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Cyberbullying – New Term – Old Concepts

The term cyberbullying did not exist a decade ago but mean people did.

Cyberbullying is the repeated use of technology to harass, humiliate or threaten others.

The techniques and styles of bullying have changed but the cruelty and power struggles are still going on in schools internationally. Bullies are not limited to the classroom, hall or playground.  Because so many children use technology on a daily basis, cyberbullying can take place anywhere and anytime.

Anywhere from one-third to one-half of youths have been targeted by cyberbullies, according to an article by Jennifer Holladay in Fall, 2010 issue of Teaching Tolerance, a project of the Southern Poverty Law Center.  Jennifer goes on to say ” And those experiences produce damaging consequences-everything from a decline in academic performance to thoughts about suicide.

Types of Cyberbullying

  • Identity theft- fake profiles might be set up pretending to be an individual with the sole aim of bullying others
  • Chat rooms, blogs and forums- although you are supposed to be at least 13 years old to participate, very few are monitored.
  • Pictures and photo sharing – videos of girls dressing and undressing in the locker room after soccer practice can be taken with an Iphone and then shared on various sites.
  • Prank phone calls- these may just be annoying, but can turn to stalking if it persists.
  • Text messages- can be abusive and threatening.
  • E-mail- it is very easy to set up a new email account with a fictitious name and begin sending offensive e-mails.
  • Instant messages- quicker than email, these permit users to have real time conversations and arguments.
  • Social media- Facebook and Myspace are easy for cyberbullies to post offensive messages.

What Should Parents Do About Cyberbullying?

  • Encourage them to talk to you about what is going on in their lives and the lives of their friends. If they are feeling anxiety or fear I recommend a wonderful program @
  • Don’t over react until you are sure that it wasn’t a misunderstanding.  Youth are nervous about sharing concerns with parents for fear of them going ballistic and making matters worse.
  • Encourage them to show you any abusive or offensive emails and keep a record of what has gone on.
  • Turn on safety features to ensure that your family is only getting messages from those you wish to correspond with.
  • Ask them how you can help them to solve the problem.  If you jump in and solve, it will only reinforce in their minds that they are victims.
  • Teach them life skills, like setting boundaries and speaking up in difficult situations.  These are social skills that will help them for the rest of their lives.

Cyberbullying may be a new term but you can equip your family to win and prosper in any situation.

Please sign up for a free report @ http://www.cyberbullyinghelp.com which will give you tips and techniques to strengthen your children in the new cyber-world.

Article written by

Judy is a parent educator, family coach, and personal historian who has written more than 20 books, hundreds of articles and speaks internationally on family issues, including care giving. Trained as a ready to learn consultant, she works with Head Start organizations and child care resource centers.

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One Response to “Cyberbullying – New Term – Old Concepts”

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