Online Bullying What Is Bullying?

Online bullying and online harassment typically happens through chat rooms, text messages, and emails, and it generally happens when teens arent in school, the studies show.

The findings appear in a special edition of the Journal of Adolescent Health.

Internet Harassment: What to Do?

Focus on safe use of new technology, not banning the technology.

Todays kids and teens are major media users, but they need grown-up guidance about safe media use, note the CDCs Corinne David-Ferdon, PhD, and Marci Feldman Hertz, MS. They predict that “with the development of new cell phones that are small enough to fit into young childrens hands and that are designed to be visually attractive to a younger audience, more and younger children will become competent and frequent users of this technology.”

That means that research on preventing online harassment “must be rapid and flexible enough to keep up with the evolving nature of technology,” write David-Ferdon and Hertz.

How to solve the problem

How to solve the problem if you are being bullied, tell a friend, tell a teacher and tell your parents. It wont stop unless you do. It can be hard to do this so if you dont feel you can do it in person it might be easier to write a note to your parents explaining how you feel, or perhaps confide in someone outside the immediate family, like a grandparent, aunt, uncle or cousin and ask them to help you tell your parents whats going on.

Your form tutor needs to know what is going on so try to find a time to tell him/her when it wont be noticeable. You could stay behind on the pretext of needing help with some work. If you dont feel you can do that, then go to the medical room and speak to the school nurse.

The best idea is if a teacher can catch the bullies red-handed. That way, you wont get into bother from anyone for telling tales. It will be clear to everyone what has been going on. Dont be tempted to hit back because you could get hurt or get into trouble.

Hitting someone is an assault. Try to stay in safe areas of the school at break and lunchtime where there are plenty of other people. Bullies dont like witnesses. If you are hurt at school, tell a teacher immediately and ask for it to be written down. Make sure you tell your parents.

Bullying is upsetting Bullying is very upsetting and if you feel you cant cope, tell your parents and go to see your doctor. Many doctors are very sympathetic about the effects of bullying and yours may be able to write a note for the school explaining the effect that bullying is having on your health. You could think about judo or martial arts classes so that you are confident you can look after yourself if necessary.

If people are making nasty remarks about you then it may be because they are jealous. Perhaps youre better looking than they are or work harder or perhaps the teachers like you better. One way of dealing with remarks is simply to say…yeah, whatever,…. each time so that you show them that it isnt having the effect of upsetting you in the way they think. (Liz Carnell and Bullying UK, 2008)

GENERAL ADVICE

Remember the Golden Rules.

Do not give out personal information too freely. Always encourage your child to tell you of anything that upsets them. Keep a record of all bullying incidences either by saving or printing emails. If an email or text message is particularly disturbing or breaks the law, contact the police. Check on your schools anti-bullying policy and whether it addresses bullying using computers and mobile phones. If not, encourage them to look at this issue, if necessary with support from your PTA and School Board.

Bibliography

Be Safe Bullying. (2002). Online Bullying. Retrieved on March 23, 2008 at http://www.besafeonline.org/English/bullying_online.htm

Belsey, Bill. (2004). Cyberbullying.ca. Retrieved March 23, 2008, from Web site: www.cyberbullying.ca

Liz Carnell and Bullying UK. (2008). Formally Bullying Online. Advice for Pupils. Retrieved on March 23, 2008 at http://www.bullying.co.uk/pupils/index.aspx

Li, Q. (2006). Cyberbullying in Schools:.

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