Bullying: not just face to face

Has anyone seen this?

Who’s the bully here? The small guy (Ritchard Gale), or the big guy (Casey Heynes)?

Well, whatever the reason was, I’d like to draw your attention to a bigger issue.

This is bullying that occurs in everyday life. It was fortunately/unfortunately, caught on video.

With the internet, have we brought bullying to another level? Cyber bullying has occurred in many places online. Random trolling on the internet, leaving nasty comments on blogs, forums. Even on formspring, where users get to ask questions, and remain anonymous. Or tumblr, maybe even blogging platforms like wordpress.

The worst part? You’re able to remain anonymous. When you hide behind a screen, anything is possible.

Like the song, Santa Monica, by Savage Garden

“But on the telephone line I am anyone
I am anything I want to be
I could be a supermodel or Norman Mailer
And you wouldn’t know the difference
Or would you?”

You’re able to leave comments that can hurt, you’re able to be an imposter, act as someone else, and hurt somebody.

Does the phrase “sticks and stones may break my bones but words can never hurt me” still apply in today’s context?

People have committed suicide due to cyber bullying. For various reasons too. Sexual preference, looks, family background, social status.. the list is never-ending. You can read http://www.truecrimereport.com/2010/01/phoebe_prince_15_commits_suici.php and http://www.momlogic.com/2010/03/soccer_star_commits_suicide_over_cyberbullying_formspringme.php

This doesn’t just happen to children. A friend of mine, was being cyber bullied. At her workplace. Yes, it even takes place with adults. Some of her colleagues started a facebookgroup, asking people to boycott her. Now, however the problem may be, or seem to be, bullying should never take place. Much less cyber bullying. It’s anonymous, cowardly. A fellow colleague who knew about the group, told my friend about it, and somehow, my friend’s boss got to know about the issue too. I don’t know how grown ups deal with issues like these, but I hope that something can be done.

How then, are we able to stop cyber bullying? Are we even able to stop it? Or, if it’s not possible, should we educate children from young, on how to react to bullying, and cyber bullying? Should they be educated on the consequences of their actions?

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4 responses to “Bullying: not just face to face

  1. The bullies in the incident with that video were the elite media institutions who took advantage of the kids to get some ratings. The scary thing about online bullying and anonymity is there is no way to stop it. There are always some people who have to be mean unfortunately. what we can try and control is how people react and try to take the power out of it

    • hey! yes i do agree that the biggest threat is anonymity.. perhaps in classes we should learn about how to deal with social issues like these and not just focus on academia.

  2. Yeah you’re right Charmaine, bullying has become too much in society today. With the increasing access to media, bullying seems to be upstoppable, particularly as there are many ways in which people can go about it. Online, or cyberbullying as its known, is making it even harder to stop. Though it may be very difficult to completely eradicate the problem, you have raised a valid question… if it cant be stopped, we must educate and raise this issue to children really early on in life, when they can understand and before this act becomes apparent in their lives. Learning how to defend yourself, treat one another with respect and raise confidence levels in kids can potentially be all it takes in changing this cycle. Implement it in schools and learning programs or online services as it is one of the most horrible acts in society so we must do everything we can to change this pattern for good. People as young as junior high are committing suicide over bullying or are scarred for life, so it only reiterates the fact that this is a very important issue in society, one that should be effectively managed and dealt with properly.

    • Hey! I agree with your points, especially when people are committing suicide over bullying, it just isn’t worth it! the poor child had no knowledge on how to defend him/herself.. and yes, i’m guessing that the increasing access to media has made bullying a whole new “past time” on the internet

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