Compiled by Michelle Young, M.S. Ed April 2012
Parent Resource Center
5905 Forest Pl, Ste 205
Little Rock, AR 72207
What Is Cyber Bullying?
Cyber bullying, also known as electronic bullying or online social cruelty is defined as bullying:
Although sharing certain features is common with traditional bullying, cyber bullying represents a unique phenomenon that has only recently begun to receive attention in both the popular press and in academic circles. Cyber bullying not only looks and feels a bit different than traditional bullying, but presents some unique challenges in dealing with it. (Kowalski, Limber and Agatston, 2007)
Who Cyber Bullies?
Both boys and girls cyber bully, although it appears that girls are more likely to engage in cyber bullying and be targeted by cyber bullying than their male counterparts. This is a difference from traditional bullying, where we find boys engaging in bullying behaviors or being targeted in higher numbers than girls.
Effects of Cyber bullying
Cell phones and computers themselves are not to blame for cyber bullying. Social media sites can be used for positive activities, like connecting kids with friends and family, helping students with school, and for entertainment. But these tools can also be used to hurt other people. Whether done in person or through technology, the effects of bullying are similar.
Kids who are cyber bullied are more likely to:
Frequency of Cyber bullying
The 2008–2009 School Crime Supplement (National Center for Education Statistics and Bureau of Justice Statistics) indicates that 6% of students in grades 6–12 experienced cyber bullying.
Research on cyber bullying is growing. However, because kids' technology use changes rapidly, it is difficult to design surveys that accurately capture trends.
How can parents prevent Cyber Bullying?
Communicate with your children about their online experiences.
Parents need to discuss cyber bullying with their children as part of their regular discussions about Internet Safety and appropriate use of technologies. Parents can make it clear that using the Internet or cellular phones to embarrass or hurt others' feelings is not part of their family values. Discussing the golden rule as it applies to internet and technology use can be very helpful. Parents should discuss bystander behavior as well, encouraging children to speak out against cyber bullying they witness and to report it to the appropriate person. In addition, parents need to set up guidelines for appropriate use for each new piece of technology that is brought into the home.
How Can Educators Prevent Cyber Bullying?
Teach Students Online "Netiquette", Safe Blogging, and How to Monitor Their Online Reputation.
"Online netiquette skills are becoming vital as technology is increasingly being incorporated into most career paths. Many schools encourage teachers to keep blogs where class and homework assignments are posted for students to review. Students are asked to post assignments online. Providing tips on appropriate posting and online etiquette as part of incorporating more technology in the classroom is critical. In addition schools need clear policies against bullying and cyber bullying, and bullying prevention programs in their schools." (Kowalski, Limber & Agatston, 2007)
How Can Students Prevent Cyber Bullying?
Become a courageous bystander!
Sources: Cyber Bullying: Bullying in the Digital Age; www.stopbullying.gov
cyberbullyhelp.com cyberbullying.us stopbullying.gov
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