Cyberbullying is a big problem that many do not know how to tackle; it ultimately leads to serious consequences.
The BBC gives an all-encompassing definition of cyberbullying:
“It is the use of electronic media – especially mobile phones and the internet – to intimidate, threaten or upset someone.”
“Cyberbullying can include:
Texting scary or rude messages by mobile phone;
Sending unpleasant photographs by mobile phone;
Using online message boards, chat rooms or social networking sites to post cruel messages;
Deleting the victim’s name from or ignoring their messages on social networking sites.”
This type of bulling is an on-going issue not only faced by teens but adults as well.
Initial findings in last year’s EU kids’ online survey revealed how almost a quarter of children claim they have been targeted online.
The internet can be an anonymous, instant and far reaching communications tool which makes it easy for bullies seeking to inflict maximum emotional damage.
Prevention of cyberbullying is paramount and social networking sites should definitely see it as a pressing online problem that calls for a solution.
Here are some facts about online bullying stipulated by Danny Brown, a multi-award winning marketer and blogger:
Nearly 43% of kids have been bullied online. 1 in 4 has had it happen more than once;
Girls are about twice as likely as boys to be victims and perpetrators of cyber bullying;
About 58% of kids admit someone has said mean or hurtful things to them online. More than 4 out 10 say it has happened more than once;
Bullying victims are 2 to 9 times more likely to consider committing suicide.
The last statistic is sadly very common, with recent high visibility news stories highlighting the impact of cyberbullying on teens and what they see as the only way to escape.
It may be difficult to eradicate this social evil; nevertheless, it is possible to devise ways to reduce it to the barest minimum such as visiting Childnet International which is a website that caters to young victims of cyberbullying.