Is Your Teen A Victim Of A Cyberbully? Would You Know?

National Children’s Mental Health Awareness day right around the corner on May 7th, 2015.  Bullying and cyberbullying can cause long term emotional scars.  Many times teens will hide these bruises from their parents – pretending to be brave – as if it isn’t cool to be sad or depressed.

Bullying has changed from the days of taking someone’s lunch money or giving them a swirly in the bathroom. Now, children are much more likely to engage in cyberbullying, or the use of electronic communication to bully a person. In fact, 20-30% of today’s children will be cyberbullied, and 10-20% of students will be cyberbullies.

However, it can be tricky for a parent to figure out if their child is experiencing cyberbullying; more than half of the children who experience cyberbullying do not tell their parents about it. And while around 55% of teens report having observed bullying behavior online, 95% report ignoring the behavior when it was observed.

There are a few tell-tale signs that can give clues that your child might be engaged in cyberbullying. For example long periods and odd hours of internet use, or changes in a child’s patterns of internet use, can signify cyberbullying. A child engaging in cyberbullying behavior might also become upset if their internet usage is confronted or cut off by their parents. Children with excessive social media accounts may be using them to follow and harass others.

Is Your Child A Cyberbully: Facts About Cyberbullying

Attribution – YellowBrick Program

Internet Safety: Community Empowerment Series Session III

april poster

Saturday, April 27th.

Nease High School is the location.

Starting at 9:00am the Community Empowerment Series will have their final event with one of the hottest topics that reaches everyone with a keypad or a cell phone.

Especially those teenagers that are are heading to prom that evening. Before you snap those picture and post those questionable comments, you will benefit from this event featuring Theresa Payton. She is one of our countries leading cyber safety experts and will be discussing cyber bullying, identity theft, and cell phone safety including sexting.

Did you know?

· Over 95% of teens use social networking

· Last year over 500,000 kids had their online identity stolen

*85% of teens have been cyber bullied at least once

· Sexting: 71% of teen girls and 67% of teen boys have participated in posting/sending sexually suggestive content.

Dr. Joseph Joyner is recommending that every teacher, parent and student attends this event and takes advantage of this learning experience.

St. Johns County Sheriff Shoar will be introducing Theresa Payton and will have his team available with literature for our community regarding Internet safety and our kids.

This is a FREE event and open to the public. It is presented by the St. Johns County Education Foundation and Communities in Schools of St. Johns County and sponsored by The St. Augustine Record, First Coast News and other generous donors.

Online registration is recommended.

Learn more at www.communityempowermentseries.com.

Tips for Stopping Teen Harassment: HEY BACK OFF! (New Book)

Order today!

After going through my own experiences as an adult being harassed by people online, whether it is cyberstalking, cyberbullying or downright meanness; it can be hard for teens to emotional handle these harsh attacks.  I know it was for me, and I was not only an adult, I was a mother, had a flourishing career and an organization that was helping thousands of families.  All at the same time being virtually attacked by keystrokes.  I was fortunate I was able to fight back and find vindication.  This book can help give teens the power and tips they need to rise above the harassment they may be facing.

HEY, BACK OFF!

By Jennie Withers and Phyllis Hendrickson

Because of the recent alarming increase of tragic suicides among youths, the direct result of repeated harassment and taunting of school children, the United States Department of Education (DOE) released a nationwide appeal to Boards of Education addressing the growing harmful issue in our schools: bullying. Many states have now signed the “Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights” to help ensure the physical and emotional well-being of today’s youth. Approximately 160,000 students in America and more worldwide avoid school each day because of the fear of bullying and 60 to 80 percent of schoolchildren face harassment intimidation.

For More Info: WebsiteFacebookTwitter and 4 Teachers

Listen to CyberhoodWatch recent BlogTalk Radio Show with Jennie Wirthers!

Order today on Amazon!

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Third Annual BLUE SHIRT DAY – World Day of Bullying Prevention

Love Our Children USA announced today the Third Annual BLUE SHIRT DAY™ – WORLD DAY OF BULLYING PREVENTION to kickoff  National Bullying Prevention Awareness month during October. The Blue Shirt Day™– World Day of Bullying Prevention is an initiative of STOMP Out Bullying™ to combat bullying and cyberbullying.

