Question: How common is cyberbullying during the tween years?
Answer: Parents should know a few cyberbullying facts before their preteens begin middle school. About 1 in 5 tweens reports being victimized by cyber bullying, according to a comprehensive study of 9- to 11-year-olds. In particular, the researchers found that 11% of children had been victimized online or through their cell phones one or two times in the previous year. An additional 10% of the students had experienced cyberbullying three or more times in the year.
Additional cyberbullying facts: When asked about the form of the bullying, 18% of the victimized tweens said that the bullying happened through email while 17% said it occurred in a chat room. Bullying via instant messages was less common (13%), as were text messages (12%), comments on a website (11%), and distribution of an embarrassing photo (7%).
More Cyberbullying Facts to Know
Interestingly, the majority of the victimized tweens said they did not know the form the cyberbullying took (25%) or reported that it took a different form than any of the forms listed here (22%). These findings indicate how much researchers still have to learn about cyberbullying. The unclear results about forms of cyberbullying also underscore the secrecy and shame that often accompany being bullied.
Fight Crime: Invest in Kids, a nonprofit organization. Cyber Bully Pre-Teen. 2006. Retrieved November 3, 2010 from www.fightcrime.org/cyberbullying/cyberbullyingpreteen.pdf