Cyber bullying refers to threatening, lying or harassing a person through various electronic communication devices such as cell phones or computers. Cyber bullies harass their victims through emails, instant messages, text messages, blogs, and posting embarrassing information about a person to a website.
Today, the issue of cyber bullying is treated as a serious problem because many people are able to gain access to the internet (Kowalski, Limber, & Patricia, 2012).
The behaviours that should be described as cyber bullying include sending harassing messages, impersonating other people in order to gain the victim’s trust, posting other people’s personal information, and posting doctored pictures which belong to a certain person (Li, Cross, & Smith, 2012).
Therefore, the goal of this paper is to analyse who the victims of cyber bullying are and the influence it has on them.
Cyber bullies target all kinds of people who have access to the internet. They can target senior government officials, organizational managers, teachers, parents, children and teens.
However, cyber bullying has a direct impact on children and teens. It also impacts on their their parents, teachers and friends based on the actions that the victims take after encountering cyber bullies.
Cyber bullying is a serious offense because it makes the victims practice low self-esteem. The victims’ parents get stressed thereby making them encounter losses if the victims hurt themselves as a result of being bullied on the internet.
Cyber bullying is known to impact young people in a significant manner. Studies reveal that more than one third of young people who get subjected to cyber bullying do not talk about the incidence (Li, Cross, & Smith, 2012).
As a result, there are fears that the issue of cyber bullying will continue to rise as technology advances. In a research that was commissioned by Diana Award Children’s Organization, it is evident that 38 percent of young people have been victims of cyber bullying or they know someone who got involved in such a situation (Kowalski, Limber, & Patricia, 2012).
Therefore, the research demonstrates that more effort needs to be made in order to help protect young people from cyber bullying because it causes low self-esteem and less confidence in the activities that they undertake in their daily lives.
Children and teens are easy targets for cyber bullies since they do not have sufficient knowledge to help them in determining whether the people that they interact with over the internet are genuine. The advancement in cell phone and computer technology has made it possible for cyber bullies to gain a 24-hour access to the internet.
This has made it easy for them to conduct their online activities in a more efficient manner. As a result, they are now able to convince their targets in a more effective manner thereby making them to fall prey to their online activities easily (Shariff, 2010).
Online harassment is an issue that worries many people all over the world. In this case, cyber bullies torment other people with hateful and hurtful text messages, emails, blogs, and instant messages. These forms of harassment offend, humiliate, and intimidate victims severely.
Online harassment affects children, students, parents, teachers, and organizational managers. Cyber bullies also ruin the reputation of their victims thereby making them feel as if they are worthless. They normally target reputable people in a society by giving false information about them (Kowalski, Limber, & Patricia, 2012).
Cyber bullies have the habit of impersonating other people. In this case, they entice their victims to tell them about their private problems. They pretend to be friends with the victims so that they can give them their personal information.
This issue is common among teens aged from 18-24. Trickery is also a common practice among cyber bullies. In this perspective, they may tell the public that a certain person is a homosexual.
They normally do this by publishing the information on fake websites or by editing their victims’ online profiles. This is humiliating especially if the victim is a politician, a teacher, or a person who heads a reputable organization (Shariff, 2010).
There are those cyber bullies who prevent other people from participating in online discussions especially if they have not been online for a long time. This behaviour is common among teenagers since they are the ones who love participating in online discussions.
Cyber stalking is also common among teenagers. In this case, cyber bullies follow the online activities of their victims by visiting any sites that they visit and posting in the sites that they post (Shariff, 2010). This is a humiliating activity and it forces many people to refrain from participating in online activities.
From the analysis therefore, it is evident that cyber bullying is common among young children and teens. As a result, it is important for parents, guardians and teachers to ensure that they monitor the activities that teens and children conduct on the internet in order to ensure that they are safe.
Kowalski, R M, Limber, S P & Patricia, W A 2012, Cyberbullying: Bullying in the Digital Age, John Wiley & Sons, New York.
Li, Q, Cross, D & Smith, P K 2012, Cyberbullying in the Global Playground: Research from International Perspectives, John Wiley & Sons, New York.
Shariff, S 2010, Truths and Myths of Cyber-Bullying: International Perspectives on Stakeholder Responsibility and Children’s Safety, Peter Lang, New York.