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Topic : 01/08 Cyber Bullies

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Created on : Friday, January 04, 2008, 02:07:51 pm
Author : DrPhilBoard1
You've heard the saying, “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.” But what happens when someone posts malicious comments about you on the Internet? This trend, known as e-vengeance or cyber bullying, can have deadly consequences. Thirteen-year-old Megan Meier committed suicide after being taunted on MySpace by “Josh,” whom she believed to be a cute teenage boy. Unbeknownst to her parents, Ron and Tina, Josh’s profile was fake, which they believe was created by an adult neighbor to monitor Megan. Was this a case of freedom of speech, or harassment? A state senator proposing anti-cyber-bullying legislation and a First Amendment attorney weigh in. Then, Colorado councilwoman Sandy Tucker made national headlines when she posted a controversial joke online. When the mayor asked her to remove remarks he considered offensive, Sandy refused and then resigned. She doesn't feel the need to apologize and says people need to lighten up. Holly lives in Sandy's town, and joins the show via Web cam to tell the former councilwoman why the joke is no laughing matter. Plus, meet a man who says he's constantly taunted by racist slurs while playing Xbox Live. Join the discussion.

Find out what happened on the show.

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January 5, 2008, 7:19 am CST

Cyber bullies - just like any other bully

Just wondering why there is no legislation on the books for cyber bullies.  We certainly have it in place for someone who harrasses and threatens us in person. This, to me, is the same thing. A computer is easy enough to trace.  Hold the harrassing person responsible; and if it's a child, hold the parents responsible, both legally and financially (court costs, etc).
But in the interim, I think we need to address the sad situation where children are so needy for approval of their peers that they will emotionally crumble (and possibly commit suicide) if they are 'rejected'.  They are being set up for more manipulation by others.  Self esteem does not come from the never ending praise-for-nothing that our society heaps on its children.  Just the opposite. These children have learned to look outward for their self worth.  They have nothing inside to draw upon.  And that is very thin ice; setting them up for situation where an unkind word can bring their entire world toppling down.  Without true self esteem, they will not be able to put their lives back on track after a minor to moderate bump in the road.
Granted, the teen years are full of drama, but without basic self esteem and coping skills, a rough patch can become untenable.

 

 
January 5, 2008, 9:41 am CST

It's not just kids

Quote From: danikat2

Just wondering why there is no legislation on the books for cyber bullies.  We certainly have it in place for someone who harrasses and threatens us in person. This, to me, is the same thing. A computer is easy enough to trace.  Hold the harrassing person responsible; and if it's a child, hold the parents responsible, both legally and financially (court costs, etc).
But in the interim, I think we need to address the sad situation where children are so needy for approval of their peers that they will emotionally crumble (and possibly commit suicide) if they are 'rejected'.  They are being set up for more manipulation by others.  Self esteem does not come from the never ending praise-for-nothing that our society heaps on its children.  Just the opposite. These children have learned to look outward for their self worth.  They have nothing inside to draw upon.  And that is very thin ice; setting them up for situation where an unkind word can bring their entire world toppling down.  Without true self esteem, they will not be able to put their lives back on track after a minor to moderate bump in the road.
Granted, the teen years are full of drama, but without basic self esteem and coping skills, a rough patch can become untenable.

 

Adults engage in this kind of behaviour as well. Please do not minimize the damage that can be done to a person's self-esteem...even a well-balanced person...when he is the victim of a cyberbully. Being attacked so often that you don't want to open your email for fear of another bash, having people who used to be your on-line friends turn against you because of lies, being held up for ridicule (or worse) can eat away at the emotional well being of the strongest person.

 

There was a case of a neighbour who posted pictures and telephone number of a little girl on kiddie porn sites and escalated to posting her address and a statement that she wanted to get rid of her virginity, It turned out to be vengeance on the part of the neighbour who didn't want the child, who had written "hello" on his driveway in chalk, on his property. The child and her parents were traumatized by the attention they got as a result of his postings!

 

It doesn't matter how strong you are, if someone takes it upon himself to destroy your reputation...on line or otherwise...if it goes on long enough, it begins to hurt. For kids who are still searching for their identities and feeling their way towards knowing themselves, this can be devastating. Remember when you were 14 and things that you now know are minor and will blow over, were just the end of the world to you.

 

Not only should legislation be implemented to prosecute these bullies, websites that allow this kind of abuse (by ignoring or refusing to take action on reports of cyberassaults) should be held liable as well. Right now, many of these places are like the Old West...completely lawless, without consequences, and ruled by the rudest, most aggressive and offensive users. That has to stop!

 
January 5, 2008, 9:45 am CST

Taking on line classes

I have noticed students engaged in on line learning take on the role of cyber bullies. These students who would in normally demonstrate good behavior hide or think it is safe once on line to become rude to other students and make inappropriate comments. The key words are attack and demoralize.
 
January 5, 2008, 10:28 am CST

You can't take everything someone says to heart...

