- On the Internet via social networking sites (e.g. Facebook and MySpace), chat rooms, instant messaging, YouTube (a favorite tool of cyber-bullies), websites, and e-mail
- On video game consoles via online multiplayer games
- On cell phones via text messaging, instant messaging, and e-mail
Parents need to increase their awareness about cyber-bullying. Too many parents don't view it as a tangible threat. During one of my Internet Safety presentations, I had a father say "don't you think you are making too big a deal out of this...kids aren't actually hurt by cyber-bullying...you can't punch someone over the Internet." Really? Cyber-bullying results in suicide, depression, eating disorders, poor self-image, etc. Are these not real medical threats? If your child had these conditions as a result of being cyber-bullied, how would you deal with it...by telling them they are making "too big a deal out of it?"
CNN ran a great article today on cyber-bullying. You can read it here. Also, Anderson Cooper, in cooperation with the Cartoon Network, is airing an episode of Anderson Cooper 360 titled "Stop Bullying: Speak Up" tonight (Monday, 10/4) at 10PM EST. I will definitely be watching it and I would recommend all parents do the same.
CNN just posted another good article (interview with the father of a boy that tried to commit suicide after being cyber-bullied) on the subject. Read it here.
Yet another great article from CNN on this topic. Read it here.