Cyber Bullying

In recent news I have heard about cyber bullying. As I skim through the articles found on "Examples of Cyber Bullying"; I find that bullies really haven't changed that much just the methods in which they deliver their evil and spread their fear. Children, teenagers mostly, finding new and more cowardly ways to intimidate and slander (or is it libelous) someone else. I have to ask what are these bullies really afraid of? As a teenager I was often called some very nasty names, made fun of because I didn't wear the newest designer clothes and heard some vicious rumors about me which were completely untrue. I always pitied the people who said these things about me, mostly because they did not know me as a person I was just someone who was different, I think that scared them the most. I have learned that it is human nature to fear what is unknown and different. I was also very happy that I was so important to these people that they took time to recognize me as something more than just another face in the crowd!

With today's technology, gathering evidence such as presented on a website or by text of any kind makes putting together a criminal case against the perpetrators easy for the target of such ludicrous behavior. The targets of this kind of cowardly attack should take these kinds of threats very seriously! When presented with evidence of this type of crime everyone has a duty to report it and see that the perpetrators are punished to the fullest extent of the law! At the very least this is mental abuse but could be considered premeditation of serious criminal acts. Most websites have the ability and do track visitors by their IP address, stopping this type of abuse is one of the best ways I can think of to use this technology.

When full registered websites are involved, do a (http://www.whois.net/) search and find out when the site was registered and by whom, print that page for reference later. Go to the website in question and click file -> save page as and print that page also. Contact the company which is hosting the website and inform them that they may be named in the lawsuit if the site is not removed. Document their cooperation or lack thereof. Save all emails and text messages from the attackers, print as many as possible. Contact your local authorities as well as school officials if appropriate and send copies of your evidence to the Federal Communications Commission. Cyber bullying falls into the same category as sending threatening and derogatory (snail) mail and making threatening phone calls! It is illegal and punishable by fine and or jail.

Do these cyber bullies think they are impressing anyone? Who are their friends? What do these cyber bullies say about them when they are not around? Is it really that scary to them that someone may be better at something than they are? Is it because they are jealous of what someone else has? Maybe it is because they are being bullied by someone else and lack the courage, knowledge or resources to get away from their own world of torment!

By Elaine Grimm

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