There is a lot to do before your kid’s school year gets started. Hopefully, having a talk about cyberbullying will be on your to-do list.
According to a recent study by internet security company McAfee, kids are witnessing and sometimes engaging in cyber bullying. Almost one in four of teens claimed to be a target of cyberbullying and two-thirds of all teens have witnessed cruel behavior online, notes the Teen Internet Behavior study.
But only one in 10 parents are aware that their teens could be targets of cyberbullying.
Today’s schoolyard is Facebook, with slightly more than 92% of teens saying cruel behavior takes place on the site. Kids say bullies also make attacks on Twitter (23.8%), MySpace (17.7%) and Instant Messager (15.2%).
But teens will stand up to bullies online. When witnessing others being attacked, 40% of teens have told the person to stop, 20.7% have told an adult but 6.3% joined in. When being attacked themselves, 65.8% of teens responded to the attacker (with 35% responding in person).
Some of these online confrontations are hashed-out in the real world, where 4.5% of teens have been in a physical fight with an online bully, while about 15% avoided school.