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What is cyberbully?

            Bullying that occurs online, such as on computers, tablets, and mobile phones, is referred to as cyberbullying. Cyberbullying can happen online through social media, forums, or gaming where users can read, interact with, or exchange content. It can also happen through SMS, Text, and applications. Sending, posting, or disseminating unfavorable, hurtful, or malicious content about someone else is considered cyberbullying. It can also involve disclosing sensitive or private information about another individual in a way that causes embarrassment or humiliation. Cyberbullying occasionally veers into illegal or criminal action.

            The example of cyberbullying is spreading false information about someone or publishing embarrassing pictures or videos of them on social media, sending hurtful, threatening, or abusive messages, images, or videos through messaging services, or pretending to be someone else and sending hurtful messages to other people on their behalf or through fictitious accounts.

History of Cyberbullying

            With the introduction of accessible personal computers in the 1990s, traditional bullying made its way onto the internet. Since then, peers and even complete strangers have harassed kids and teenagers online in open chat rooms or on private messaging services. Because of its anonymity, the internet offered the ideal pretext for users to intimidate or harass others without suffering many repercussions.

            Around the middle of the 2000s, when smartphones became the newest must-have item, cyberbullying really took off. Teenagers might send text messages and images from their phones to anyone.

            Lately, cyberbullying happens on a variety of social media sites and applications. Within hours, a 10-second Snapchat post can go viral on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Videos uploaded to YouTube can be viewed and commented on by anyone in the world. Due to the posts’ extreme prominence, victims are frequently the target of millions of people.

            One of the first incidents was in 2007, when 13-year-old Tina Meier committed suicide as a result of her neighbors harassing her by creating a fictitious Myspace profile using the name "Josh Evans." The culprits were convicted of conspiracy and unlawful computer usage by a federal grand jury, but they were ultimately exonerated. Meier's case led Missouri, where she was born, to enact harassment legislation that covers online abuse.

Social media in Teenager

            Today’s teen culture is heavily influenced by social media. According to surveys, 90% of youths between the ages of 13 and 17 have used social media. 51% of respondents say they visit a social media site at least once each day, and 75% say they have at least one active social media presence. Teenagers who own mobile devices with internet access account for two thirds of the population. Teenagers spend nearly nine hours every day online on average.            

Teenagers use social media to communicate with their friends. Before social media, teens used to converse after school by hanging around at the bus stop, talking on the phone, or going to the park. Now they just have a different platform.

In the world today, it plays a significant role in connecting and socializing. Teens are increasingly using social media; the main reasons teenagers regularly use social media include having a conversation with friends, interacting with new people, following entertainment news or even when feeling bored.

Teenager gets bullied from her school friend
Cyberbully in word

The reason?

               Cyberbullying occurs for unclear reasons. Several people engaged in cyberbullying out of vengeance. They believe that pestering other people is only normal since some individuals deserve to be tormented because they themselves have experienced bullying in their everyday lives. Sometimes it is insufficient. Some claim that they would begin to seek out new adversaries who appeared to be weaker than themselves. These people only annoy others to amuse themselves and their buddies, who may also be bullies for a high likelihood.

Bullying affects people, and it can cause them to experience stress or sadness. They may feel bewildered and unsure of what to do. At that point, they lose all sense of trust in people and are lonely. The hardest part is when people discover them dead. Many people, including family members, have many unanswered questions. Of course, everyone wants to know who is responsible, so they immediately call the police to investigate it.

This also includes those who use any other kind of gadget. The best course of action if someone is posting disparaging remarks about you on social media is to either deactivate that social network or talk to a friend about it. Those who are jealous of others are one of the reasons why they enjoy bullying them online.

This is why there should be stricter laws against bullying and cyberbullying. Because of this, a great number of innocent people commit suicide and murder. When creating an account on any social media platform, it’s crucial that everyone abides by the rules. There isn’t enough punishment being meted out.

Show the percentage of teenagers who get bullied online.

            According to Pew Research Center “59% of U.S. teens have been bullied or harassed online, and a similar share says it’s a major problem for people their age. At the same time, teens mostly think teachers, social media companies and politicians are failing at addressing this issue.”  

The most common type of harassment youth encounter online is name-calling. Some (42%) of teens say they have been called offensive names online or via their cellphone. Additionally, about a third (32%) of teens say someone has spread false rumors about them on the internet, while smaller shares have had someone other than a parent constantly ask where they are, who they’re with or what they’re doing (21%) or have been the target of physical threats online (16%).

Case Study: Amanda Todd

According to Wikipedia Website “Amanda Michelle Todd was a 15-year-old Canadian student and victim of cyberbullying who hanged herself at her home in Port Coquitlam, British Columbia. Before her death, Todd posted a video on YouTube in which she used a series of flashcards to tell her experience of being blackmailed into exposing her breasts via webcam, and of being bullied and physically assaulted. The video went viral after her death, resulting in international media attention. The video has had 15 million views as of January 2023. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police and British Columbia Coroners Service launched investigations into the suicide.”

Amanda Todd

A girl from Port Coquitlam, British Columbia, committed herself in October 2012 as a result of her battles with bullying and cyberbullying. When Amanda Todd was 12 years old, an older man tricked her into showing her breasts in an internet webcam group chat. That was screenshotted and distributed to all of Amanda’s Facebook friends, which had a negative impact on her life. From that point forward, she was frequently the target of online and in-person threats and insults. These things caused Amanda’s anxiety and depression issues to get much worse. While the image followed her everywhere she went and followed her to several other places and schools, the bullying never ceased. In September 2012, Amanda decided to share a short YouTube video titled “My story: Struggling, bullying, suicide, self-harm” in which she spoken about her experiences with bullying. Then, Amanda Todd committed suicide in her home shortly after on October 10, 2012.

An ongoing issue in the new social media environment was clearly stated by Amanda’s experience. It was a story that unfortunately made it popular on social media and in the mainstream media. People become aware of the negative impacts of bullying and the possibility that one cruel word or web post might push someone to take their own life.

The video of Amanda Todd

How to prevent Cyberbullying

            Children or teenagers may begin to feel hopeless when they are repeatedly harassed by others through social media posts, text messages, instant conversations, and blog posts. They could begin to believe that suicide is the only way to end their suffering. It’s important that parents take action to stop cyberbullying in their children’s life since the hazards involved are so great.

For the parents, if the parents suspect the children is being cyberbullied, the parents should show that will always stay beside the children by giving them support and empathy. Assure them that it is not their fault. To avoid making the children “feel better,” avoid dismissing or minimizing the serious and disturbing aspects of cyberbullying. Avoid attempting to simply prevent your children from using the internet.

For teenagers, kids may help prevent being a victim of cyberbullying by being careful about what they post. Password sharing should be avoided, and users should check that their internet privacy settings are safe. Children should notify their parents about their internet activity and any new connections they make, according to Teenagers are important in the fight against cyberbullying. Children who are aware of the facts of cyberbullying can alert a responsible adult if they see it occurring to someone else. Also, they ought to provide kindness, kindness, and support to the harassed teenager.

Inform an adult you trust immediately if you are concerned about your safety or something that has occurred to you online. A specific hotline that you may contact for free and speak to someone anonymously is available in several countries.  Contact to United for Global Mental Health to find help in your country.

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