Psychologist Claims Cyberbullying Concerns are Exaggerated

I can’t believe a psychologist would go on record claiming that the recent attention on cyberbullying is overstated:

Old-style face-to-face bullying is still the way most young people are victimized, even though it’s cyberbullying that seems to get all the headlines, an international bullying expert told psychology professionals Saturday.

Reports of a cyberbullying explosion over the past few years because of increasing use of mobile devices have been greatly exaggerated, says psychologist Dan Olweus of the University of Bergen in Bergen, Norway. He says his latest research, published this spring in the European Journal of Developmental Psychology, finds not many students report being bullied online at all.

“Contradicting these claims, it turns out that cyberbullying, when studied in proper context, is a low-prevalence phenomenon, which has not increased over time and has not created many ‘new’ victims and bullies,” the study finds.

The reason that such attention has been devoted to cyberbullying awareness is three fold:

1. Cyberbullying numbers are growing. Why should we dismiss something until it becomes a problem we are not prepared for?

2. Cyberbullying is, more than likely, the most destructive for of bullying. Unlike face-to-face bullying that happens in schoolyards and parks amongst a finite group of people, cyberbullying penetrates the safest room (the victim’s bedroom) and can be easily disseminated to an audience of thousands.

3. Teachers can deal with school bullying. It is much harder for significant adults to monitor cyberbullying.

Cyberbullying should never be diminished in any way.

Click on the link to read Social Media: A Playground for Bullies

Click on the link to read Teachers Who Rely on Free Speech Shouldn’t be Teachers

Click on the link to read Bullying is Acceptable when it’s Directed to a Teacher

Click on the link to read Punish Bullies and Then Change Your Culture

 

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