“The past 15 fifteen years have clearly changed bullying. Yet, a generational disconnect persists between today’s adults who were bullied as kids and today’s students who are experiencing a new kind of bullying.” ~ The New Bullying / MSU
The NEW Bullying?
Yes. Control, power and intimidation have fueled bullying for centuries, but bullying has moved far beyond nasty school pranks or anonymous notes and phone calls. Bullies can now reach their targets 24 hours a day via the internet, and can extend cruelty to a victim and multiply it across the globe with a single ‘click’.
The fabulous social connections we’ve all discovered and become addicted to via MySpace ( 2003), Facebook (2004), YouTube (2005) and Twitter (2006), are also a bully’s best tools. These tools are almighty powerful: once a bully’s words, images or videos are placed on the internet, the devastating comments, slander, insinuation and untruths never truly disappear.
Individuals and groups are fighting back, and raising awareness with the same social web tools that bullies use to terrorize. One group, Defeat the Label, has organized a national “Stand 4 Change Day” on May 4th to draw attention to the escalating problem of bullying among youth. “Bullicide” was a term coined in 2001 for people who take their lives because of bullying – a tragic, permanent end to ongoing, invisible torture. Stepping up to offer wraparound healing and prevention, Beaumont Hospital plans to open a Bully clinic (NoBLE Anti-Bullying Program) in Royal Oak on May 4th; their goal is to treat the bully, the victim, their families and the bullying bystanders.
NoBLE VIDEO Michigan hospital opens anti-bullying center.
Also, hot-off-the-press and raising awareness: “The New Bullying: How Social Media, Social Exclusion, Laws and Suicide Have Changed Our Definition of Bullying – and What to Do About It” is a brand new book created by an advanced journalism class at Michigan State University. The book uses current research and real-life interviews and examples to report on cyber-bullying, school bullying, military hazing, workplace bullying, computer threats and social exclusion. Today’s bullied students are enduring inescapable harassment; “The New Bullying” will help us understand exactly what we are fighting in 2012, and how to offer solutions.
“The New Bullying” book is currently available online/downloads via Kindle, Nook and Google Play, and will also be offered in paperback.