While this is good news for being able to make plans with friends or catch up on the latest celeb news and footie scores, it can also provide a digital platform for bullies to target their victims.
Because it takes place in the virtual world, cyber bullying has a 24/7 nature and can make someone feel upset or threatened in their own home.
Cyber bullying includes:
- sending threatening or abusive texts or messages
- creating and sharing embarrassing images or videos
- 'trolling' - the sending of menacing or upsetting messages on social networks, chat rooms or online games
- excluding children from online games, activities or friendship groups
- setting up hate sites or groups about a particular child
- encouraging young people to self harm
- voting for or against someone in an abusive poll
- creating fake accounts, hijacking or stealing online identities to embarrass a young person or cause trouble using their name
- sending explicit messages, also known as sexting
Just because cyber bullies are hiding behind a computer screen, what they’re doing is still wrong.
If you feel unsafe when you go online, you should always tell someone – whether that be a parent, guardian, teacher or other responsible adult. If you think a friend is being bullied, you can always tell someone on their behalf.
Remember, it’s not nice to make someone feel threatened or scared, either in real life or online. Bullying is wrong and can have serious consequences.