We wanted to launch our blog The Crush with a topic that aligns with our campaign to #crushcruelty. We chose cyberbullying because it is a global issue without borders that we can crush together with kindness. At Angel Love, we are taking the lead in standing up to cyberbullies by giving 10% of all net sales proceeds from our first four products to a not-for-profit called HeartMob (Go to The Shop on our site to learn more about these do good virtual cops – they’re crushing it!). With this first blog, we want to raise awareness about the unkind facts of cyberbullying.
The Unkind Facts About Cyberbullying
Cyberbullying is on the rise. It involves the use of communication technologies such as the Internet, social networking sites, websites, email, text messaging and instant messaging to repeatedly intimidate or harass others.
- Sending mean or threatening emails or text/instant messages.
- Posting embarrassing photos of someone online.
- Creating a website to make fun of others.
- Pretending to be someone by using their name.
- Tricking someone into revealing personal or embarrassing information and sending it to others
It is often motivated by anger, revenge or frustration. Sometimes, bullies do it for entertainment, laughs, boredom or to get a reaction. Unlike real life bullying that often ends when the school bell rings, cyberbully offers no reprieve. The threat is constant. In North America alone, half of Americans are affected and one third of Canadian adolescent students have reported being bullied. The facts are shocking:
- Nearly 43% of kids have been bullied online. 1 in 4 has had it happen more than once.
- 70% of students report seeing frequent bullying online.
- 68% of teens agree that cyberbullying is a serious problem.
- 81% of young people think bullying online is easier to get away with than bullying in person.
- 90% of teens who have seen social-media bullying say they have ignored it. 84% have seen others tell cyberbullies to stop.
- Only 1 in 10 victims will inform a parent or trusted adult of their abuse.
- Girls are about twice as likely as boys to be victims and perpetrators of cyberbullying.
- About 58% of kids admit someone has said mean or hurtful things to them online. More than 4 out 10 say it has happened more than once.
- Bullying victims are 2 to 9 times more likely to consider committing suicide.
- About 75% of students admit they have visited a website bashing another student.
- 85% of bullying incidences happen in front of people.
Dangers for Victims of Cyberbullying:
- Social anxiety, loneliness, isolation
- Stress related health problems (e.g., headaches, stomach aches)
- Low self esteem
- School absenteeism and academic problems
- Aggressive behaviours
- Contemplating, attempting, or committing suicide
Dangers for Young Bullies:
- Not knowing the difference between right and wrong
- Delinquency and substance use
- Academic problems and increased school dropout rate
- Sexual harassment and dating aggression
- Gang involvement and criminal adulthood
- Difficulties in their relationships with others
- Being bullied at the hands of others
If you are a victim of bullying
- Walk away or leave the online conversation.
- Keep track of the bullying (write it down and/or save a screenshot of the online message).
- Tell a trusted adult or contact an anonymous Help Line.
- Report the bullying to school administrators.
- Report criminal offences, such as threats, assaults and sexual exploitation to the local police detachment.
- Report unwanted text messages to your telephone service provider.
- Report online bullying to the social media site and block the person responsible.
60% of the time, bullying stops in less than 10 seconds when someone steps in (only if it is safe to do so)
Angels, the only way to #crushcruelty is to live #togetherwithkindness
- If you wouldn’t say it in person, don’t say it online.
- Delete cyberbullying.
- Don’t write it. Don’t Post it. Don’t forward it. Don’t support it.
Be kind to yourself and to others