ARTICLES, INTERNET SAFETY. FACTS ABOUT CYBER BULLYING
Social Media Bullies – When Facebook Hurts
Cyber Bullying Examples
Any of these sound familiar? Maybe you saw them posted on someone’s Facebook profile.
Maybe they were posted on YOUR profile. Maybe YOU posted them on someone else’s. This is an example of CYBER-BULLYING, here are some fast facts:
Cyberbullying is when you (or someone else):
- Post hateful statuses about someone, whether it be about an individual or an entire group.
- Post inappropriate pictures of someone either an individual or a group (party pictures, etc).
- Post a rude comment on someone’s picture (“you’re so fat”, “eww, fugly”).
- It creates a racist, sexist, homophobic, or generally hateful group targeting someone either an individual or group.
- Uses Facebook or other social networking to socially isolate an individual or group.
- Sends threats or insults via chat or messaging.
Cyberbullying really hits hard because people can get as vicious as they want through a keyboard. They forget that cyberbullying, just like face-to-face bullying, has some pretty nasty effects.
Physical Effects of cyberbullying:
- Disrupted sleep cycle (loss of sleep/too much sleep)
- Drastic appetite changes (never hungry/hungry all the time)
- Poor hygiene
- Use of drugs and alcohol
- Self Harm (cutting). Did you read our article on how to stop self-harm?
- Emotional Effects
- Isolation (feeling alone, lost)
- Abandoned, deserted
- Afraid (will the bullying transition to face-to-face?)
Who Gets Bullied?
This is a good question, and it’s a bit hard to answer. In reality, everyone can get bullied. Boys, girls, young kids, adults, it can happen to anyone. People are targeted for their race, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, income, style, or music tastes.
Do you think you might be a target for bullies? Read our article and learn who bullies target and why.
Who Are The Social Media Bullies?
This is a difficult question with a huge answer. The bullies can be anyone. It’s easier to be a bully online because you don’t have to see what you’ve done firsthand-all you have to look at is your computer monitor and not a real person.
What Do I Do If I’ve Been Bullied?
First step: Don’t retaliate. Step away from the keyboard. Take a deep breath and calm down. Feeling better? Good. Now, delete the message, untag yourself from the picture, do what needs to be done, and block the person. Now that that’s out of the way, tell a parent/guardian, teacher, school counsellor, whoever may be at hand. And most importantly-Don’t let some jerk’s hateful rumours or comments stop you from getting out there and living your life! It’s your life to live, so go out and get the most of it!
Top Ten Rules to Prevent Cyber-Bullying
- Report bullies! Most social networking sites have a report button that reports hateful, racist, or inappropriate posts or pictures to the administrators.
- Think before you post. Even if you’re being friendly, if you think it could be taken the wrong way, don’t post it.
- Watch what you post online, like pictures and statuses. If you’re not sure if it’s appropriate, it probably isn’t.
- Ask permission before posting pictures of someone else online.
- Use privacy settings to limit what is public.
- Don’t accept friend requests from people you don’t know.
- On most social networking sites, you can block bullies and rude people.
- If someone posts something hurtful on your page, delete it. Don’t retaliate.
- If someone threatens to harm you in any way, report them, block them, and tell someone.
- Pledge to yourself and your friends to not participate in or tolerate cyberbullying!
Did you read our article on protecting yourself from cyberbullying?
* The Youth Initiative Committee is made up of local West Central Saskatchewan youth working towards intervention and prevention of peer to peer violence. For more information contact the West Central Crisis and Family Support Centre Inc. at (306) 463-6655.