Bullying and Cyberbullying: Home

Information about bullying, cyberbullying, and sexting. Information also about how to stay safe on-line.

Subject Guide

What is Bullying?

"A person is bullied when he or she is exposed, repeatedly and over time, to negative actions on the part of one or more other persons, and he or she has difficulty defending himself or herself." -- http://www.olweus.org/public/bullying.page


Do you think bullying is a problem in your school?

Yes: 3 votes (75%)
No: 1 votes (25%)
Total Votes: 4


"But I know because I have myself been bullied. It lowers my self-esteem. It makes me feel really crappy. It makes me walk around the rest of the day feeling worthless, like no one cares. It makes me very, very depressed." (12 year-old girl from Massachusetts)


“Kids get harassed for all kinds of reasons. They’re too fat. They’re too thin. They’re too tall. They are too smart. They’re too dumb. Gays and lesbians are picked on.”
—Nina Buxbaum, home economics teacher at Ashland High School

Google Search

Need more information?  Try searching with one of the key words given throughout this guide.


This libguide was created to provide information for research on the topics of bullying, cyberbullying, sexting, on-line safety, and bullying prevention.  It was created for a 7th grade unit where the students will create public service announcements about one of the topics provided.  All sources within this guide are found on the bibliography tab.


Bullying is disobeying the Golden Rule - treat others the way you want to be treated. The Golden Rule is the answer to all relationship problems. Don’t let others convince you to mistreat someone, to laugh when they are mistreated and don’t ignore it.

What is Cyberbullying?

What is Cyber Bullying?

Cyber bullying is bullying through email, instant messaging (IMing), chat room exchanges, Web site posts, or digital messages or images send to a cellular phone or personal digital assistant (PDA) (Kowalski et al. 2008). Cyber bullying, like traditional bullying, involves an imbalance of power, aggression, and a negative action that is often repeated.

Cyber bullying has some rather unique characteristics that are different from traditional bullying:

  • Anonymity: As bad as the "bully" on the playground may be, he or she can be readily identified and potentially avoided. On the other hand, the child who cyber bullies is often anonymous. The victim is left wondering who the cyber "bully" is, which can cause a great deal of stress.
  • Accessibility: Most children who use traditional ways of bullying terrorize their victim at school, on the bus, or walking to or from school. Although bullying can happen elsewhere in the community, there is usually a standard period of time during which these children have access to their victims. Children who cyber bully can wreak havoc any time of the day or night.
  • Punitive Fears: Victims of cyber bullying often do not report it because of: (1) fear of retribution from their tormentors, and (2) fear that their computer or phone privileges will be taken away. Often, adults' responses to cyber bullying are to remove the technology from a victim - which in their eyes can be seen as punishment.
  • Bystanders: Most traditional bullying episodes occur in the presence of other people who assume the role of bystanders or witnesses. The phenomenon of being a bystander in the cyber world is different in that they may receive and forward emails, view web pages, forward images sent to cell phones, etc. The number of bystanders in the cyber world can reach into the millions.
  • Disinhibition: The anonymity afforded by the Internet can lead children to engage in behaviors that they might not do face-to-face. Ironically, it is their very anonymity that allows some bullies to bully at all.



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