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Cyberbullying

  • 42% of children have been bullied while online. 1 in 4 have had it happen more than once.
  • Instant messaging is the most commonly used tool for cyber-bullies.
  • Cyber-bullies are twice as likely to be girls.
  • More than 1 in 3 young people have been threatened online.
    Sources: Yale University, i-SAFE Survey.

What is "Cyberbullying"?

Bullying is no longer limited to the playground and can take away the sense of safety that a child feels while at home. Stopbullying.gov defines cyber-bullying as, "...Bullying that takes place using electronic technology. Electronic technology includes devices and equipment such as cell phones, computers, and tablets as well as communication tools including social media sites, text messages, chat, and websites." Cyber-bullying behavior can include, but is not limited to:

  • Posting nasty pictures or messages about others on blogs, websites, or social media
  • Pretending to be someone else/fake profiles
  • Spreading rumors on social networks
  • Harassing text messages or emails

Cyber-bullying is put into Two Categories

Synchronic (real-time)
Asynchronic (delayed)
Chat rooms Social networks
(Facebook, Twitter, Whisper, MySpace, blogs, etc.)
Cell phones; text messaging Email
Instant messaging YouTube
Online gaming
(World of Warcraft, Call of Duty, etc.)

Those Most Affected

  • Ages 9-14 are most common as both victims and bullies
  • Girls are twice as likely as boys to be involved in cyber-bulling, as victim or perpetrator
  • Of those who are cyberbullied frequently:
    • 62% were cyberbullied by a student from their school
    • 46% were cyberbullied from a "friend"
    • 55% did not know who had cyberbullied them

Students in grades 6-8

  • 18% were cyberbullied at least once in the last couple months
  • 6% said it happened to them 2 or more times

Motivations

  • 81% of young people said that they cyberbully because they think it’s funny
  • Self-protection or revenge
  • Boredom
  • Ego-based; promote status
  • Seek a reaction; want to have control over others

How to tell if Your Child is Being Cyberbullied?

  • Computer avoidance or computer obsession
  • Rapid and sudden change in behavior at home or school
  • Nightmares

What You Can Do

  • Establish guidelines -- Download the MASK Safe Home Pledge and use it as a template by CLICKING HERE
  • Embrace technology
    • Don't write it off, despite its danger, it has many advantages if closely monitored
  • Learn about abbreviations
    • G2G, TTYL, BRB, etc...
  • Audit your child's online activity
  • Put your computer in a central location in your home
  • Know the usernames and passwords of your child's online accounts


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