Cyber bullying can be defined as the use of information and communication technologies to support deliberate, repeated, and hostile behaviour by an individual or group that is intended to harm others. Cyber bullying is mostly conducted by kids that have very early authority to these technologies. The problem is boosted more by the truth that bully can hide behind a fake name, disguising his or her true identity while carrying out these crimes. This anonymity makes it very hard to track the bully which encourages the bullies to further elevate their actions.
Cyber bullying is distinct from regular physical bullying due to the anonymity that the Internet provides. Cyber bullies do not have to admit their actions publicly due to the anonymity they gain and cyber bullying is mostly beyond the legal reach of school boards since it mostly takes place outside of the school premises. Cyber bullying comes in various forms some of them include flaming, persecution, disparagement, imitation, cyber stalking, and threats. Cyber bullying consists of acts as making personal threats, sending provoking insults or racial insults, trying to inject the victim’s computer with viruses and spamming his/her inbox with mails. The victim can deal with cyber bullying up to some extent by limiting his/her computer connection time, ignoring threatening or defamatory messages, and ignoring mails from unknown sources. More effective and high-tech measures include the blacklisting or white listing of e-mail accounts, changing e-mail addresses frequently, switching ISPs, switching cell phone accounts and trying to trace the source. The use of communication technology is comparatively new so stern laws against cyber bullying are yet to be effectively implemented. As for the time period, the crime is covered by the existing laws against threats and harassment. In some cases, it may be suitable to take help from the local police department or to seek an attorney. Retaliation in these cases isn’t an option since this can increase the level of threats and upscale the situation.
Causes of cyber bullying
Nearly 15 percent of students experience cyber bullying, according to a research conducted in 2014 it was found that students feel a certain kind of boost in confidence after bullying others and the anonymity that internet provides is reported as to be the major cause of cyber bullying. Some youths torment others via internet to take out the frustration they develop due to various reasons such as household problems. It is proved that the children who grow up facing a lot of bullying or harassment are very likely to bully others after growing up. Some other reasons of cyber bullying are revengeful feelings, for entertainment, to feel powerful, to prove themselves.
Effects of cyber bullying
Cyber bullying on social media is linked to depression in teenagers, according to new research that analyzed multiple studies of the online phenomenon. Cyber bullying has received high level of inspection because of series of high-profile suicides of teenagers that were bullied across various social sites daily. In 2013, for example, a bunch of suicides were associated to the social network Ask.fm, which is a site where users can ask questions anonymously. The deaths of teens who had been subject to abuse on the site prompted Ask.fm (which was acquired by Ask.com in 2014) to launch new safety efforts.
Despite the fact that tons of investigation has yet to be done to help fully understand the consequences of cyber bullying, researchers have concluded that, victims of cyber bullying show negative reactions which are also common among the victims of traditional bullying. In fact, it could be stated that cyber bullying has even more serious ill effects that that of traditional because victims are not able to escape the grasp or their bullies easily, since these cyber attacks turn permanent after they get introduced to the virtual online universe, students may also experience a long lasting sense of victimization because of continually revisiting the incident, thus resulting in depression and various types of mental malfunctions.
Cyber bullying has been linked to multiple maladaptive emotional, psychological, and behavioural outcomes. The physical and metal effects of cyber bullying vary depending on the victim, but the consequences include low self esteem, anxiety, feeling sad, being scared, feeling embarrassed, depression, anger, truancy, decreased academic achievement, an increased tendency to violate others, school violence, and suicide. There is a relationship between Internet harassment and depressive symptoms, with targets of online harassment reporting more frequent cases than non-targets.
Solution to stop Cyber bullying
Dig in deep to identify the main cause. Bullies in some cases start out as a friend, an ex, or someone who is well known to the victim. If it is possible to have a conversation with the person, than ask him or her to stop. Having the conversation in person would be more effective rather than over text or email.
Ignore the messages sent by the bully. If asking him or her to stop wont work then ignore the messages, emails or attachments that you receive from the bully. Bullies want to squeeze out a reaction from their targets, so replying back to a text from them will most likely only make things worse than they already are.
Block the bully. Immediately put an end to the bully’s most invasive threats by blocking that person from direct communication with you. Once you’ve made sure all prior messages have been saved.
Update your account settings. Prevent the person from finding a new way to contact you by limiting the amount of personal information you make available online
Don’t wait for long to get help from others while facing these kind of situations. The bully might feel he is undetectable or no one can find him if you take too long to respond. Hence, patience is not an option at least for this condition.
Various service providers have rules implied upon bullies so you should carefully review the policies of your service provider and report the bully to them.
In some cases help against cyber bullying can also be taken from law enforcements. If the condition gets worse and breaks the rules of the school premises of any other rights then the best option would be to get help from the local police department.
Cyber bullying is a tremendously large problem amongst the teens nowadays. It not only effects the victims but its consequences have an higher reach which can affect the loved ones and the peers of the victim. Cyber bullying may be a far greater threat to the youngsters than we consider it to be. The data I found on the web from the experts concludes that every 1 in 3 teens are cyber bullied.
Parents, governmental bodies and the society as a whole must come up together as one if we are to stop this problem that haunts teenagers all around the globe. Together lets make the web a bit more safe for the youngsters who use it daily.
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