Written by Fiona Saul Posted in Internet
Cyber bullying.....what is it?
Cyber bullying is when people use the internet to send nasty and upsetting messages to others.
It can also be done by people using mobile phones, by sending messages and making nasty phone calls.
It can happen to anyone at any time. Social networks should be a place where you can connect with friends, so it can be really upsetting to experience bullying on social networking sites. We often don’t realise at the time what is happening and that it is a form of bullying when it happens to us or someone we know.
It’s never easy to say why someone would start being hurtful to other people. Sometimes we might say or do things that we don’t mean that could upset someone else.
Whatever someone is going through, it is never ok to bully someone else. Sometimes people have their own problems and it makes them feel better to hurt others. It may be that they just want to be popular and think humiliating someone else will make them look better.
Bullying someone over the internet is easier as it means the person doing the bullying can’t see how much it hurts the other person. This means they can feel more distant from what they are doing.
Sending a nasty message or text can be done so quickly that the person doing the bullying might not think about how hurtful it is. Because the person leaving the comments doesn’t have to see the person they are directing the message to, they don’t often realise the impact it can have.
Protecting Yourself Online...
There are lots of ways to stop cyber bullying. Some of the best first steps include:
- Reporting the person who is bullying you
- Blocking the person who is bullying you
- Taking a screenshot of the bullying
- Talking to an adult you trust
- Talking to a member of staff at TCHC
Nobody really likes to think they are involved in bullying and we can often make excuses for the way we treat people. Sometimes this makes it difficult to realise when we are a part of bullying.
Are you a cyber bully?
If you use digital technology to upset, anger or embarrass someone on purpose, this means you are involved in online bullying.
It might be as simple as ‘liking’ a mean post on Facebook or spreading a rumour on Twitter. The person being bullied could feel like you are part of the bullying. It can be really difficult to experience bullying on social networking sites.
Never underestimate the impact that bullying can have on someone else. It can make the person feel really upset and hopeless. The victims of the cyber bullying could blame themselves for the bullying and harm themselves as a result.
Every social network is different and it’s not always easy to know how to deal with online bullying on different sites. Some of these sites are also aimed at those aged 13 and above to help protect young people.
If you’re experiencing bullying on social networks, you can talk to a member of staff at TCHC; remember we are here to support you. We can teach you how to be safe online and help you work out the best way to deal with cyber bullying, or just be there so you can talk things through with someone.
About the Author
Fiona is a Tutor at our King's Lynn hub.