This time of year should be an exciting time for students returning to school …learning, seeing old friends and making new ones; but the reality for many is often very different. They’re the victims of bullying at school, on playgrounds and online. They’re afraid to go to school for fear of being bullied.

To signify the importance of National Bullying Prevention Awareness month, STOMP Out Bullying™, a signature program of Love Our Children USA™, created Blue Shirt Day™- World Day of Bullying Prevention which is observed on the first Monday of October. On this day, we ask kids and adults alike to make Monday, October 3rd, the day that bullying prevention is heard around the world by wearing a Blue Shirt in solidarity to STOMP Out Bullying.

With the new school year beginning, this is a call to action for students, schools and workplaces across the country. Hundreds of schools across the country have agreed to participate and many more are expected to join.

This year’s campaign not only offers a newly designed “limited edition” blue shirt, it will create an even greater awareness with a PSA. The PSA will air on major TV and cable networks, as well as online.

Ross Ellis, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of STOMP Out Bullying™ said: “Kids who are intimidated, threatened, or harmed by bullies and cyberbullies often experience low self-esteem and depression. Some take their lives as an alternative. Many do not understand how extreme bullying can get. Parents, teachers and school administrators must use sensitivity in handling these issues. They must also work to make the victims more resilient, as well as working to help change the behavior of the bully. Schools can no longer sweep the issue under the rug.”

STOMP Out Bullying™ offers students a safe haven. From information and resources, to an online area where youths can talk about the issue, to getting involved in social media efforts, signing a petition, raising awareness, Blue Shirt Day and celebrity PSAs and a HelpChat Line for kids and teens who are bullied, cyberbullied and at-risk for suicide, and a soon to be launched area where students can upload videos about their experiences with bullying and why they want to end bullying.

We ask kids, teens and adults to participate BLUE SHIRT DAY™- WORLD DAY OF BULLYING PREVENTION by wearing the STOMP Out Bullying™ “limited edition” blue shirt or wear their own blue shirt.

And from September 29th – October 19th the biggest celebrities will participate in the Fourth Annual STOMP Out Bullying Auction on charitybuzz.com. Some of last year’s celebrities include: Paul McCartney, Elton John, Bill Joel, Bette Midler, Ellen Degeneres, Celine Dion, Bryan Adams, Dancing With the Stars and Tom Bergeron, American Idol and a host of other very notable stars.

Ellis said: “We are so grateful to all of our partners joining us in this fight to STOMP Out Bullying. Bullying can be so painful and clearly has played a role in recent suicides across the country. And cyberbullying is in full force with the use of social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and other sites popular with kids and teens. This social online cruelty is used by individuals or groups intending to harm our youth. Bullying starts as early as kindergarten. We have to look at prevention as a community issue. It’s up to parents, schools, law enforcement and the students to work together to educate and prevent – putting an end to the violence and to the suicides.

The parents of Scott Walz, Sladjana Vidovic, Phoebe Prince, Carl Joseph Walker-Hoover, Jesse Logan, Hope Witsell (Florida), Ryan Halligan and all of the others who took their lives know only too well, because they their kids could no longer take the daily torment.

They might be here today if their schools had listened and taken a stand against all forms of bullying.Students should be educated about the harmful effects of bullying and cyberbullying. They can begin by observing and participating in National Bullying Prevention Awareness month and BLUE SHIRT DAY™- WORLD DAY OF BULLYING PREVENTION.

Recent Statistics Show:

  • 1 out of 4 kids is Bullied.
  • Approximately 160000 kids stay home from school each day due to the fear of being bullied
  • 43% of teens, 97% of middle schoolers and 47% of older teens 18-24 are cyberbullied
  • 9 out of 10 LGBT students experienced harassment at school

To learn more about hoe you can help your child handle bullying or if your child is a bully, visit www.stompoutbullying.org.

