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Posts Tagged ‘online threats’

Texting on Cell Phones Main Line of Communication For Teens

Tuesday, May 3rd, 2011

Texting and Instant Messaging Can Hurt Children

Schools deal with the issue of harassment through text messaging and online instant messaging every day.

Cell phones and texting is the primary form of communication with teens. Families need to learn about internet safety and cyberbullying online.

But, many adults do not realize just how often children are being bullied online or through texting.

Often too afraid to tell their parents, children try to deal the problem of cyberbullying themselves. They often only getting their parents involved when the situation gets out of control and the child is helpless to do anything about it alone.

Texting is Main Source of Communication

Teachers and parents agree that texting-whether the act of sending one or the anticipation of receiving one- distracts tweens and teens.  Most schools prohibit cell phones in the classrooms, but teens are very adept at getting around the system.

A 2008 Harris Interactive study found that nearly half of kids-42% could text even when blindfolded.

Tactics of the Cyberbully

Bullying, threats and intimidation, harassment and causing embarrassment of another are all tactics of today’s cyber bully.

This growing problem uses interactive technology such as cell phones, chat rooms and online instant messaging in an effort to harass, embarrass or otherwise victimize another person.

The motivation of the cyberbully is widely varied. Often schools are powerless to help as much of the bullying takes place off school grounds.

Why do Children Become Cyberbullies

The reasons children cyberbully each other are many. Sometimes children are holding a grudge against their victim, or want to emotionally hurt another. Sometimes they act out of boredom as a child seeks a new form of entertainment. Sometimes kids fight back against being bullied by becoming bullies themselves.

How to Combat Cyberbullying

At this juncture law enforcement around much of the world is ill equipped to deal with cases of cyber harassment. Right now most laws only apply to cyber threats such as hacking or death threats.

Often the only recourse for cyber harassment victims is to report the problem to their Internet Service Provider. In most cases cyberbullying is only considered a breach of the terms and conditions of the ISP and the only recourse is to suspend or cut off the bully’s internet access.

This usually only stops the bullying for a short time while the cyberbully sets up a new account, or finds access elsewhere.

Questions to Ask Yourself

  • What would I do if I found my child was being victimized by a cyber bully?
  • Do I know the signs that my child may be being harassed by a cyber bully?
  • Could I tell if my child might be bullying someone else online? How would I deal with it?

Bully Advocate

  • We empower the bully to gain empathy and learn new ways of communication
  • We empower the bystander to get involved and diffuse the confrontation
  • We empower the victim to be courageous and set boundaries
  • We empower the group, school, family or community to adopt a no-bully, respect for all policy

Follow us on FaceBook at Judy Helm Wright or on http://www.Twitter.com/bullyadvocate

You will be glad you did.

Dangers of Cyberbullying – Online Threats

Friday, September 10th, 2010
The Dangers of Cyberbullying

It has become a part of our mainstream media to read about cyberbullying and the young people who are affected daily.  Many do not tell, but suffer in silence.
Out of a fear of losing access to technology many kids and teens do not inform parents and caregivers, teachers or friends they are experiencing problems with cyberbullies.
Although similar to normal bullying in many ways cyberbullying involves the use of cell phones or other technology as a means to harass others.
Cyberbullies use the internet and text messages to embarrass or intimidate another person.
Messages and posts can range from threats of physical harm to disclosing personal information on their victim. The information cyberbullies put out information intended to defame or embarrass their victims.
Cyberbullying often begins with young boys, but girls are more likely to continue the behavior through young adulthood. Threats, and sexual remarks are often the earmark of the cyberbully. However, sexual remarks are not usually classed as sexual harassment and do not usually involve a sexual predator.
Who Is The CyberBully?

The behavior of the cyberbully is not limited to kids and young adults. There are many instances of adults who commit some form of cyber-harassment against another adult. These adults have a pattern of threatening employment or earnings of another individual.

Many teens and children who are being cyberbullied are afraid to tell. They are fearful they will lose computer or phone privileges if they tell their parents.

They often stalk others through the internet–threatening the safety and reputation of their victim. These cyber stalkers often use search engines and social media to sabotage and harass their victims.
Cyberbullying can be either direct or indirect

Direct bullying involves communication directly between the victim and the bully, while indirect bullying involves others in the process to gang up on the victim.
Cyberbullies can often remain anonymous by using temporary e-mail addresses and social networking accounts to harass or impersonate others.
How To Combat The Threats
  • Change your e-mail address and cell phone number, be choosy who you give your new contact information to
  • Avoid unfamiliar chat rooms and websites
  • If a child, then tell an adult who has the power to help you.
  • If an adult, consult the local police
With few laws governing harassment over the internet and through texting messages victims often feel helpless and scared. These feelings can lead to low self esteem, anger, frustration, depression and even suicidal thoughts.
What to Ask Yourself
  • How can I tell if someone I love is being cyberbullied?
  • What would I do if I found myself the victim of a cyberbully?
  • Have I ever written or done something online that another person might consider cyberbullying?
For more information please visit www.cyberbullyinghelp.com