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Cyberbullying

Just as the use of technology itself has evolved, so has the ability to bully. Bullying, once restricted to the school or neighborhood, has now moved into the online world. Bullying through electronic means is referred to as “cyberbullying.”

As adults, thinking back, it was just a generation ago that kids and teens were asking their parents for a phone in their room — maybe even one with a separate line or three-way calling — so they could easily and somewhat privately connect with more friends.

Today, a kid or teen’s desire to connect with friends has not changed, but the options for doing so have grown tremendously. Children are not only asking for their own tablets, gaming devices, and mobile phones at a younger age, they also want access to popular social media sites, and the ability to engage in online games and share information.

Just as young people used to spend unmonitored time playing with friends in the neighborhood, outside the periphery of adults, they are now engaging with each other in the cyberworld, “talking” with each other, “talking” to each other, and “talking” about each other, often without adult or parental monitoring. While technology allows young people to connect in meaningful ways, such as the opportunity to share ideas, photos, videos, and more, the unsupervised nature of the cyberworld demands the need for guidance, guidelines, and social responsibility.

Definition

While the definitions of cyberbullying, sometimes called online bullying, vary from source to source, most definitions consist of:

  1. electronic forms of contact
  2. an aggressive act
  3. intent
  4. repetition
  5. harm to the target
    (Hutson, 2016 )

The technology, accessed through computers or cell phones, used to cyberbully includes:

Other helpful definitions include:

Unique characteristics of cyberbullying

Recently a student shared “that all bullying hurts, whether in person or through technology, the end result is that bullying in any form is emotionally damaging.”

Contrasting offline bullying with online bullying:

  1. targets might not know who the bully is or why they are being targeted, as cyberbullying can happen anonymously;
  2. cyberbullying can have a large audience - the actions of those who cyberbully can go viral;
  3. it is often easier to be cruel using technology because of greater physical distance and the person bullying doesn’t see the immediate response by the target - they might not recognize the serious harm from their actions because they lack seeing the target’s response; and
  4. it can be harder for parents and adults to manage cyberbullying

(Hinduja & Patchin, 2014 ).

Rates of Incidence

How cyberbullying impact students

Trends to address cyberbullying

Related Resources

References

Aboujaoude, E., Savage, M. W., Starcevic, V., & Salame, W. O. (2015). Cyberbullying: Review of an old problem gone viral. Journal of Adolescent Health, 57, 10-18 Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26095405

Arslan, S., Savaser, S., Hallett, V., & Balci, S. (2012). Cyberbullying among primary school students in Turkey: self-reported prevalence and associations with home and school life. Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, 15, 527-533. Retrieved from  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23002988

Beran T, & Li, Q. (2007). The relationship between cyberbullying and school bullying. Journal of Student Wellbeing, 12, 15-33. Retrieved from http://www.ojs.unisa.edu.au/index.php/JSW/article/view/172

Cyberbullying Research Center. (2016). What is cyberbullying? Retrieved from http://cyberbullying.org/what-is-cyberbullying

Feinberg, T., & Robey,  N. (2009). Cyberbullying: intervention and prevention strategies. National Association of School Psychologists, 38,  S4H15-1–S4H15-4. Retrieved from https://www.questia.com/magazine/1P3-1923303221/cyberbullying-intervention-and-prevention-strategies

Hamm, M. P., Newton, A. S., & Chisholm, A. (2015). Prevalence and effect of cyberbullying on children and young people: A scoping review of social media students. JAMA Pediatrics, 169, 770-777. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26098362

Hinduja, S. & Patchin, J. W. (2014). Cyberbullying Identification, Prevention, and Response. Cyberbullying Research Center. Retrieved from http://cyberbullying.org/cyberbullying-fact-sheet-identification-prevention-and-response

Hinduja, S. & Patchin, J. W. (2015). Bullying beyond the schoolyard: Preventing and responding to cyberbullying (2nd edition). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. Retrieved from Publications.http://cyberbullying.org/bullying-beyond-schoolyard-preventing-responding-cyberbullying-2nd-edition

Hutson, E. (2016). Cyberbullying in adolescence: A concept analysis. Advances in Nursing Science, 39, 60-70. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26836994

Juvonen, J., & Gross, E. F. (2008). Extending the school grounds? Bullying experiences in cyberspace. Journal of School Health, 78(9), 496-505. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18786042

Kowalski, R. M., Giumetti, G. W., Schroeder, A. N., & Lattanner, M. R. (2014). Bullying in the Digital Age: A Critical Review and Meta-Analysis of Cyberbullying Research Among Youth. Psychological Bulletin, 140(4), 1073-1137. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24512111

Patchin, J. W., & Hinduja, S. (2016). Summary of our cyberbullying research (2004-2016). Cyberbullying Research Center. Retrieved from http://cyberbullying.org/summary-of-our-cyberbullying-research

Pearson, C. M., Andersson, L. M., & Porath, C. L. (2005). Workplace incivility. In S. Fox & P. E. Spector (Eds.), Counterproductive work behavior: Investigations of actors and targets (pp. 177-200). Retrieved from http://psycnet.apa.org/psycinfo/2004-19514-008

Pham, T., & Adesman, A. (2015). Teen victimization: Prevalence and consequences of traditional and cyberbullying. Current Opinion Pediatrics, 27, 748-756. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26474342

Smith, P. K., Mahdavi, J., Carvalho, M., Fisher, S., Russell, S., & Tippett, N. (2008). Cyberbullying: Its nature and impact in secondary school pupils. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 49, 376-385. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18363945

Wölfer, R., Schultze-Krumbholz, A., Zagorscak, P., Jäkel, A., Göbel, K., & Scheithauer, H. (2014). Prevention 2.0: Targeting cyberbullying @ school. Prevention Science, 15, 879-887. Retrieved from http://link.springer.com.ezp3.lib.umn.edu/article/10.1007%2Fs11121-013-0438-y

Youth Risk Behavior Survey. (2015). Trends in the prevalence of behaviors that contribute to violence. Centers for Disease Control. Retrieved from http://www.cdc.gov/healthyyouth/data/yrbs/pdf/trends/2015_us_violence_trend_yrbs.pdf