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Digital Journal Interviews Sue Scheff on Google Bomb Book

Google is the world’s top search engine used by millions each day. Anyone can be defamed easily, all searchable through Google. Author Sue Scheff talks about the Google Bomb and its impact on our life.
The Internet as a technology for information and quick, inexpensive communication may be fascinating for millions around the globe, but if put to malicious use against someone, it can be a paralyzing weapon.
That is what happened in the case of Sue Scheff, author of Google Bomb (HCI Books, 2009). In her book, co-authored with lawyer John W. Dozier, Sue tells the story of her victimization through serial defamatory attacks on the web that destroyed her professional career and trampled her personal reputation as well as her social life. Just by Googling her name, or that of her organization, countless people could mark her and her organization as evil entities, all because of false, malicious, and unchecked accusations (and even effusive abuse) made against her by someone who failed to use her for her own vested interests.

In today’s world, Google has become the measure of one’s reputation – hence the term “Google Bomb”. Standing up against the coercion, however, Sue finally won the historical $11.3 million defamation suit against the culprit responsible for her loss. It was very informative talking to Sue for an interview to run in the journal Recovering the Self (Vol. 3, No 1). Following is a slightly abridged version of Sue’s interview.

Read the entire interview here.

Sue Scheff: Texting – New App to Cover Your Tracks, but does it Encourage Cyberbullying?

TigerText, and according to the founder Jeffrey Evans, not named for the infamous text messages with Tiger Woods, is the latest gadget (application) to help people cover their tracks when they hit send a bit too fast.

We have heard this time and time again, think before you hit send.  Know that when that email or text goes out into the world of digital warfare, it is gone.  From there it can be forwarded, copied, pasted, manipulated and worse.  It could end in the wrong email box!  Did you mean to send Michael your friend or Michael your boss that not-so-funny joke?

Everyone has had that feeling after they hit send when they are typing so fast, that the automatic window of programmed names comes up and you have more then one person with the same name, with a flick of your finger, it is gone – just as you see the last name is wrong!

TigerText can’t help you there, but if you send a text that you want eliminated after the person has read it, they can help you.  With TigerText you can literally program it to delete your message from 60 seconds to 30 days after it has been read.

The catch: You have to have an iPhone (however it will soon be available on Blackberry and Android) and both parties have to download the app.  Is it worth it?  To some people it is exactly what they have been waiting for.

With school opening soon in Broward, Dade and Palm Beach Counties, it is time to think of the consequences of apps like TigerText.  Will it encourage cyberbullying?  Will the bully now believe their evidence will be destroyed?  Will it become more difficult to trace the nasty text messages?

Ross Ellis, Founder and CEO of Love Our Children USA, believes that this is exactly what can happen.  Her concerns that this type of product/app can increase and create more problems with bullying and cyberbullying.

Be an educated parent, you will have safer teens.

Watch video to understand how TigerText works.  Read more.

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Sue Scheff: STOMP Out Bullying Launches New Website in time for School Openings

Shortly school will be opening throughout our country, bullying is an expanding and explosive form of malicious attacks on kids and teens.  Whether you are being attacked verbally or online, bullying hurts! Bullying can leave long lasting emotional scars that people may not be able to see on the outside, but on the inside a child is hurting.

STOMP Out Bullying™ is an initiative of Love Our Children USA™ the National nonprofit leader that honors, respects and protects children. Its mission is to break the cycle of violence against children. Since 1999, it has paved the way in prevention and has become the ‘Go-To‘ prevention organization for all forms of violence and neglect against children in the U.S.

STOMP Out Bullying has proudly launched their new website as a new school year is about to begin.  This website offers a vast amount of educational and valuable information on bullying prevention, hotlines, and many fantastic celebrity videos and PSA’s.

For parents, educators, administers, daycare providers, STOMP Out Bullying new website also offers an adult page.  On this page you will find tip sheets to help you understand and prevent bullying and cyberbullying, as well as cell phones and mobile safety.

With school only a few weeks away, take the time to be prepared and educated on a very serious concern today, bullying.

Bullying hurts. Watch video are read more.