Blog and Articles.

The Role of Parents in Preventing Bullying and Cyberbullying

Parents and guardians have always had a powerful influence on the behaviors of children, while research is clear that peers tend to have more sway during the teenage years. That said, our new research published in the Journal of Child and Family Studies identifies that certain positive parenting practices have a strong effect on both…

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Facebook rebrands as “Meta;” disables facial recognition capabilities

In late October, Facebook announced that it would change its name to Meta, signaling a shift of the social media giant’s focus toward the metaverse, a virtual space where social media, gaming, augmented reality, virtual reality, and cryptocurrencies converge and allow people to interact virtually with one another. It’s a relatively new concept in technology…

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District Court Enjoins Controversial Texas Social Media “Censorship” Law

Over the past several years, Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, the federal law that provides social media platforms with immunity from liability for user content and was once hailed as “the law that gave us the modern Internet,” has gone from relative obscurity (at least outside of tech circles) to being a household…

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Social Links: Embedding social media posts can be considered copyright infringement…but is it?

Social Links is our ongoing series here at Socially Aware that rounds up current developments at the intersection of social media, policy, research, and the law. Embedding social media posts can be considered copyright infringement…but is it? A Manhattan federal judge ruled in August 2021 that the practice of embedding social media posts on third-party…

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Cyberbullying in 2021 by Age, Gender, Sexual Orientation, and Race

In May-June 2021, we collected new data from a nationally representative sample of 2,546 US youth between the ages of 13 and 17 to better understand their positive and negative experiences online. This is the type of research we do on a regular basis, and it helps us to keep our finger on the proverbial…

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Preventing Cyberbullying: Top Ten Tips for Adults Who Are Being Harassed Online

(For a formatted .pdf version of this article for distribution, click on the image above [or click here]). Spanish Translation Available Here Here are a few ideas on how to prevent adult online harassment: 1. STAY UP TO DATE WITH PRIVACY SETTINGS, Social media sites and programs are modifying and updating their privacy settings frequently.…

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Responding to Cyberbullying: Top Ten Tips for Adults Who Are Being Harassed Online

(For a formatted .pdf version of this article for distribution, click on the image above [or click here]). Spanish Translation Available Here Here are a few ideas for what to do when adults are being cyberbullied: 1. DO NOT RETALIATE. Those who cyberbully want you to react. The problem is that if you respond angrily,…

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New “Two-Click Cancellation” Button – German Exceptionalism for Subscription Terminations

As part of the new Fair Consumer Contracts Act, [Gesetz für Faire Verbraucherverträge; published in the Federal Gazette (Part I) no. 53/2021, p. 3433 et seq., full text publicly available (in German) Germany will soon require specific cancellation/termination mechanisms for consumer subscriptions. These mechanisms come on top of the updated EU-wide consumer contract rules under…

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Cyberbullying Warning Signs

Spanish Translation Available Here Cyberbullying impacts at least one out of every five middle and high school students. Many of those who experience it don’t tell anyone. If a child displays any of these signs, he or she might be involved. However, not all youth who are cyberbullied or who cyberbully others will display these…

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Social Media, Cyberbullying, and Online Safety Glossary

In our Glossary below, we define the terms you need to know in the realm of social media, cyberbullying, and online safety, so that you are increasingly informed about technological jargon as you work with the youth under your care. (Apart from the list below, you can also download a distributable PDF of our Social…

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Flash Mobs and Lip-Dubs to Combat Bullying

I was talking with an educator last week about enlisting students to help create a healthy, thriving, and fun school climate, and specifically brought up the idea of flash mobs and lip-dubs. Many of our students have talents and abilities which we should really tap in order to help us promote positive attitudes and behaviors across our campus. Unfortunately, we don’t do this often enough, even though student voice is such a powerful thing and can make way more of an impact than the efforts of well-meaning adults. A flash mob is a large group of people who suddenly break into synchronized song or choreographed dance — sometimes both – in a public place for the purposes of entertainment, artistic expression, or to bring attention to a cause. A lip-dub is a music video where a group of individuals are recorded lip-syncing a song, after which the original audio of the song is dubbed over the video in post-editing. Many students (including myself!) have grown up in dance – whether it’s...

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Bullying, Cyberbullying, and LGBTQ Students

Bullying that specifically targets youth and young adults based on their sexual orientation or gender identity/expression has been a problem for decades. The increased utilization of technology among youth (and, well, just about everyone) has resulted in bullying behaviors moving online. As a result, cyberbullying perpetrated against lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) youth has emerged. It is clear that more can be done to prevent these incidents of hate perpetrated online. This summary explores what the research says about the connection between bullying/cyberbullying and sexual orientation/identity, and discusses relevant strategies that youth-serving adults can implement. Hinduja, S. & Patchin, J. W. (2020). Bullying, Cyberbullying, and LGBTQ Students. Cyberbullying Research Center. Retrieved [insert date], from https://cyberbullying.org/bullying-cyberbullying-sexual-orientation-lgbtq.pdf Download the Guide The post Bullying, Cyberbullying, and LGBTQ...

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Cyberbullying Fact Sheet: Taking Screenshots and Screen Recordings to Preserve Evidence

This Fact Sheet provides you with the instructions on how to create an image or video of what you see on any screen (on any device – your laptop, tablet, gaming console, Kindle, phone, iWatch, etc.) so that evidence of cyberbullying (or any other problematic behavior) can be saved and used for an investigation at school, or to send to a social media or gaming company to get an account taken down, or to give to the police. Securing digital evidence is so critical! Hinduja, S. & Patchin, J. (2021). Cyberbullying fact sheet: Taking screenshots and screen recordings to preserve evidence. Cyberbullying Research Center. Retrieved [insert date], from https://cyberbullying.org/making-cyberbullying-screenshots.pdf Download PDF The post Cyberbullying Fact Sheet: Taking Screenshots and Screen Recordings to Preserve Evidence appeared first on Cyberbullying Research Center.

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Bullying During the COVID-19 Pandemic

One of the questions we have been asked most often over the last 18 months is whether bullying has gotten better or worse since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Early on, there was a concern that cyberbullying incidents in particular would increase as youth were spending more time online. Additionally, many young children were perhaps given premature access to technology with inadequate support or supervision as schools hurriedly moved to virtual educational activities and parents simply needed to survive the extended time children had at home. On the other hand, we have long known that bullying online is often connected to bullying at school and therefore fewer students at schools might translate to fewer problems online. Despite these speculations, however, I’ve mostly had to respond to the question about bullying during the pandemic by saying that we simply don’t know. Recently, though, initial research has emerged to provide some insight about the nature and extent of bullying...

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My Son’s First Phone

I was sitting in the bleachers of my son’s recent hockey practice when another parent came up to me and sheepishly asked: “Does your son have a phone?” “Funny you should ask,” I replied. Coincidentally enough, we gave our son his first full-functioning phone that very day. I don’t think this particular parent knows what I do for a living, so he wasn’t asking “the expert,” he was simply asking another parent. This led to a nice conversation about what I have learned about kids and devices in my research over the years.   As I’ve traveled the world the last two decades speaking with parents about family technology issues, it is without a doubt the most frequently asked question I get: When should I give my child a phone? There is, of course, no easy answer to this question. It depends on a lot of factors, including the child, the parent(s), and the circumstances. Is the child mature enough to handle the responsibility? Are the parents prepared to provide guidance and instruction? Is...

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