“The broader issue of hate on the Internet has really taken a back seat to things like spam and obscenity and child predation, all admittedly important topics, but hate on the Internet has sort of fallen off the priority list.” - Christopher Wolf
A Missouri neighbor was indicted on federal charges related to the suicide of a 13-year-old cyber-bullied MySpace user this week. In this video interview, an internet and privacy lawyer considers cyber bullying and how the law and the Web intersect.
Andy Carvin, author of the PBS blog Learning.Now, states “The trial, of course, will take some time to play out, and we’ll have to see how the jury responds to the case. Either way, the charges against Lori Drew potentially put every cyber-bully on notice: if you use online networks to inflict distress and harm on someone, don’t be surprised if the long arm of the law reaches you.”
This story clearly challenges parents, schools and internet providers to understand and seriously address the commonplace (typically low-profile) issue of cyber-bullying. A New Yorker article Friend Game: Behind the online hoax that led to a girl’s suicide. provides a detailed account of this particular cyber-bullying incident.
There is also the superb one hour PBS Frontline documentary Growing Up Online.. You can access the documentary, chapter by chapter, from icons in the right hand column of the NewsHour video interview.
Here are a few more suggestions for dealing with school bullying, and cyber-bullying in particular.
NewsHour Report: MySpace-related Suicide Highlights Cyber Bullying
PBS Frontline documentary Growing Up Online
PBS Frontline: Growing Up Online Teacher Resources
PBS Blog Learning.Now: Indictments Handed Down in the Megan Meier Case
PBS Blog Learning.Now: Stop Cyberbullying Day
The New Yorker: Friend Game: Behind the online hoax that led to a girl’s suicide.
Los Angeles FBI Press Release
Google Directory: Bullying
American Library Association: Online Safety for Young People
American Library Association: Social Networks and Cyber Bullying
American Library Association: Hot Issues for Young People (scroll down)
U.S. Health Resources & Services Administration Multimedia Resources:Take A Stand. Lend A Hand. Stop Bullying Now!
The International Network Against CyberHate