Advertisement

Can cyberbullying be unintentional?

Shawn Edgington
Pediatrics
The act of cyberbullying (when a minor uses technology as a weapon to intentionally threaten or hurt another minor) requires that the cyberbully intends to do harm to or torment their target. The exception is when a minor is careless and hurts another minor's feelings, which is called "inadvertent cyberbullying." In this case, the target feels victimized, even if it is not the other child's intention.

Sure, in fact in according to a study released by the University of British Columbia many teens don't differentiate cyberbullying from joking around. About 95 percent of youth surveyed said that what happened online was meant to be a joke and about 5 percent was actually meant to harm someone. Teens may think what they are posting or texting is just a joke, but if you're on the receiving end it may not be all that funny. If the "joking" is repetitive, it could cross the line into cyberbullying. That's why it's so important to educate our youth about how to use technology appropriately.

Source: http://www.publicaffairs.ubc.ca/2012/04/13/cyberbullying-and-bullying-are-not-the-same-ubc-research/


Continue Learning about Teen Perspective: Bullying

Why might some cyberbullies have an accomplice?
Shawn EdgingtonShawn Edgington
Often, cyberbullies who misuse the Internet to target others achieve their goal by using accomplices...
More Answers
How can a child use a stolen password to cyberbully another child?
Shawn EdgingtonShawn Edgington
Stolen passwords are used in cyberbullying when a child steals another child's password and converse...
More Answers
Lizzie Velasquez on Overcoming Cyber Bullies
Lizzie Velasquez on Overcoming Cyber Bullies
The Story Behind the Viral #LeggingsWin Movement
The Story Behind the Viral #LeggingsWin Movement

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.