Bullying and Technology
With the technological advances that have been made over the last decade comes a new wave of bullying or harassment for students of all ages. It is known as cyber bullying. Teachers, parents, and students are becoming more concerned with the over abundance of bullying that is taking place over the web, through texting and even through phone calls. What can be done to help protect students from unwanted texts, facebook messages, and all other forms of technological communication? Is there a way to censor these forms of communication without infringing on peoples freedom of speech? This paper will attempt to find answers ...view middle of the document...
This form of electronic aggression is increasing and the consequences are becoming much greater than anyone ever dreamed. According to the American Journal of Orthopsychiatry (2010) Students who are victims of cyber bullying at school are more likely to suffer depression than their tormentors. This study also concluded that “unlike traditional bullying, which involves a face-to-face confrontation, cyber victims may not see or identify their harasser; as such, cyber victims may be more likely to feel isolated, dehumanized or helpless at the time of the attack.”
In another study drawn from the Journal of Youth Adolescence (2010) a correlation was found between bullying and self-harm. The study used Agnew’s, 1992, social psychological strain theory of deviance and tested three different hypotheses about the effects of traditional and cyber bullying victimization on deliberate self-harm and suicidal ideation. The study found that due to the isolation and fear that cyber bullying causes students tend to internalize their feelings and therefore causing them to become suicidal. They feel like there is nothing they can do and that the bully won’t ever stop or that the bully won’t suffer any consequences for their behavior or that the threats made by the bully will be followed through with.
The national Institutes of Health (2010) performed a similar study and concluded that youth who are targets of cyber bullying at school are at greater risk for depression than are the youth who bully them. Depression seems to be the common factor found in all of the studies to date regarding cyber bullying and the negative effect it is having on today’s students. Even in countries like Sweden cyber bullying is becoming a problem with detrimental consequences. The Scandinavian Journal of Psychology (2010) performed a study that involved 360 adolescents ages 12 to 20. The survey was attempting to measure the nature and extent of cyber bullying in Swedish schools. They broke it down into four categories: texting, emailing, phone calls, and picture/video clips. The results showed that cyber bullying was high in lower secondary schools and less in sixth-form colleges. As in other studies they found that the victims of cyber bullying either chose to tell their friends or keep it to themselves.
On October 27, 2010 The Times (London England) reported about a Scottish secondary teacher who was a victim of a “horrific” cyber bullying campaign by her pupils. She found obscene comments posted about her during an online search that even included a very explicit and sexual in nature comment of what they wanted to do to her. They talked about wanting to stab her, shoot her in the face, and even burn her. This type of cyber bullying is becoming far too common and is not exclusive to the United States. It has spread at a rapid rate nationally and it seems that there is no way to stop it or even curb the attacks. There are reports of suicides, other forms of...