Cyberbullying: Are you part of the problem or a part of the solution?

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Bullying in the news

Recently, Malaysia was rocked with the assault and murder of T.Nhaveen, an 18 year old that suffered a heinous beating and humiliation at the hands of his ex- classmates, who are on trial now and are facing the death sentence.

While bullying is a common occurrence here in Malaysia and around the world (although it shouldn’t be), this particular case was especially atrocious because the poor boy was sodomized and humiliated in such a way that even animals would have been disgusted. While everyone is vehemently expecting for the assailants to be sentenced to their deaths immediately, I, on the other hand, have been analyzing bullying from a much larger scope.

It is no secret that bullying exists within the ACG community, but it has transformed in recent years to cyber bullying. Cyberbullying is rampant in most communities, but I feel it has a more malicious tone and intent in the ACG community. Before we delve deeper into what makes cyberbullying such a serious issue, we should start off with a definition first for those who are unaware of this matter.

 

Definition of cyberbullying

Cyberbullying is defined as bullying that takes place using electronic technology. Electronic technology includes devices and equipment such as cell phones, computers, and tablets as well as communication tools including social media sites, text messages, chat, and websites.

Yes, that means text messages, chat forums and social media chat logs which contains embarrassing pictures, videos, websites, or even fake profiles all fall under this category. Chances are, you and me both have done this before, but what makes bullying evident is the degree of frequency it happens at. While name calling once in awhile can be taken as a joke or fooling around, consistent name-calling is a form of bullying, whether it is in real life or online.

 

Effects of cyberbullying

While technology itself is not the root of this problem since bullying has existed way before the computer and Internet was created, the negative aspect of technology is quickly catching up to its merits. Cyberbullying has a number of effects as chronicled below.

  • Usage of drugs and alcohol as a means to release stress
  • Smoking as a method of being seen as a non-bully victim
  • Increased chances of playing truant with parents
  • Perform poorly in school
  • Fear of attending school or other activities
  • Leads to poor mental health overall
  • May lead to deteriorating physical health
  • Results in having severe low self-esteem
  • Translates into real life bullying

These are all severe effects that can permanently damage the quality of anyone affected by it. Hopefully this article has given some insight on the seriousness of this issue as the next installment deals with the difference with cyberbullying and real life bullying, methods to stay away from cyber bullies and steps on how to overcome cyberbullying.

Till then, stay gold!

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