Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Cyberbullying, Privacy, and Controversy, Oh My!

Was there something that you wanted to say while Mr. Porter, Mr. Maas, and Mr. Fisch visited our class today (Wednesday, January 27th) but didn't get to? I noticed lots of hands still raised when the bell rang, so I figured, why not blog about it? (Any and all periods are welcome to post!)

What are some lingering thoughts about the topics discussed? How do you feel about cyberbullying, in and outside of school? Should the school be involved? What about privacy? Remember, this blog post is forever, guys!

Here are some cases I found about cyberbullying and things related, if you'd like to check them out:

Middle School Student Punished for FaceBook Group

Cyber Bulling Affects One in Ten Students

Another Student Suspended for Criticizing a Teacher

Cyberbullying Leads to Suicide

*This is NOT homework. I asked Mrs. Smith if I could create a post for those that want to continue the discussion. Posting here is totally optional!


  1. I had the lingering comment/thought that our classroom seemed to be taking the subject of bullying a little too lightly. In many ways, it is ridiculous for the school to get involved in bullying incidents. Yet where is the defining line? Bullying is not something to dance around. School shootings and suicides of students- 98% of the time- result from people being antagonized. I don't think it's a subject that should, in any way, shape or form, be taken lightly.
    I would also like to add that if a school takes a student’s phone and uses it is not only uncalled for- it is licentious. A teacher has no right to invade a student’s privacy in that form. Yes, the student had their phone in class, and thus deserved to have it confiscated. However; school rules do not, in any way, state that it should go above and beyond that. This blatantly violates the Fourth Amendment to The Constitution of The United States, which guards against "unreasonable search and seizure".

    Thank you for posting this Melanie, I do believe it will strike up intriguing conversation!

  2. I agree with Sydney on this issue: cyberbullying is not to be taken lightly. Many had the opinion that "oh, it's no big deal if it only happens once or twice." Sure in elementary school, that theory may be valid. Kids call each other names and hit each other on a frequent basis. By the time a student reaches high school, these occurrences are not nearly as frequent. We tend to run into cyberbullies more and more often. Sure, it might be once or twice, but it should never be taken lightly. I am by no means saying that every time someone is cyberbullied the police should be contacted, but it is a real issue. It should never, ever be taken lightly.

  3. I was just going to say that while I agree that there are some kids out there who are overly sensitive, most of the time when something is brought to the administration there is serious reason for it. And not even bringing school into it, there could be a girl recovering from an eating disorder and a cyber bully tells her everyone thinks she is ugly and fat. Although that isn't true it could certainly put her back in the hospital whether the bully realizes the significance of those words or not. An eating disorder is a mental disorder and these "bullies" could do much more damage than they realize and should never be taken lightly.

  4. I want to agree with Bree. I think that when things are large enough issues to get all the way to the administrators desk, it is a major problem. A principal of a school (if it is a good one) is going to know the difference between cyperbullying and a couple mean comments. I also want to go back to what Meredith said, in elementary schools, sure kids get their feelings hurt all of the time, although in high schools most peoples way of communicating that they don't get along with someone is to just plain ignore them. Therefore is something happens online that is offensive to one of the students there was definitely more to the story then just disliking one another.

    Another thing that I wanted to mention during class was we were all talking about how we don't think that the school would have the right to search a personal computer. Although if we are keeping our personal computer in the school's locker would that give them permission, or would they need to have a suspicion in order to search it?

  5. Hmm, interesting things said here ladies!
    I'm still a bit skeptical on bringing school into the cyberbullying issue, though. The thing is, cyberbullying is pathetic, hurtful, immoral, and unavoidable. If you're an avid internet user, you're bound to either a) be a victim of it b) be a bully yourself c) watch it happen between others or even have all three things happen. It just can't be avoided. That being said, if someone seriously stoops so low that they devote all of their free time to bashing someone over the internet, then that person clearly has a few issues they need to work on. The victim is better than the bully. Eleanor Roosevelt said, "Nobody can make you feel inferior without your consent," and that is something I live by. Sometimes, no matter how hard it is, you just have to let the drama go because it just isn't worth it. Getting hurt is nothing more than giving the bullies exactly what they wanted. I know that can be harsh, but honestly... that's how I see it.

    Moving on - that's how I'd like to see it in a perfect world. Since that's pretty impossible, I don't think that the school of the victim and/or bully should be involved. What about parents? What happened to law enforcement, if it comes to that? School just seems like the last place to bring that sort of thing into. School is for learning, NOT for dragging stupid teenage tension around.

    Kylie, I don't think that a school can search a student's personal laptop. However, I know there are ways to remotely track a computer and I believe they can do that because that person is using the school's internet. Like what Jessica was saying during class, the school can search her laptop because it's the school's property... I feel that the school can see what I'm doing on their internet, they just can't go through the files and whatnot I have ON my computer. Does that make sense, sort of?