Cyberbullying is still a major issue. It's been over 4 years since I've written on this subject. While there is perhaps more visibility, the basic problems haven't changed.
Based on the above benchmark, at first glance, bullying appears to be trending down over the past decade.
While there have been some high-profile cases over the years, this is a real, current and ongoing issue.
The problem with the US Census figures is that they don't line up with other studies. For example, this data from the Cyberbullying Research Center tells a different story.
There is a need to get useful and accurate data on this for 2 reasons: to quantify the issue to know how prevalent it is so that resources will be put to solutions, and; so that victims know that they aren't alone.
Good data will help understand which solutions work, and how well.
So, while the experts work out the stats, let's look at some tips
- Keep a safe and open environment for your kids. Make sure they know that they can come to you to talk about any issues.
- Make sure that your kids know it is not ok to participate in any kind of bullying.
- Learn about your kid's technology - sometimes that's easier said than done.
- Check with your school about their technology and social media policies.
Here are some great additional tips and resources:
- The Hero Construction Company - website and twitter feed,
- Stop Bullying.gov website,
- Nation Crime Prevention Council website,
- 11 Facts About Cyberbullying link,
- Common Sense Media website
- Stomp Out Bullying website
- The Bully Project http://www.thebullyproject.com/
- Connect Safely http://www.connectsafely.org/cyberbullying/