Cyberbullying is bullying that takes place through technological means. It can occur through text messages, social media sites, online forums, or gaming platforms – anywhere people can view, participate in, or share content. Its purpose is to intimidate, spread rumors, harass, threaten, or otherwise use digital media to abuse someone mentally, emotionally, or verbally.
Cyberbullying can happen anytime, anywhere there is a digital device, and spread quickly in ways that can never be undone. Sometimes we don’t even realize we are doing it because it lacks the nonverbal cues we see and feel when interacting face-to-face. Easy access and perceived anonymity also may embolden us to write something we would not say to someone if they were standing in front of us.
An element of cyberbullying that is of particular concern is that sometimes children, youth, or adults don’t realize that they are cyberbullying either because of ignorance about online etiquette or because digital interactions often don’t have the benefit of the kind of nonverbal communication that happens in face-to-face communication. Also, the ability to be anonymous online or hide behind a digital medium can also too often leave people saying or doing things through digital means that they wouldn’t do face-to-face.
Especially now, when so much of our interaction is happening online, every educator needs to know about internet safety for their students. Watch this webinar to gain new tools for helping students make sense of ideas they are being exposed to and tips for helping them to avoid the dangers and pitfalls of internet use, social media, and gaming.
Tactics of Cyberbullying
Some of the most common cyberbullying tactics include:
- Posting comments or rumors about someone online that are mean, hurtful, or embarrassing.
- Threatening to hurt someone
- Telling someone to kill themselves.
- Posting a mean, hurtful, or embarrassing picture or video.
- Pretending to be someone else online to solicit or post personal or false information about someone else.
- Posting mean or hateful comments or content about personal characteristics, including race, religion, gender, sexual orientation and ethnicity, online.
- Creating a mean or hurtful webpage about someone.
- Doxing, an abbreviated form of the word “documents”, which is used to exact revenge and to threaten and destroy the privacy of individuals, by making their personal information public, including social security, credit card and phone numbers; addresses; links to social media accounts; and other private data.
What people are saying
Generation Text Online is a proactive way of addressing bullying related issues/communications that occur routinely, whether it be between student to student or student to teacher.Read More