     This is just the way some people are. I think it makes them feel good about themselves by making others feel bad or try to. They must not like themselves-I feel that if they didthey wouldn't want to hurt others. But, on the other hand, we don't need to take what every one else thinks and says about us to heart. We should know ourselves and be confident in who we are. This way when someone does try to tell us that we're fat, ugly, stupid, dumb, etc. - it won't phase us at all because we know who we are and GOD didn't make any one of us like this. Everyone is beautiful, but their ways may not be. Some people just get off on making others feel inferior to them. That's the only control they may have-because they can't control themselves. Just remember, GOD made us all, but we choose to be the way we are...
 
January 5, 2008, 11:08 am CST

01/08 Cyber Bullies

A student at our high school created a MySpace account in the name of one of our teachers, putting pictures of playboy bunnies on it. She knew nothing about it. He claimed he wanted to be in control of what was said about her--supposedly. It took about a week to get the site shut down. He got out-of-school suspension, then service-learning for one week. The day he came back, which was the last week of school before Christmas break and the day before finals began, he decides to see if the little saws used in the drafting class to make their balsa wood houses would cut someone. So he cut a boy's arms--twice! Of course, the child he cut allowed him to cut him--it was not done against his will.

 
January 5, 2008, 11:13 am CST

Doctor Phil Show

Bullies Cyber Doctor Phil. That one I never heard before. But I will watch it on Tuesday Janurary 08th,--------

2008. See you on Tuesday Janurary 08th, 2008. Sincerley Your. Russell Vlaanderen.------------------------------ 

 
January 5, 2008, 12:16 pm CST

WHY???

I am wondering WHEN are parents going to take responsibility for the actions of these "children". It seems to me that with all of the technology available today, that someone needs to rein in what they are doing, and who they are doing it with. I do not agree with cyber bullying, but, just where do we get the idea that it is okay for our children to spend 25 hours a day on the internet? Either texting on phones, or "myspace" which as far as I am concerned is a divice of the devil. It gives way to much information to any and everyone. Plus, it plays into the hands of anyone who is out to make trouble, get even, get personal information, and most of todays "children" are to narcisistic to believe it will happen to them. So PARENTS, wake up and smell the coffee. It is your responcibity to see that these things do not happen. Of course we are dealing in todays society with the groups from the "60s', and we know how that went. They did not know what was going on then, and surely are not prepared to know what is happening now.

 
January 5, 2008, 1:05 pm CST

serious issue

I am waiting in anticipation for this episode to air because the focus is on my thesis topic. I explored the impact of technology on bullying for my undergraduate thesis paper. What I leaned fro my research is that cyber bullying is typically a continuation of traditional bullying in the sense that usually involves the same individuals who are engaging in the behavior at school. However because of the inherent nature of the Internet the short and long term consequences of cyber bullying warrants increased concern. What I found most troubling was that cyber bullyig is much more difficult to prevent and combat for two specific reasons. The first reason is because it is harder to identify those involved because of the anonymity of the net and because youth involved are more hesitant to report it out of fear that they will lose access to or have their Internet access restricted.
 
January 5, 2008, 1:10 pm CST

I agree

Quote From: violetmay

Adults engage in this kind of behaviour as well. Please do not minimize the damage that can be done to a person's self-esteem...even a well-balanced person...when he is the victim of a cyberbully. Being attacked so often that you don't want to open your email for fear of another bash, having people who used to be your on-line friends turn against you because of lies, being held up for ridicule (or worse) can eat away at the emotional well being of the strongest person.

 

There was a case of a neighbour who posted pictures and telephone number of a little girl on kiddie porn sites and escalated to posting her address and a statement that she wanted to get rid of her virginity, It turned out to be vengeance on the part of the neighbour who didn't want the child, who had written "hello" on his driveway in chalk, on his property. The child and her parents were traumatized by the attention they got as a result of his postings!

 

It doesn't matter how strong you are, if someone takes it upon himself to destroy your reputation...on line or otherwise...if it goes on long enough, it begins to hurt. For kids who are still searching for their identities and feeling their way towards knowing themselves, this can be devastating. Remember when you were 14 and things that you now know are minor and will blow over, were just the end of the world to you.

 

Not only should legislation be implemented to prosecute these bullies, websites that allow this kind of abuse (by ignoring or refusing to take action on reports of cyberassaults) should be held liable as well. Right now, many of these places are like the Old West...completely lawless, without consequences, and ruled by the rudest, most aggressive and offensive users. That has to stop!

Dr Phil has had two women on his show last year who developed websites where women can go to bash their ex's. Those types of sites are no different than the blasfulmus websites started by students. Why is that we hold younger people to a higher standard that we our selves as adults are not willing to live up to. I would have loved t know what that those women think about youth who cyber bully and how they than justify that their websites are different.
 
January 6, 2008, 11:30 am CST

I Don't Get It

I have 2 teenagers and we have talked about "cyber bullies" and we agree that it is nonsense. My kids know that it occurs in "cyberspace" and therefore it isn't real...they just ignore it.  The media has made a frenzy over this.  If it's a big concern; then parents need to take control of the computer.
 
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