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Do you think more can be done amongst the youth and young people to combat cyber bullying?

We have already touched on ideas we can stop cyber bullying.

It is seen to be rampant amongst the young, but it also affects young adults (workplace bullying). Misuse of the Internet, especially when the use of the internet and social media is almost ubiquitous in today's wired generation is also becoming increasingly common.

We have all seen various cases of cyber bullying leading to suicide e.g Amanda Todd, Hannah Smith
http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/hannah-smiths-sister-jo-targeted-2133317

I feel that one of the main causes of bullying is apathy amongst the crowds; we are too afraid to intervene in a bullying case for fear of being targeted ourselves.
It has also become common to set up memorial pages on Facebook after a person has died to spread awareness. However, these pages are often also targeted by other bullies and defaced. While we can spread awareness through Facebook 'likes', it often does not do anything to solve the issue.

Just a shout out, what do you all think can be done to create awareness / mitigate the problem? Government policies, school administration, amongst the youth.. etc.
Examples of things done to combat cyberbullying in your own communities / countries would be helpful too!

cheers :)

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    Aug 27 2013: The big thing I'd be looking at is the fact we have a major insecurity culture going around, probably always have. I think people should not be seeing their weakness and limitations as a failure but as a challenge. I have a saying that creativity is 99% failure and 1% truth, you have to be willing to fully embrace failure otherwise you will give up on that 1% of immortality that is waiting for you.

    Too many people have this overwhelming fear of failure, they don't want to look the fool and they have this terrible inner critic, a conditioned guilt, that all combined becomes such a painful thing, so they spend their lives avoiding any potential failure, they end up being mediocre, the biggest failure of all. The greatest people have failed 1000x more than the average person, but no one remembers them for any of that.

    Why do bullies hurt us? Because we are insecure about ourselves, we are instilled with this cultural conditioning for "being accepted" and not failing, "You have to Win" no prizes for second, this competition culture makes us confrontational and stubborn but it also stifles our creativity and our pursuit for understanding.

    I mean it's one thing to always seek to grow as a person and in understanding, to do our best where we can and all that, but is there also the risk of interpreting that as "You are not good enough, be someone better" that we are seeing ourselves as not good enough?
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        Aug 27 2013: I don't expect them to respond the same, the questions not really what kids can do to combat bullying and cyber-bullying, it was asking what we can do, and I presume it means "mature adults" I'm just saying we can take a look at the prevailing culture our kids are living in, can we really change that or is it something beyond our power?

        I think for a start, the child culture is predominantly influenced by the adult culture, yet a lot of the prevailing adult culture revolves around competition and money making, which is understandable, but should that be prioritised as vital over free thinking and personal growth? Maybe it should, I'm not credible enough to answer that question, but I can raise it.
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          Aug 27 2013: I agree Ray, that the child culture is predominantly influenced by the adult culture. I also believe that bullying is a learned behavior, so if adults change, there may be hope for the children.

          I learned quite a bit about bullying, first with my father, who was an abusive, violent bully, then as a volunteer with the dept. of corrections for 6 years. As a co-facilitator of several programs, I had access to the files of those incarcerated. Unfortunately, many of them were bullied, abused and often sexually assaulted. Knowing that, does not in any way justify their behavior. With that information, however, I can better understand the behavior.
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        Aug 29 2013: Yes, I believe every freedom comes with responsibility, why should free speech be any different? Targeting children or exploiting the weakness or ignorance of people is an abuse of that trust, so we are within our rights to take measures against these exploits.

        I have a view; We either control everything and add freedoms where it is merited or we free everything and add controls where it is merited. People would not like the way I over simplify things but it is two potential approaches we can make in the world. The problem with the freedom approach is that people scream murder wherever you feel a control is warranted, just as with the control approach people inevitably scream murder wherever you grant a freedom :p

        Reminds me of Edmund Burke: "Society cannot exist unless a controlling power upon will and appetite be placed somewhere, and the less of it there is within, the more there must be without."
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          Aug 29 2013: I agree Ray....again!!! I love simplicity:>)

          Freedom does indeed come with responsibility, and those who rather not accept the responsibility can be "encouraged" with the laws we have in place regarding exploiting children.

          It seems like the only people who might be unhappy with these laws, are those who wish to exploit and take advantage of children. That seems pretty simple to understand as well!
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        Aug 29 2013: I figure there will be things that we have to use our good sense with, be responsible. I don't want a society that bans responsible people from an activity because some people abuse the activity, that is a case of punishing the world for a few rotten apples. I like the old way: you have freedom until you abuse it, people need to face consequences for irresponsible behaviour and not cop out under rights. Hard to do in the largely anonymous system.

        I'd say: There are mechanisms where you can verify your identity, then there are sites where you can remain completely anonymous, there are many (or most) that have both. Maybe it is just a case of separating the verified from the anonymous somehow. I'm not a computer tech but I am sure it is a possibility.

