Technology and Anti-Bullying – my thoughts.

As you can imagine, I’m reading all the time about the positives and negatives of the use of technology in all aspects of life. There exists many articles in the news about how technology, mainly mobile, and how it impacts on education. It was when reading an article on this that I came across a statement that said – “Allowing mobile phones [in the classroom] would almost certainly increase cyberbullying”. After reading this I put it on the pile to waffle about and here it is….

I am not an expert on this topic and I apologise in advance for any inaccuracies which I might make within this waffle.


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There are some subjects that I would never want to discuss or voice an opinion about, mainly because I can’t possibly or never have experienced the situation and therefore it is hard for me too understand the emotion and feelings associated with it. As you can probably imagine from the articles I have written about being different and knowing of my ‘geeky’ behaviour and OCD tendencies, I am a prime target for bullying, let’s face it, although not intentionally, I provide plenty of ammunition for them. As the internet has increased, how people interact and use it has also increased and diversified. I recognise that this has allowed abuse and bullying to become more virtual and I am totally against this. I consider that bullying is a behaviour that some people ‘need’ in order to make them feel better about themselves and they often are now using technology to support their actions. But as well as providing an arena and/or tools for bullies I think technology can also provide a supportive role to help to combat the bullies and their actions and provide a start to seeing a more positive future for those who are being bullied.

  • Tell someone – I remember completing some training when I was teaching in primary school about bullying and discussing one point the trainer made about encouraging the victims of bullying to tell someone. This is incredibly hard for anyone – confessing something face to face exposes anyone to possible ridicule and dismissal. Childline, allowed victims to talk and tell someone without that face to face meeting. The number of calls that the phone line recieved is testimony alone to its effectiveness. This was technology supporting the victims of bullying. Allowing people to talk about it, often for the first time, anonymously and away from a face-to-face meeting is important. With the development of emails, instant messaging and even twitter – initial contact can be made with the important people and this is often the start of the process to stop the bullying.

  • Support – Being bullied is very isolating. There has always been support for people out there, but the increase used of technology has made this not only more apparent but also more accessible. Events and websites such as Anti Bullying Week raise the profile of anti bullying and provide support for everyone who have been forced to be trapped within their own world. Facebook pages and support groups are available and help to support the message that it is not right what you are experiencing and it is not your fault and that you need to tell someone about it. Also, the amount of discussions and case studies allows people to realise that others are or have experienced the same and that you are not alone and there is support.

  • Hope – Time is a funny thing. We are almost trapped in a moment and although we can’t accurately predict the future, we often try to. Whenever considering the future we often duplicate the current emotion we are feeling. This can lead, in certain circumstances, to a very negative feeling about the future. It is important for everyone to have and accept ‘hope’. That glimmer that the future can be different and that things can change for the better. YouTube is a place where people tell their stories and discuss quite openly about their experiences. They are able to look back and reflect and then show what they have achieved and how they coped with situations. When being bullied, these can provide an inner strength, seeing someone who has managed to come through the situation and survived. Although this does not stop or prevent the bullying, it helps to prevent the deterioration of victims self esteem and self worth. This sharing alone I feel is a great positive of the use of technology in the anti bullying campaign.

  • I hope that no-one has taken offence by this waffle or has felt that I have trivialised the whole topic of bullying. To me, bullying is something which is very real and something which we will continue to crusade against towards its eventual eradication. Unfortunately, this might be an impossible battle since we are attempting to change an aspect of human behaviour. I think, however, that we have technology which can be one of our main tools to support the battle against bullying and, instead of thinking of the negatives, by embracing the positives it will help us to forge ahead towards reducing both the occurrences of bullying and the impact it has on the victims.