Well, I’ve got some good news. According to last week’s survey, approximately 70% of those who took the survey have neither bullied anyone on the internet nor been bullied on the internet. However, if you aren’t one of those 70%, don’t feel bad. There were only about 25 responses, so the survey isn’t an accurate reading of the entire school. Still, some people answered that they have been a victim of cyberbullying. So, let’s look at what cyberbullying is…
The No Name Necessary pack offered this definition: “A deliberate put-down of another by use of an online communication source.” The 307’s had a very complete and accurate definition, too: “Cyberbullying is using any type of technology to try and hurt somebody emotionally and mentally.” Car Ramrod got a little more specific by citing the following as sources of cyberbullying: “phones, texting, tweeting, sending embarrassing photos, internet, sending embarrassing photos to youtube, facebook/myspace, posting harassing things on social networks, impersonating someone else on a social network, skype, and webcams.” The formal definition of cyberbullying is intentional and repeated use of computer and cell phone networks by kids and teens to cause harm or distress to other kids and teens, but I think I like what our groups came up with better. If you have a moment, go check out what other groups posted on last week’s blog.
9-12 Warrior Packs
Sometimes you need to go online in order to do homework assignments. You want to have portable electronic devices for networking with your friends. But the more you are online or connected to cell networks, the more likely it is that you will be involved in harassing situations. You may not have posted a single comment – or maybe you did. You may not be the person getting abused or threatened. Yet it is very likely that you have witnessed it. Not everyone reacts the same way, but many teens say that when these kinds of bullying behaviors occur at any time of the day or night, both online and face to face, it can be very depressing.
Check out this story: www.youtube.com/watch?v=iDBiqUWRtMo
It’s true that researchers have found that some teens are not bothered by cyber bullying behavior. However, some report feelings of anger, sadness, or frustration. Because the cyber bullying can take place 24/7, the effects on teens can be very intense.
Consider the following situation: A group of girls were fighting with one of their friends, Beatrice. They created a “Rate Beatrice” group on Facebook. They posted embarrassing photos of Beatrice from middle school and high school and invited hundreds of “friends” to join the group to look at the photos, and tell Beatrice how she stacked up. Cruel and crude comments were posted on the group’s message board. One message said that some girls were planning to beat up Beatrice. At school, Beatrice got text messages on her cell phone saying, “Take a look at what everyone thinks of you.”
Discuss within your pack: How might Beatrice react to this? What advice would you give her about how to cope? What would you do if you were a witness to this?
Today’s Post: Teens are called “early adopters” because they are often the first age group to use new technologies or find new ways to use existing technologies. As a group, make a list of the positives and negatives of social networking sites like Facebook and My Space, messaging, and cell phone technologies. Post your list when you are finished