Cyberbullying Kelly Schermerhorn Model Schools Coordinator [email_address] January 13, 2011-Cohoes HS
Overview Cyberbullying information to be shared Question and answer format regarding an issue that affects all It is NOT DESIGNED TO PLACE BLAME, OR SCARE, but rather to EDUCATE, EMPHASIZE RESPONSIBILITY, AND PROBLEM-SOLVE
Cyberbullying What it is, who is involved, where it is, and how it affects the kids in your life What can be done about it?
What is it? Cyberbullying is the repeated use of information technology, including e-mail, instant messaging, blogs, chat rooms, pagers, cell phones, and gaming systems, to deliberately harass, threaten or intimidate others. Unlike physical bullying, where the victim can walk away, technology now allows for continuous harassment, from any distance, in a variety of ways . *New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services
Who is a cyberbully? Many times, a cyberbully is also a bully in face-to- face encounters. Bullying over the computer is a natural extension of their destructive behavior. Some people who become cyberbullies are often the victims of bullying. They may take out their anger and frustration in cyberspace. They may be targeting the people who bully them or they may have picked a different target. Still others regard cyberbullying as a game and nothing more than something fun to do. *Multishare Information Sharing & Analysis Center; MS-IASC
Who are Cyberbullies? May be known to the victim or an online stranger. May be anonymous and enlist others, including online “friends”. May be related to fights about relationships. May be based on hate or bias. Some teens think cyberbullying is a game.
Where is it found? E-mails Instant messaging Text or digital imaging messages Web pages Web logs (blogs) Chat rooms or discussion groups Social media sites Plus more…
Where is it found? (continued) Significant amount occurs off-campus, but it is impacting student relationships on-campus. Bypass Internet filter/proxy sites. Use cell phones or other digital devices. This raises liability concerns.
How it affects kids… Little research has explored the possible effects of cyber bullying on children. When students are asked how they believe cyberbullying affected them, they indicate that it made them sad and unwilling to attend school. *Raskauskas & Stoltz, 2007. A survey of middle and high school students found that children who were cyber &quot;bully/victims&quot; (had cyber bullied others and also had been cyberbullied) had the highest rates of anxiety, depression and school absences compared to cyber &quot;bullies&quot;, cyber &quot;victims&quot; and children who weren't involved in cyberbullying. By contrast, children not at all involved in cyberbullying had the highest self-esteem and grades and the fewest symptoms of health problems. *Kowalski & Limber, under review.
How can parents monitor what their kids are doing on the computer? Set parental controls and activity report in operating system Web monitoring program that runs undetected in the background Can capture screen shots, record sites visited, monitor & record chat logs and capture every keystroke that your child makes, among other choices These also have features to allow/disallow certain activities and sites and can set time “chunks” when computer access is allowed You monitor from a web based internet connection
Facebook Facebook is a social network service and website launched in February 2004 that is operated and privately owned by Facebook, Inc. As of July 2010, Facebook has more than 500 million active users. Users may create a personal profile, add other users as friends and exchange messages, including automatic notifications when they update their profile. Additionally, users may join common interest user groups, organized by workplace, school, or college, or other characteristics. Facebook allows anyone who declares themselves to be at least 13 years old to become a registered user of the website. Wikipedia.org
How could Facebook be used inappropriately? Pictures posted that were supposed to be private. Creating mock Facebook page to degrade a person. Inappropriate messages, status messages, postings, content, etc. Hacking into others accounts/creating viruses and scams.
What to do? Facebook Security- www.facebook.com , Resources, Security page Privacy Controls-choose who you want to see your profile (be sure you know how you want to customize your settings) Recommended settings-think of who will see what you post, control each post you make, control your apps and control where/how you are tagged From Facebook: “ Information you've shared with everyone - as well as your name, profile picture, gender, networks, and username could be seen by anyone on the internet. Please be aware that it will be visible to anyone viewing your profile, and apps and websites you and your friends use will be able to access it.”
What to do if being bullied on Facebook Facebook suggestions on how to limit being bullied on Facebook: accept friend requests safely (only real-life people that are known), use the “block” feature to stop abusive behavior, report directly to Facebook, restrict privacy settings and respond to abusers in the right way. Block feature explained below : To do this, show your teen how to enter the name or e-mail address of the user he or she wants to block in the &quot;Person&quot; or &quot;E-mail&quot; fields at the bottom of the page and click &quot;Block.&quot; Your teen can visit this page at any time by navigating to the &quot;Privacy Settings&quot; option in the Account drop-down menu available from the top of every page.
What to do if being bullied by texting Keep an open dialogue with your child Do not retaliate! Block the number and alert your wireless provider Save all messages, text, pics sent-print out what you can Alert the school officials-teachers, administration If no resolution has been reached, take all information to the police-it is a crime and documentation has been used in court
IT IS A CRIME!!! The Albany County Legislature voted in November 2011 to approve a law which makes cyberbullying a misdemeanor punishable by a $1,000 fine or a year in jail. It includes all forms of electronic harassment, including texting and phone spoofing, as well.
Sexting Sexting that involves teenagers sending explicit photographs of themselves to their peers has led to a legal gray area in countries that have strict anti-child pornography laws, such as the United States. Some teenagers who have texted photographs of themselves, or of their friends or partners, have been charged with distribution of child pornography, while those who have received the images have been charged with possession of child pornography; in some cases, the possession charge has been applied to school administrators who have investigated sexting incidents as well. The images involved in sexting are usually different in both nature and motivation from the type of content that anti-child pornography laws were created to address. *wikipedia.org
Laws regarding sexting Recent information regarding sexting in the news: In 2009, six teenagers in Pennsylvania were charged after three girls sent sexually explicit pics to three male peers. In 2007, 32 Australian teenagers from Victoria were prosecuted regarding sexting activity. NYS law: can result in felony charges, including creating, possession and distribution of child pornography. Assemblyman Ken Zebrowski (D-Rockland) has introduced a bill that will create an affirmative defense where a minor is charged under child pornography laws if they possesses or disseminates a picture of themselves; or possess or disseminates the image of another minor (within 4 years of their age) with their consent. The affirmative defense will not be available if the conduct was done without consent. PS-Vermont was considering legalizing teen sexting in April 2009, stating that if it is consensual between 13-18 year olds, it shouldn’t be prosecuted. *wikipedia.org
Conclusion If you see something, say something Do not look the other way “ I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.&quot; Questions?