Cyber Connections Cafe\’

Real Stories of People Riding the Internet Wave

Dark side of community – mob cyberbullying

Posted by Jeanette Juryea on August 26, 2006

I am learning about the scope of internet sexuality, and understanding the power of the internet to build community, one aspect of the web that took me by surprise is online bullying. Apparently this is a huge problem for kids. While we don’t yet have stories about this form of Cyber Connection, a quick search on Google turns up many sites specializing in this scourge.

For example, a story in http://www.cyberbullying.org tells about an overweight kid who was undressed in the locker room. Another kid took his picture and started flashing it around from cell phone to cell phone. By the time the boy had finished dressing, half the school knew about the picture. It’s a dark twist on community. They hooked up to hurt someone. What enormous power!! The wave can be used for good or bad, and at either extreme it can carry you along in its surge.

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2 Responses to “Dark side of community – mob cyberbullying”

  1. Don said

    My kids had a lot of cyber bullying going on among their schoolmates last year, but the bullies were acting out in MySpace.

    Their Cathloic grammer school did their homework and found everybody’s MySpace and then called in the parents of every kid whose MySpace contained offensive material.

    It was kinda funny to see some of the “Not my child!” parents have to swallow their pride when shown the evidence in multimedia fashion. The school called a big meeting and brought in an expert to demonstrate to the parents how MySpace worked and to show them how easy it was between the various linkages unique to MySpace, how a predator could figure out how to find their child.

    The expert was also able to demonstrate to the parents the ways kids were ganging up on other kids and the mean-spirited nature of the attacks.

    The upshot was, it took the bullies out of Cyberspace and put them back in the schoolyard where their behavior could be more closely monitored. It also gave a bunch of parents a wakeup call to some issues brewing at home, providing them with the opportunity to look deeper into the cause of their childrens’ behaviors and address them in a helthy way.

  2. Stewart said

    I have seen a lot of this going with the teens in my school. Most of the bullies have been girls, sending nasty things to other girls.

    The internet is a dangerous play thing when it drops inhibitions and lets loose such unbridled nastiness.

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