        But I agree, at some point parents will still have to take responsibility and monitor their children's online activity, that is what "parental lockouts" are for, protecting your children shouldn't be a taboo, that you are an overbearing control freak, it is about love.
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        Sep 1 2013: The NSA thing; I think most people have an over-inflated view of their own importance.
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      Aug 27 2013: I agree Ray, that we have a lot of insecure, wounded people in our world. I also recognize many challenges in the life experience, and I do not believe in labeling anything "failure". If we face the challenges, learn something, and can move on through the life adventure, we have not "failed", in my perception.

      Insecure adults and children are easy targets for bullies because insecurity is the foundation for both the bully and the victim. If a person can be secure enough in him/herself to NOT personally accept the words and behaviors of the bully, then the cycle is broken in that situation. Unfortunately, children usually do not have a choice, as adults, we do have choices.

      Yes, I agree with you that there is often a feeling that we (humans) need to be better, we're not good enough, which is an insecure perception and helps reinforce the foundation for a bully and a victim of bullying.

      I believe bullying is generally a learned behavior, and many who are bullies, have been bullied. They are often wounded people, with intent (consciously or subconsciously) to wound others in an attempt to bring others to their same level of discontent and insecurity.

      Knowing this, as I said, does not in any way justify the behavior. It does, however, provide information regarding how we might contribute to change. If one chooses to NOT take on the words and behaviors of the bully, it is important to reflect in oneself and understand some of the underlying causes. If one genuinely wants to stop bullying, it is also important to reflect and understand him/herself, and why s/he is choosing bullying behaviors.
      • Aug 28 2013: there is also a biological element, the primitive urge for dominance and the furthering of your own genes necessitates that others be placed lower. that's not an excuse however, like all urges they can be overcome with sufficient self-restraint.
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          Aug 28 2013: Good point Ben. There is the very basic "primitive urge", as you mention, and there are all kinds of studies connecting DNA with violence.

          Apparently, the "primitive urge" can be dealt with, because it is apparent that all people do not need to dominate, control or bully others to feel good about themselves, or guarantee the furthering of their own genes. Perhaps humans are evolving beyond this primitive urge?

          The studies regarding the DNA/violence are interesting, and it doesn't appear that they (researchers, authorities, etc.) have discovered a very useful way to use the information.
      • Aug 31 2013: exactly right, we're all differently predisposed to different behaviours, and hence we all need to apply varying amounts of willpower to keep our behaviour appropriate. it is harder for some people to refrain from bullying than others, but that's not an excuse for them to do it, rather they have to try harder to control themselves.

        i think knowing is a big help. eg when a person feels bad (headache etc) it's harder to control their temper, and being aware that you're feeling more on edge than usual helps prepare yourself to be more careful than usual to keep calm.
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          Aug 31 2013: True Ben...we're all different....have different behaviors....harder for some people to refrain from bullying....and that's not a very good excuse.

          Also true that part of the first step is awareness. If a bully thinks/feels s/he is getting something valuable from the bullying behaviors, there is no incentive to change. If, on some level, the behavior helps them feel superficially superior, stronger, smarter, etc., than others, they will continue to use the practice to try to bolster their own insecurity.

          It is pretty well known in the psychological field that bullies are insecure. They often feel out of control in some aspects of their life, and dominating others helps them feel more in control of something.

          Are you aware of the term "leveling"? It is a practice whereby one who is less secure tries to bring others to their level of insecurity or distress. That is basically what bullying is.

          Bullies AND victims of bullying are insecure. The bully cannot generally intimidate a more secure person, and a more secure person has no reason or desire to intimidate anyone.

          If we could ever genuinely empower more people (know thyself, as you point out in your previous comment), we might have fewer bullies and victims of bullying.
      • Sep 3 2013: hiya colleen, glad to hear from you. i learned also i guess from the same reports put out by psychologists the connection between insecurity and bullying.

        as a teacher i've seen levelling plenty of times myself though this is the first time i've actually heard the time. in my experience usually it's a diversion, rather than someone 'on top' of the bully level bringing someone else down, it's usually done by someone lower who doesn't want to be bullied, so they ensure someone else stays at the lower rung by bullying them.

        another experience i've had time and time again is discovering that the worst bullies aren't insecure at all. they like to say well i wish i did better at school and i feel embarrassed speaking in front of the class or whatever but it's complete bullshit. get to know them and they really don't care if they don't do certain work well because that work isn't important to them at all, though they regularly say it is to get parents and others of their case. no doubt psychologists and others who don't spend most days of the year for a number of years with these kids don't realise they're being fed a story which is why it gets into the reports.
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          Sep 3 2013: Hi Ben,
          I think I learned more from observation than from reports. The practice of "leveling" is probably not a conscious effort, but rather a subconscious effort to be on top, and feel some level of security, even if it is superficial.

          My experience with bullying behaviors started with my father, a very insecure person, who seemed to feel superficially better about himself when he could dominate and feel in control on some level.

          Another experience learning about bullying behaviors was co-facilitating "cognitive self change" sessions and other programs through the dept. of correction, with men who were incarcerated. They have some of the best tough guy bullying behaviors.

          Reading their files, and listening to them in the sessions however, seemed to uncover their insecurities, and I learned that the tough guy bullying behaviors were usually learned as a protective mechanism.

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