- Cyber bullying

Cyberbullying Presentation for Parents

(4th November 2013 – John Wald - Barnardos)

Three main challenges with internet are:

1.       Keeping children safe online

2.       Directing them to educational and enjoyable resources

3.       Reminding them about their digital footprint

Children need to be mindful that what they do today affects their future and they need to be kept aware of this (criminal record...)

Parents need to be up to date on lingo (POS / ASL / GNOC / IPN...)

From a survey compiled, 14% of children admitted to meeting a person they had met online face to face.

Ways in which we can protect our children:

1.       Block websites

2.       Set password to lock down sites

3.       Take technology off children at night

Create a ‘healthy internet culture’ in the home:

1.       Have ‘quality family’ online time ( you can monitor what they do / sites they visit / time spent)

2.       Create their own account ( you can then control sites children go on and create a list of ‘favourites’)

3.       Set up an AUP outlining basic rules of usage

4.       On occasion, make up an excuse to check something on their phone or on the computer to gauge their reaction

5.       Check history

Cyberbulling and bullying in general tend to go hand in hand. The only difference from ‘traditional’ bullying is that there’s nowhere to hid, home is no longer regarded as a safe place or refuge. Messages are seen by a much larger audience which can be more humiliating and it’s anonymous.

Spotting Problems – Signs and Symptoms

Approach and highlight a change in behaviour to the child. Make the focus of the discussion their ‘behaviour.’ This helps to open a line of communication that they can trust you and that you care. This is a safer route to take rather than talking about ‘feelings’ as behaviour never lies. Watch for behaviour that seems to indicate ‘hiding’ or a time when they might ‘freeze’ when you come into the room and immediately shut site down. Check the amount of time they are spending browsing.

·         Are they spending less time on devices now?

·         Do they seem ill at ease?

·         Are they visibly upset during this time or immediately after?

·         Are they withdrawn or agitated? 

·         Do they seem suddenly to fear using the technology on their own?

What to do!

Initially map out the problem. It must be addressed immediately. Look for the answers to the following three questions.

1.       Do they know who?

2.       Do they know why?

3.       When did it begin?

Contact the school, where possible. In most cases it will be happening there and teachers will be aware of a change in behaviour. This also helps to open the communication lines with the school.

The particular websites or host should also be informed about these incidents, use the report facility.

Take a screen shot of the message and save it.

Keep records of all SMS, photos and videos.

Contact the Gardai.

Useful websites:

www.webwise.ie (Aimed at primary school level – cartoon / animation based about online safety)

www.watchyourspace.ie (Primarily aimed at teens)

www.internetsafety.ie (Publications – Get with it series, 4 books with PDF to download)


Stackallen NS Info,
10 Dec 2013, 15:28
Stackallen NS Info,
10 Dec 2013, 15:28