Why Cyber Bullying Is A Problem
Start writing a post
Politics and Activism

Why Cyber Bullying Is A Problem

A Comprehensive Insight

Why Cyber Bullying Is A Problem
Cyber Bullying - Infogram

Remember when bullying only took place in the school hallways? Remember when the bullies could not follow the victims home? Well, those days have come to an end; modern technology has changed the game of bullying. “Cyberbullying is the willful and repeated harm inflicted through the use of computers, cell phones and other electronic devices”.

Now, bullies can harass victims at any time and place on an Internet-connected device. Most importantly, this issue slowly keeps getting worse. It is a hot-button issue that no other generation has had to solve.

Bullying has been around for decades, even centuries. In fact, the word “Bully” originated during the 1530s. On the contrary, cyberbullying has emerged thanks to the advent of technology. In the 1990s and 2000s, webpages, cellphones, and early social networking sites like MySpace introduced cyberbullying.

One of the earliest notable cases is from 1998. In order to ridicule his algebra teacher and school principal, a middle school student produced a website. On it, he posted degrading, harmful statements about the school officials. This act would later get him expelled.

As technology kept evolving, cyberbullying progressively worsened. Different platforms and ways of degrading an individual got easier such as blogging and posting anonymously. Regrettably, this has caused some young people to deteriorate physically and emotionally or even take their own lives. All of these cyberbullying cases have prompted several groups to discuss and find an answer to this conundrum. Some of their solutions conflict with each other, but they are committed to stopping cyberbullying.

Nowadays, people associate social media with negativity, such as cyberbullying or cyber hacking. In actuality, only a small portion of youth is misusing it. Instead of using social media to hurt others, the majority are using it as a way to heal. For example, many teenagers go on YouTube to connect with their peers, find role models, and deal with their emotional and mental health.

These role models share intimate details about their lives like struggles with social anxiety and how they have conquered their adversities. In turn, their followers form online communities where they encourage and confide in one another. Several parties believe that the positive indicators showcase how social media can help those suffering from pain and why networking sites should not get involved with cyberbullying.

On the other hand, some believe that social media is extremely dangerous. Just to name a couple of the dangers youth can face include cyberbullying, cyber hacking, and cyber-stalking. The scariest part, especially for parents, is that adolescents may be exposed to this daily. Cyberbullying has been so prevalent in some states that they had to create laws to get personal information from students.

Illinois is one such case. In January 2014, Illinois required private and public school students to divulge their social media usernames and passwords on the spot. Proponents of their law believed that violation of privacy is sometimes necessary to protect students.

From school auditoriums to the White House, there seems to be cyberbullying awareness campaigns everywhere. However, some groups proclaim that this is not necessary for several reasons. First, there is an overabundance of awareness to the point that it may not be relevant or meaningful for the intended audience.

An article from The Journal of Law & Education proclaims that cyberbullying still exists with all the awareness and laws enacted by states. For instance, Diana Graber, a writer for The Huffington Post, attended the National Bullying Prevention Month Conference. Even though there was a flood of media attention and research, she felt she learned more from personally interacting and interviewing sixth graders. With these factors in consideration, dissenters of increased awareness rest their case.

Quite the contrary, supporters to cyberbullying awareness want more. When Diana Graber spoke with some sixth graders, they stated that they wanted schools to set aside time and teach them strategies. This learning experience will prepare them to handle cyberbullying situations in a mature, responsible way. Schools can take action by enacting anti-bullying policies and monitoring the behavior and self-esteem of students.

Educators, as well as students, need to be informed of the definition of cyberbullying and warning signs. It is also crucial for parents to be involved in this process. They need to be aware of their child’s Internet activity and have clear communication. Cyberbullying advocates affirm that increased awareness correlates with decreased incidents.

Even though fighting cyberbullying is considered to be a righteous cause, there are dissenters who say only a small portion of students are being cyberbullied. According to The Cyberbullying Research Center, twelve percent of middle and high school students who use social media are cyberbullies. This statistic shows that most youth are using the Internet for good and not bad. In addition, they proclaim that too much attention on combating cyberbullying can only lead to more problems.

Regulation of students’ social media accounts can be considered to be an infringement on privacy and freedom of speech. Coming full circle, the Illinois law that forced students to give school administrators their passwords was deemed too intrusive. The law was adjusted so that this disclosure of private information was only necessary if there was reasonable suspicion of cyberbullying. In the minds of these dissenters, if minors are not suffering and cyberbullying protocols are creating problems, why is society paying it unneeded attention?

On the flip side, advocacy groups highlight the importance of protecting young students from the dark side of cyberbullying. Research has concluded that seventy-five percent of young students encounter cyberbullying at least once annually. Cyberbullying can adversely affect the victims and bullies. Victims would have a decreased quality of life such as low self-esteem, low school satisfaction/achievement, and aggressive behavior.

Because victims feel more empowered to fight back online than face-to-face, cyberbullies are twenty times more likely to become a victim. Those who oppose cyberbullying agree that something rather than nothing needs to be done.

As evidenced, this is a multi-faceted, complicated debate. On one side, individuals have a positive view of social media, see no reason for increased awareness, and believe cyberbullying is impacting a minority of youth. On the other hand, people see social media as an evil, advocate for increased awareness, and believe cyberbullying is a persistent and prevalent problem.

Even though there is a plethora of disagreement, there is one thing both sides will support and agree with. They will want to stop cyberbullying. So, go and do something about it. The victims need a hero to save the day.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
houses under green sky
Photo by Alev Takil on Unsplash

Small towns certainly have their pros and cons. Many people who grow up in small towns find themselves counting the days until they get to escape their roots and plant new ones in bigger, "better" places. And that's fine. I'd be lying if I said I hadn't thought those same thoughts before too. We all have, but they say it's important to remember where you came from. When I think about where I come from, I can't help having an overwhelming feeling of gratitude for my roots. Being from a small town has taught me so many important lessons that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

Keep Reading...Show less
​a woman sitting at a table having a coffee

I can't say "thank you" enough to express how grateful I am for you coming into my life. You have made such a huge impact on my life. I would not be the person I am today without you and I know that you will keep inspiring me to become an even better version of myself.

Keep Reading...Show less
Student Life

Waitlisted for a College Class? Here's What to Do!

Dealing with the inevitable realities of college life.

college students waiting in a long line in the hallway

Course registration at college can be a big hassle and is almost never talked about. Classes you want to take fill up before you get a chance to register. You might change your mind about a class you want to take and must struggle to find another class to fit in the same time period. You also have to make sure no classes clash by time. Like I said, it's a big hassle.

This semester, I was waitlisted for two classes. Most people in this situation, especially first years, freak out because they don't know what to do. Here is what you should do when this happens.

Keep Reading...Show less
a man and a woman sitting on the beach in front of the sunset

Whether you met your new love interest online, through mutual friends, or another way entirely, you'll definitely want to know what you're getting into. I mean, really, what's the point in entering a relationship with someone if you don't know whether or not you're compatible on a very basic level?

Consider these 21 questions to ask in the talking stage when getting to know that new guy or girl you just started talking to:

Keep Reading...Show less

Challah vs. Easter Bread: A Delicious Dilemma

Is there really such a difference in Challah bread or Easter Bread?

loaves of challah and easter bread stacked up aside each other, an abundance of food in baskets

Ever since I could remember, it was a treat to receive Easter Bread made by my grandmother. We would only have it once a year and the wait was excruciating. Now that my grandmother has gotten older, she has stopped baking a lot of her recipes that require a lot of hand usage--her traditional Italian baking means no machines. So for the past few years, I have missed enjoying my Easter Bread.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments