• Youth are oblivious to the effects of cyberbullying

    Date: 10.20.11 | by Judge Tom.

    Cyberbullying Statistics

    Statistics show that the cyberbullying problem is not getting better and that more youth are becoming victims of online bullying. In a recent poll* of young people between 14 and 24 years-old, 56% report being targeted by some form of online bullying, harassment or taunting. Reports of people being mean to each other on social networking websites has jumped 10% since 2009 – up to 55%.

    The most common complaints about online behavior include people spreading false rumors, the sharing of  messages and photos without permission, and impersonating someone else. According to the Cyberbullying Research Center the victimization rate is 20% to 25% for middle and high school students.

    The poll also collected data regarding the use of offensive names and racial slurs with interesting findings. Words including “fag,” “slut,” “retard” and “that’s so gay” are accepted in everyday parlance among friends because “I know we don’t mean it.” When put online, however, or in a text message, the anonymous reader may be offended. Recent attempts to abolish “retard” or the “R-word” have been unsuccessful. Even the “N-word” gets a pass by a majority of young people. 44% of those surveyed said they would be offended by its use. 35% said it wouldn’t bother them much, while the remaining wouldn’t be offended at all.

    U.S. government logo

    Such language is written off by many as a joke or attempts to be cool. Little thought is given to unintended  consequences or the feelings of the victim or victim’s family. It is when the joke or cool comment is repeated and picked up by a cybermob against one individual that the line is crossed into actionable cyberbullying.

    Sexting Statistics

    One third of those surveyed reported being involved with sexting. Considered by some as this century’s method of flirting, its potential consequences aren’t taken seriously by many young people. However, consider the cases of 13 year-old Hope Witsell or 18 year-old Jessica Logan to see the tragic results of sexting.

    The message here seems to be that only through education and an awareness about consequences of mean-spirited posts will our youth and adults put an end to all bullying: traditional and cyberbullying.

    *Associated Press/MTV poll conducted between August 18 and August 31, 2011 of 1355 people nationwide.

    Judge Tom

    This post was written by Judge Tom. Judge Tom is the founder and moderator of AsktheJudge.info. He is a retired juvenile judge and spent 23 years on the bench. He has written several books for lawyers and judges as well as teens and parents including the recently published 'Teen Cyberbullying Investigated' (Free Spirit Publishing). When he's not answering teens' questions, Judge Tom can be found hiking, traveling and reading.

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


    9 Comments subscribe to these comments.

    • Tulsa Divorce Lawyers
      Thu, 20 Oct 2011 at 06:44

      The world just keeps getting meaner and meaner – we have become desensitized to the effects of cyberbullying.
      That may be, but we can’t give up on trying to educate our youth about unintended and unexpected consequences of mean-spirited and cruel speech.

    • Askthejudge.info
      Thu, 20 Oct 2011 at 07:33

      In a recent poll of young people between 14 and 24 yrs old, 56% report being targeted by some form of online #bullying. http://t.co/OQZZwc3g

    • Askthejudge.info
      Fri, 21 Oct 2011 at 12:45

      New blog post: Youth are oblivious to the effects of cyberbullying http://t.co/s9nqklvM

    • AmberWatch SafeText
      Wed, 16 Nov 2011 at 01:20

      Are youth oblivious to the effects of #cyberbullying? http://t.co/kTc4yKet #AmberWatch #SafeText http://t.co/OEsT8E8y

    • ProText Mobility
      Wed, 16 Nov 2011 at 01:20

      Are youth oblivious to the effects of #cyberbullying? http://t.co/nMwbYGSA #AmberWatch #SafeText http://t.co/Qg8TVtPg

    • Askthejudge.info
      Wed, 16 Nov 2011 at 07:29

      RT @ProTextMobility Are youth oblivious to the effects of #cyberbullying? http://t.co/wsz01a2I #AmberWatch #SafeText

    • Askthejudge.info
      Wed, 16 Nov 2011 at 09:12

      RT @AmberSafeText Are youth oblivious to the effects of #cyberbullying? http://t.co/wsz01a2I #AmberWatch #SafeText http://t.co/0I6MbVyf

    • Children’s Trust
      Sat, 19 Nov 2011 at 12:20

      RT @ambersafetext:Are youth oblivious to effects of #cyberbullying? http://t.co/0duFeMsd #AmberWatch #SafeText http://t.co/odHqpZRw

    • stopcyberbullyingnow
      Fri, 06 Jan 2012 at 10:09

      why do people do this they need to stop I am tried of hearing about people killing themselves and this is why people should keep things to themselves and not tell other people and then more people have there lifes I want to help!
      We agree with you. The more we focus on education and awareness of the issue and teach tolerance and respect, the better off we will all be.

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>