So what is the difference between cyberbullying and bullying?

What is the difference between cyberbullying and bullying?

Bullying is any repeated aggressive behavior that is intentional and involves an imbalance of power or strength. It can take many forms, including physical, verbal, or emotional abuse. Bullying can occur on a playground or in a classroom, or it can occur online, through social media, texting, or other forms of digital communication.

For example:

Cyberbullying specifically refers to bullying that takes place online. This can include sending threatening or abusive messages or images, spreading rumors or false information, or excluding someone from online social groups or activities.

For example:

There are some key differences between bullying and cyberbullying:

  • Location:
    • Bullying typically occurs in person, while
    • Cyberbullying can occur anywhere there is an internet connection
  • Audience:
    • Bullying may be witnessed by a small group of people, while
    • Cyberbullying has the potential to be witnessed by a much larger audience, as messages and images can be shared widely and quickly online.
  • Duration:
    • Bullying may be a one-time event or may occur over a period of time, while
    • Cyberbullying can continue indefinitely, as messages and images can be stored and accessed long after they were originally sent.
  • Anonymity:

    • Cyberbullies may be able to remain anonymous, making it more difficult for victims to identify the source of the abuse and for authorities to take action.

Is cyberbullying common than bullying?

It is difficult to accurately compare the prevalence of cyberbullying and traditional bullying, as different studies may use different definitions and methods of measurement. However, research suggests that both forms of bullying are common and can have serious consequences for victims.

According to a 2019 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in the US:

20% of high school students reported being bullied on school in the past year, and 16% reported being bullied online

A study conducted by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development found that:

15% of teens aged 12-17 reported experiencing cyberbullying in the past year

It is important to recognize that bullying and cyberbullying can occur in any community and can affect people of all ages.

So, what are different types of cyberbullying?

There are many different types of cyberbullying, and the specific tactics used may vary depending on the individual. Here are a few examples of common types of cyberbullying:

  1. Harassing or threatening messages: Sending threatening or abusive messages or images through email, social media, or other online platforms.
  2. Exclusion: Excluding someone from online social groups or activities, such as by unfriending or blocking them on social media.
  3. Impersonation: Pretending to be someone else online to cause harm or embarrassment to the person being impersonated.
  4. Spreading rumors or false information: To harm victims’ reputation or cause them distress.
  5. Posting embarrassing or private information: Sharing embarrassing or private information about someone online without their consent.
  6. Tricking someone into revealing personal information: Tricking someone into revealing personal information, such as passwords or home address, which can then be used to cause them harm or embarrassment.

Warning signs your child is being cyberbullied!

Signs of cyberbullying:

  1. Change in behavior: Your child becomes withdrawn, anxious, or depressed, or if they show a sudden change in behavior
  2. Avoidance of technology: If your child becomes hesitant to use their phone, computer, or if they avoid social media or other online activities
  3. Changes in sleep or appetite: Cyberbullying can have a significant impact on a child’s mental health, and changes in sleep patterns or appetite could be a sign that your child is struggling.
  4. Physical symptoms: Stress and anxiety caused by cyberbullying can manifest in physical symptoms such as headaches, stomach aches, or changes in physical activity.
  5. Decrease in grades or performance: Cyberbullying can interfere with a child’s ability to concentrate and perform at their best, which may result in a decline in grades.

You can read full signs at: 11 warning signs of Cyberbullying – Recognize now before it is too late!

It is important to remember that:

Children may not always feel comfortable talking about it, so it is necessary to pay close attention to changes in behavior

If you suspect that your child is being cyberbullied, it is important to talk to them about your concerns and to provide them with support and resources to help them cope.

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