Stay informed with daily news and our newsletters!Learn more
|Home||Digital & Media Literacy||Research & Policy||Teacher Resources||Blog||About Us|
Both schools and homes should create an online agreement or contract for computer use, with input from students or children. Make sure your agreement contains clear rules about ethical online behaviour. Research has shown that bullying rates drop when kids know that it is against the rules and how to report it. With younger children who visit games sites, rules should deal with online interaction: never provide personal information and don’t share passwords with friends.For teenagers, online social activity is intense.
One of the most famous images of online life is the New Yorker cartoon captioned “On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog.” The cartoon, published in 1993, was hugely influential in fixing an image in the public imagination of the Internet as a place where anonymity reigned. It did not take long for that humorous view of anonymity to take on a darker cast, as parents began to fear that Internet predators would use this invisibility to lure their children in the guise of twelve-year-old girls.
Targets and Perpetrators
There is a close relationship between targets and perpetrators in cyberspace. In a 2009 Canadian study, half of youth who admitted to cyberbullying said they did so because they had been bullied first.  It’s not at all unusual for both parties in a cyberbullying scenario to see themselves as victims.
With all the recent attention focused on stories of teenagers charged with distributing child pornography for taking sexually suggestive pictures of themselves, jobs lost due to Facebook and MySpace entries, and libel suits over blog posts, people are justifiably concerned about the permanence of material posted to the Internet. Many a teacher or parent has had to carefully explain to children or teens that whatever they post online might be seen by people other than the intended audience, and might be out there for a very long time.