Category Archives: CYBER-BULLYING

’13 Reasons Why’ faces backlash from suicide prevention advocacy group

A suicide prevention advocacy group is speaking out about the new Netflix original series “13 Reasons Why,” saying that the show — a teen drama centered on a high school student who kills herself — could do “more harm than any good.”

The show, based on a young adult novel of the same name and co-produced by Selena Gomez, revolves around 17-year-old Hannah Baker, who takes her own life and leaves behind audio recordings for 13 people who she says were part of shy she killed herself.

“There is a great concern that I have … that young people are going to overidentify with Hannah in the series and we actually may see more suicides as a result of this television series,” said Dan Reidenberg, the executive director for Suicide Awareness Voices of Education, a nonprofit group with the mission of suicide prevention.

“I’ve heard from others that are really concerned because its so sensational and so graphic that they’re worried about the copycat effect of suicide,” he added.

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Tragedy as ninth grader at a Pennsylvania high school kills herself after a ‘classmate cyber-bullied her’ – becoming the latest victim of online harassment in the classroom

Police are investigating if cyber-bullying pushed a Pennsylvania high school freshman to take her own life.  A student named Julia who attended Spring-Ford High School in Limerick, Pennsylvania died by suicide Thursday night.

Grief counselors at Spring-Ford High School were available for students Friday and Saturday. Police have not publicly identified the victim but there are multiple fundraising pages to support her family that name her.

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With cyber-bullying on the rise, children, women being pushed over the edge (India)

15-year-old Ankush (name changed) had been active on social media ever since he got his hands on a computer. After creating an account on Facebook, bypassing the minimum age criteria, he was soon a part of his school’s online community.

Soon, however, the school canteen was abuzz with gossip as Ankush became the butt of everyone’s jokes and was trolled on a daily basis.

“I have a small face and my hair sticks up, so they called me ‘pineapple face’. I did not mind it as even my seniors called me that. At least they knew about me,” said Ankush.

However, what started as a trickle turned into a flood of incessant trolling, as his bullies made a hate page in his name and photoshopped his face to poke fun at him, reducing his existence to a meme.

That was when Ankush started to cut himself with a blade, frustrated that he could not even talk to his parents about this issue, as he was asked not to open a Facebook profile. “I used to cut my right forearm and conceal it with a sports band. I would show it to my friends, who asked me to stop hurting myself,” he says.

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Police say dozens watched a teen’s sexual assault on Facebook Live — and no one reported it

A 15-year-old girl was allegedly sexually assaulted by multiple suspects, Chicago police said.

The incident was streamed on Facebook Live, the victim’s family said, where police say it was viewed by dozens of people in real time.

Chicago police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi tweeted Tuesday that police are “making good progress identifying persons of interest” in the assault on the teenager, which involved as many as five or six men or boys. The tweet mentioned that interviews are “ongoing” but police have yet to name any formal suspects or make any arrests.

“What’s even more disturbing, more than the fact that they did this, there were so many people that saw this and they didn’t pick up the phone and dial 911,” police Superintendent Eddie Johnson told WGN-TV. “That’s just not right and working on it and [trying] to bring it to a successful resolution.”

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Girls are more affected by cyberbullying

Cyberbullying affects girls more than boys – putting them off school and raising the risk of truancy, according to new research.

Being involved in the modern life scourge – either as perpetrators, victims or both – makes them feel less accepted by their peers, while boys are more able to brush it off.

And this has a knock on effect, spilling over into how important they felt school and learning were, the study found.

With boys, just those who had been a bully as well as a victim, had the same negative attitude.

It follows a government survey that found girls are twice as likely to be ‘cyberbullied’, in which youngsters use technology to harass peers, than boys.

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Facebook takes steps to stop suicides on Live

SAN FRANCISCO — Faced with an alarming phenomenon, people taking their own lives on its live-streaming service, Facebook is stepping up efforts to prevent suicides.

On Wednesday, Facebook announced it will integrate real-time suicide prevention tools into Facebook Live. It also said it will offer live-chat support from crisis support organizations such as the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline and the Crisis Text Line through Facebook Messenger, and make it easier to report suicide or self-injury. The most novel of the new tools: Facebook is testing artificial intelligence to identify warning signs of self-harm and suicide in Facebook posts and comments.

The goal, says Facebook, to connect people in distress with people who can help.

In January, a 14-year-old girl hung herself in her Florida foster home and a 33-year-old aspiring actor shot himself in a car on a Los Angeles street, both on Facebook Live. A young Turkish man who had broken up with his girlfriend told viewers before committing suicide on Facebook Live in October: “No one believed when I said will kill myself. So watch this.”

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How to Prevent Cyberbullying: Hands Off the Keyboard Until You’re Calm!

(NOTE:  This article includes helpful advice from my friend and colleague, Nancy Willard.  — Mike Tully)

Kids have been bullying each other for generations. With the introduction of technology, however, the current generation of teenagers has the ability to expand the reach and extent of their harm. This phenomenon is being called cyberbullying, which has been defined as willful and repeated harm inflicted through the use of communication technologies including text messages, instant messaging, social media, video uploading sites, and even video games. As with traditional bullying, parents and educators are now faced with a new and pressing issue: how to prevent cyberbullying and teach kids to be kind to each other online instead.

According to the Cyberbullying Research Center, 25 percent of teens admit that they have been cyberbullied at some point in their lifetimes. About 17 percent admitted to cyberbullying others. As for middle-school students, 12 percent admitted they had been cyberbullied, while 4 percent said they had cyberbullied others within the previous 30 days.

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Report: Russian teenagers committing suicide in ‘bizarre social media’ game (Warning – Fake News)

(What’s another fake news story in this era? I include this article because a local contact reported to a news group I belong to that it’s a fabrication, invented by Russian authorities and repeated by State-controlled media in May of 2016.  The goal is apparently to generate fear of the Internet that leads to support for increased governmental control and censorship.  But there is no statistical support for the allegations and Russian authorities have only arrested one individual, who has not gone to trial because of insufficient evidence.  But, in case this Russian meme heads your way, you will know it’s bogus. — Mike Tully)

Police in Russia are looking into a flurry of teenage suicide attempts amid panic that teens may have been manipulated by sinister social media groups, reports say.

Local media has cited findings that suggest such attempts are linked to a dark online phenomenon called “Blue Whale” — a game that allegedly asks teens to complete tasks that inflict self harm, like cutting themselves and carving symbols into their skin.

The tasks are said to lead to the final level on day 50, in which teens involved in the game are asked to kill themselves.

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App lets students make anonymous reports about bullying, unsafe behaviour (Canada)

Reporting a bullying incident will soon be almost as simple as sending a text message for students in Toronto’s Catholic school board.

Starting Wednesday, about 30,000 teenagers at the board’s 32 high schools can use a smartphone app to report bullying, cyberbullying, threats, concerns about a classmate’s self-harming behaviour or other safety issues. And they don’t have to identify themselves.

The Anonymous Alerts app “is another tool for students in those situations where people don’t feel comfortable reporting in person,” says Nadia Adragna, a high school principal and member of the Toronto Catholic District School Board’s safe schools department.

“We’re a 21st-century board. We wanted to offer another tool that is familiar to students . . . that they can access to promote a positive school climate.”

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