While mobile technologies and social networking websites have revolutionized the way teens communicate with one another, they also have resulted in an unfortunate and increasingly common phenomenon: cyberbullying. Social aggression and bullying among adolescents is no longer limited to the confines of a high school or other physical space. Nowadays, insults, accusations, threats, and other types of hostile language can be routinely exchanged and distributed for all to see on Internet message boards, personal pages, and in text messages. Although most people agree that cyberbullying has become a major problem in the lives of teens today, there is considerable debate, among parents, school leaders, and teens themselves, on how cyberbullying incidents should be addressed. In this Discussion, you will consider your own thoughts on this issue. Based on information in this weeks Learning Resources and your own experiences, reflect on the following:
Do you think school leaders should have the authority to punish students who cyberbully others? Or is this outside of their control, since it happens off school grounds and out of school hours?
What about the law? Do you think cyberbullying should be punishable by law? Or does this violate constitutional rights of free expression, and/or unnecessarily criminalize behavior that some consider typical of adolescents?
In this weeks video program, Dr. Sommers-Flanagan emphasizes the need for adults to be aware of how teens are using technology and for adults to work together to establish social norms that make it clear that bullying is unacceptable. How, specifically, might professionals who work with adolescents implement this advice in order to prevent cyberbullying incidents? (You may base your response on any specific profession/setting of your choice.)
With these thoughts in mind, follow the instructions below to post your response to this Discussion
By Day 3
Post a description of your thoughts on how cyberbullying incidents should be treated, by both school leaders and law enforcement, and why. In addition, explain at least two specific actions a professional who works with adolescents might take to prevent cyberbullying incidents. Be sure to use the Learning Resources to support your thinking.
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