We live in a technological world. Technology has for sure made a lot of things easier. But do you think that sometimes it gets a bit overboard?
Enhancement of technology helped in connecting the world together through digital media all around. The development of new and innovative approaches has made our communication better and feasible. Technology and social media play an ever present part in a teen’s lives. But the omnipresent technology has its fair share of drawbacks as well. Cyberbullying happens to be one of them.
So, let’s throw light on how we can combat cyberbullying.
There are a few things that teens can do to reduce their chances of getting bullied. Digital media helps us in many ways but also carries along with it some of the undeniable pitfalls which at times ruin an individuals’ life. One of the snags that it holds is cyber bullying.
The dictionary defines Cyber Bullying as “an aggressive, intentional act or behaviour that is carried out by a group or an individual, using electronic forms of contact, repeatedly and over-time against a victim who cannot easily defend themself.”
Let’s know more about what it is and how we can prevent it.
Types of Cyberbullying:
It is the act of leaving someone out deliberately. Exclusion exists with in-person bullying situations, but is also used online to target and bully a victim.
Harassment is a broad category under which many types of cyberbullying fall into, but it generally refers to a sustained and constant pattern of hurtful or threatening online messages sent with the intention of doing harm to someone.
Outing/Doxing refers to the act of openly revealing sensitive or personal information about someone without their consent for purposes of embarrassing or humiliating them. This can range from the spreading of personal photos or documents of public figures to sharing an individual’s saved personal messages in an online private group. The key is the lack of consent from the victim.
It is similar to Doxing, with an added element of deception. In these situations, the bully will befriend their target and lull them into a false sense of security. Once the bully has gained their target’s trust, they abuse that trust and share the victim’s secrets and private information to a third party or multiple third parties.
It is considered as a serious form of cyberbullying that can extend to threats of physical harm to the child being targeted. It can include monitoring, false accusations, threats, and is often accompanied by offline stalking. It is a criminal offense and can result in a restraining order, probation, and even jail time for the perpetrator.
It is when a bully uses your child’s social networking accounts to post inappropriate content with their name. It can be harmless when friends write funny posts on each other’s profiles, but has the potential to be incredibly harmful. For example, a bully posting racial/homophobic slurs through someone else’s profile to ruin their reputation.
It happens when a bully creates a made up profile or identity online with the sole purpose of cyberbullying someone. This could involve creating a fake email account, fake social media profile, and selecting a new identity and photos to fool the victim. In these cases, the bully tends to be someone the victim knows quite well.
Dissung refers to the act of a bully spreading cruel information about their target through public posts or private messages to either ruin their reputation or relationships with other people. In these situations, the bully tends to have a personal relationship with the victim, either as an acquaintance or as a friend.
It is when a bully will seek out to intentionally upset others by posting inflammatory comments online. Trolling may not always be a form of cyberbullying, but it can be used as a tool to cyberbully when done with malicious and harmful intent. These bullies tend to be more detached from their victims, and do not have a personal relationship.
This type of online bullying consists of posting about or directly sending insults and profanity to their target. Flaming is similar to trolling, but will usually be a more direct attack on a victim to incite them into online fights.Technology and social media play an ever present part in teen’s lives, making them vulnerable to cyberbullying. However, there are a few things that teens can do to reduce their chances of getting bullied.
Major Signs of bullying?
- Some of the signs of bullies include getting confident, aggressive, and possessing an intense need to dominate.
- Bullies tend to control people.
- Bullies choose children who can be overpowered verbally and physically. Their target is children who are quiet, fearful, anxious, and lack self-esteem.
- They are willing to abuse and use people to fulfill their motive.
- One of the reasons behind such a type of behavior is that they belong to physically abusive and poorly managed homes.
Effects of cyberbullying?
- Anxiety and depression
- Changes in sleep and eating pattern
- Lack of interest in studies
- A constant feeling of sadness and loneliness
- Reduced academic achievements
Cyber bullying must be reported immediately when countered without any delay and hesitation. Helpline numbers, mail id’s and websites are available everywhere we can report such crimes immediately. If reported early we can prevent further incidents from taking place. We should always create awareness about the forms of cyberbullying and its consequences.
“Bullies are made, not born, by factors in their lives.”