Cyberbullying and Social Media Victims, Cyberstalking Online Threats and Harassment are a real problems cause real injuries pain for victims and their families. The victims, usually using social medial or text messages,
What Is Cyberbullying and injuries caused by Social Media?
cy·ber·bul·ly·ing /ˌsībərˈbo͝olēiNG/ – noun – the use of electronic communication to bully a person, typically by sending messages of an intimidating or threatening nature.
Cyberbullying is bullying that takes place over digital devices like cell phones, computers, and tablets. Cyberbullying can occur through SMS, Text, and apps, or online in social media, forums, or gaming where people can view, participate in, or share content. Cyberbullying includes sending, posting, or sharing negative, harmful, false, or mean content about someone else. It can include sharing personal or private information about someone else causing embarrassment or humiliation. Some cyberbullying crosses the line into unlawful or criminal behavior.
The most common places where cyberbullying occurs are:
- Social Media, such as Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and Tik Tok
- Text messaging and messaging apps on mobile or tablet devices
- Instant messaging, direct messaging, and online chatting over the internet
- Online forums, chat rooms, and message boards, such as Reddit
- Online gaming communities
“The company’s leadership knows how to make Facebook and Instagram safer, but won’t make the necessary changes because they put their astronomical profits before people.” – Frances Haugen, Facebook whistleblower, Testimony before the U.S. Senate Commerce Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Tuesday, October 5, 2021
U.S. SENATOR MARSHA BLACKBURN, REPUBLICAN FROM TENNESSEE
“The research was Facebook’s internal research. So they knew what they were doing, they knew where the violations were and they know they are guilty.”
“Facebook is not interested in making significant changes to improve kids’ safety on their platforms, at least not when that would result in losing eyeballs on posts or decreasing their ad revenues.” U.S. Senate Commerce Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Tuesday, October 5, 2021
U.S. SENATOR RICHARD BLUMENTHAL, DEMOCRAT FROM CONNECTICUT
“The damage to self-interest and self-worth inflicted by Facebook today will haunt a generation.”
“Big Tech now faces the Big Tobacco jaw-dropping moment of truth.”
“Our children are the ones who are victims. Teens today looking in the mirror feel doubt and insecurity. Mark Zuckerberg ought to be looking at himself in the mirror.” U.S. Senate Commerce Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Tuesday, October 5, 2021
Pennsylvania anti-bullying laws include the following definitions of bullying and cyberbullying:
“Bullying” shall mean an intentional electronic, written, verbal or physical act, or a series of acts:
(1) directed at another student or students;
(2) which occurs in a school setting;
(3) that is severe, persistent, or pervasive; and
(4) that has the effect of doing any of the following:
(i) substantially interfering with a student’s education;
(ii) creating a threatening environment; or
(iii) substantially disrupting the orderly operation of the school.
24 Pa. Stat. § 13-1303.1-A (2008)
§ 2709. Harassment.
(a) Offense defined.–A person commits the crime of harassment when, with intent to harass, annoy or alarm another, the person:
(1) strikes, shoves, kicks or otherwise subjects the other person to physical contact, or attempts or threatens to do the same;
(2) follows the other person in or about a public place or places;
(3) engages in a course of conduct or repeatedly commits acts which serve no legitimate purpose;
(4) communicates to or about such other person any lewd, lascivious, threatening or obscene words, language, drawings or caricatures;
(5) communicates repeatedly in an anonymous manner;
(6) communicates repeatedly at extremely inconvenient hours; or
(7) communicates repeatedly in a manner other than specified in paragraphs (4), (5) and (6).
(a.1) Cyber harassment of a child.–
(1) A person commits the crime of cyber harassment of a child if, with intent to harass, annoy or alarm, the person engages in a continuing course of conduct of making any of the following by electronic means directly to a child or by publication through an electronic social media service:
(i) seriously disparaging statement or opinion about the child’s physical characteristics, sexuality, sexual activity or mental or physical health or condition; or
(ii) threat to inflict harm.
(2) (i) If a juvenile is charged with a violation of paragraph (1), the judicial authority with jurisdiction over the violation shall give first consideration to referring the juvenile charged with the violation to a diversionary program under Pa.R.J.C.P. No. 312 (relating to Informal Adjustment) or No. 370 (relating to Consent Decree). As part of the diversionary program, the judicial authority may order the juvenile to participate in an educational program which includes the legal and nonlegal consequences of cyber harassment.
(ii) If the person successfully completes the diversionary program, the juvenile’s records of the charge of violating paragraph (1) shall be expunged as provided for under section 9123 (relating to juvenile records).