Lifestyle

Cyberbullying 101: Dealing With It

Being the ambassador of the Microsoft African Council for Digital Good, it is my responsibility to inform my community about the dangers of cyberbullying and how one can prevent it.


In today’s episode, I share with you how to deal with cyberbullying but first…

What is cyberbully?

Cyberbullying is bullying that takes place over digital devices like cell phones, computers, and tablets. Cyberbullying can occur through SMS, Text, and apps, or online in social media, forums, or gaming where people can view, participate in, or share content. Some cyberbullying crosses the line into unlawful or criminal behavior.

HOW TO DEAL WITH CYBERBULLYING?


RECOGNISE IT

  • Cyberbullying comes in many different forms; make sure you know how to recognise it when it happens. Try to establish who is behind it, and why they may have targeted you. Make sure you keep the evidence, as without proof, it will be hard to make a complaint.

REPORT IT

Unless you report cyberbullying to an adult, it is very unlikely to stop. Start by talking to your parents or guardians about the types of cyberbullying you have experienced. They will be able to help you in reporting it to the following organisations:

  • The school: The school has a responsibility to protect you from bullying, even if it happens offsite, online or over the phone. Ask your parents to schedule a meeting with your guardian/ Life Skills teacher, and be prepared to talk to them about who has been involved.

PREVENT IT

  • Don’t respond: Never get involved in arguments online, as this will only escalate the situation and make it much worse.
  • Block the bullies: You can easily prevent cyberbullies from being able to contact you by blocking them and reporting their account.
  • Increase your privacy: Unfortunately, some people use the internet to cause harm to others. Don’t let this small group ruin your experience, but be sensible with the information you share.
  • Respect your online presence: It is easy to forget that the cyber world is the real world, and what you share online can have huge consequences. It is therefore so important that you always think before you post!

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