Cyber bullying on campus

Have you ever been a victim of cyber bullying?

Nowadays, an increasing number of people, especially the young generations are using new technology such as the Internet and cell phones. In school, the use of new technology can increase students’ social interaction and enhance collaborative learning experiences. Although technology provides a large number of benefits to student, it also has a “dark side”, which can be used for bad things . Cyber bullying is a disturbing new twist on bullying that arises from the development of new communication technologies like Internet and mobile phones.

Internet usage and mobile phones

Information and Communication Technology (ICT) are permeating through every aspect of life in Australia. According to a report by the ABS (Australian Bureau of Statistics), over 79% children have access to the Internet, which is available for 69% of these children during school hours and 71% outside of school hours. The proportion of gender is not different from males and females (males 80% and females 79%). What is more, the proportion of children using the Internet is different based on ages, with 60% of 5 to 8 years old while 96% of 12 to 14 years old. The proportion of Internet use in households was higher (92%) than in school (86%). Children who use the Internet at home for various activities, the most popular styles are educational activities (85%), playing online games (69%) and listening music (47%).

In 2009, a survey collected data on mobile phones ownership of children and published on ABS (Australian Bureau of Statistics). It is estimated that 31% (844,400) children have mobile phones during interview. The proportion of girls is 33%, while the boys is 29%. A higher proportion of older children (12 to 14 years old) had a mobile phone (76%) compared with youngest group (5 to 8 years old).

What is cyber bullying?

Cyber bullying is a bullying that involves the use of communication technologies such as e-mail, cell phone and pager text message, instant messaging, defamatory personal websites, and defamatory online personal polling web sites, to support deliberate, repeated, and hostile behaviour by an individual or group that is intended to harm others . Cyber bullying has many different forms in terms of flaming, harassment, cyber talking and so on.

  • Flaming: Sending angry, rude, vulgar messages to others.
  • Harassment: Sending offensive messages to a person repeatedly.
  • Cyber talking: Threatening others using intimidating content.
  • Denigration: Sending or posting harmful, untrue, or cruel statements about others.
  • Masquerade: Pretending to be someone else and sending or posting material that makes others in potential danger.
  • Outing and trickery: Sending or posting sensitive, private, or embarrassing messages or images to others or make them public.
  • Exclusion: Action that specifically and intentionally exclude a person from an online group

Here are some video interviews about cyber bullying.

Why cyber bullying is different?

According to stop bullying.gov, the children who are being bullied are also bullied in person. What is more, the children often need take a long time to getting away from the behaviour.

  • Cyber bullying can happen 24 hours of the day and night.
  • Cyber bullying messages and images can be post and spread quickly to other audiences. It is difficult to trace the source.
  • It is extremely difficult to delete the angry, rude, or harassing contents after they are being post and spread widely.

The incidence of cyber bullying and consequences 

Cyber bullying was first mentioned in the Australian press in August 2003, with an informal student survey about cyber bullying in 40 schools in New South Wales . The first Australian peer-reviewed research publications addressing cyber bullying followed in 2004 and 2005 . Despite an increasing number of people concern over cyber bullying in Australia and young people’s access to technology is on the increase, very little was known by adults about this online behaviour. Data collected from previous studies reported that 8-10% of young people aged 12 t0 14 years old reported being cyber bullied and 6% reported cyber bullying others every few weeks or more frequently in the previous terms at school .  An Australian study that about 120 8-year-old students found over a quarter of them knew someone who had been bullied using communication technologies . Australian principles have indicated that an increasing number of children suffer from cyber bullying in school . The number of adolescents who have access to the Internet and mobile phones increases 745,000 to 1 million in 2005 , which with the increasing number of incidents of cyber bullying.

Here are some facts about cyber bullying.

  • Approximately 43% kids have been bullied online, and 1 in 4 has suffered from cyber bullying more than one time.
  • 70% of children in school have seen online bullying.
  • Exceed 80% of teenagers have an access to the Internet and mobile phones, which have a potential risk in cyber bullying.
  • Almost 81% of teens agree cyber bullying is not difficult to get away with than bullying in person.
  • 90% kids just ignored cyber bullying when they have seen social media bullying.
  • Only 10% cyber bullying victim tell their parents or trusted adults when they have being cyber bullied.

Recent statistics show that:

  • 20% of children and young people indicated fear of cyber bullies made them reluctant to go to school
  • 5% reported self-harm
  • 3% reported an attempt of suicide as a direct result of cyber bullying
  • Young people are found to be twice as likely to be bullied on FB as any other social networking site
  • 28% of young people have reported incidents of cyber bullying on Twitter
  • 26% of young people have reported incident bullying on Ask.fm

This is a news release that from ABC news, a Melbourne mother has blamed her 14-year-old daughter’s suicide on the Internet and the tragic case has highlighted the severe consequences of cyber bullying among young people.

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