication from people who cyber bully, by refusing to pass along messages, and by telling their friends to stop cyber bullying. They think that online institutions should have moderators who can block cyber bully messages. Teens also think that their parents should talk to them about cyber bullying and tell them that it is wrong and that if they see it happening, they should report it to an adult.
To help prevent cyber bullying in schools, students, teachers, and administrators should talk and together develop rules against cyber bullying. Raising awareness in your community by holding assemblies discussing these problems and by creating fliers to give to students and parents can help prevent cyber bullying. You can also spread anti-cyber bullying messages to your friends and throughout your school.
Students, there are some things that you can do to help stop and prevent cyber bullying. Refuse to pass along messages from a cyber bully. Block all communication from a cyber bully from email, instant messages, phone messages, etc. If you know a friend is a cyber bully, directly tell them to stop. If you hear about cyber bullying happening, report it to an adult. Also, if you know someone who has been cyber bullied, tell them you are sorry it has happened to them, and give them support about the situation.
Everyone should know that cyber bullying is a problem. The National Crime Prevention Council has provided a great rule to think about: “Don’t forget that even though you can’t see a cyber bully or the bully’s victim, cyber bullying causes real problems. If you won’t say it in person, don’t say it online. Delete cyber bullying. Don’t write it. Don’t forward it.”
Cyber bullying New age bullying By: Stacey Ringwelski
What is cyber bullying? Defined as repeated harassment, mistreatment, or making fun of another person online through the use of computers, cell phones, and other electronic devices. (Cyber Bullying Research Center) Examples Threatening email Repeated text messages to cell phones Forwarding private messages, pictures, etc.
Why is this an issue? Cyber bullying has increased Has a higher percentage than standard schoolyard bullying Causes higher suicide rates Children cannot get a break from this at home, as opposed to standard bullying
Statistics Suicide is two times more likely with cyber bullying. 9.1% to 23.1% of students are the bullies 5.7% to 18.3% of students are the victims (Cyber Bullying Research Center) Girls are more likely to be the target 40% of teenagers have reported being cyber bullied over the last year (National Crime Prevention Council)
How are students cyber bullied? Those who cyber bully: Pretend to be someone else online to trick people Spread lies and rumors about another person Trick people into revealing personal information Send or forward mean text messages Post pictures or videos about a victim without their consent (National Crime Prevention Council) Carissa GoodNCrazy
Quotes “Recently, I was very much hurt by cyber bullying. This guy I know, let's call him Tom, started to IM me. He said that his friend was over, let's call him Joe. And then, randomly, Joe starts insulting me. He calls me a loser and says that I look like a potato. He curses and I feel like crying. The hurt was so real that I felt like throwing up. I hate IMing people now because I am scared of this kind of hurt.” (12 year-old girl from New York)
Quotes "Being bullied over the internet is worse. It's torment and hurts. They say ‘sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.’ That quote is a lie and I don't believe in it. Sticks and stones may cause nasty cuts and scars, but those cuts and scars will heal. Insulting words hurt and sometimes take forever to heal." (14 year-old girl from New Jersey) Arwen Abendstern
Impact on victims Students who are being cyber bullied often show signs of: Anxiety Loneliness Low self-esteem Depression Alcohol and drug abuse Suicide
Legislative issues Ryan Halligan story Father pushes for states to pass legislation regarding cyber bullying punishment
Stopping cyber bullying Many teens believe cyber bullying prevention needs to occur on three distinct levels: Individual Online institutions Parents methTICALman
Prevention in schools Develop rules Hold assemblies Create fliers Share anti-cyber bullying messages
For kids: what not to do Refuse to pass along cyber bully messages Block communication Tell a friend to stop cyber bullying Report cyber bullying to an adult Tell a victim you are sorry
Cyber bullying is a problem! “Don’t forget that even though you can’t see a cyber bully or the bully’s victim, cyber bullying causes real problems. If you won’t say it in person, don’t say it online. Delete cyber bullying. Don’t write it. Don’t forward it.” (National Crime Prevention Council)
Sources http://www.cyberbullying.us http://www.isafe.org National Crime Prevention Council Cyber Bullying Research Center Cell Phone Picture Sad Girl Picture Person at Desk Picture Instant Message Picture