Traditional schoolyard bullying has taken a backseat to an equally, if not moreso, damaging form of bullying – cyberbullying. Much like traditional bullying, cyberbullying involves name-calling, rumors, and other harassment tactics, but unlike face-to-face bullying, online threats tend to go under the radar of adults. The growing online presence of teenagers on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media sites has significantly increased the rate of cyberbullying among today’s youth. Smartphones have also changed the way teenagers communicate and access the Internet. An increase in technology usage has opened the door for more malicious and damaging threats. In fact, more teenagers bully online because it is much harder to get caught by adults. Not only is it easier to get away with, but bullies can also humiliate their victims on a larger scale, often instigating others and ganging up on victims. But even with a wider audience witnessing online bullying, 90% of teens ignore it. Victims are often reluctant to report bullying to their parents or an adult because they’re afraid of being called a snitch.
Bully victims often struggle academically and skip school because they fear seeing their bullies. What’s worse is that one in five cyber-bullied kids thinks about committing suicide and about 4,500 teens actually follow through with it. The graphic below provides a comprehensive look at the issue of cyberbullying and how it is negatively impacting today’s youth.
Source: Accredited Online Colleges