Younger teens stand up to cyberbullying | ACMA

Younger teens stand up to cyberbullying

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MR 16/2013 - 19 March 2013

Fourteen and 15-year-old teenagers, the Australians most vulnerable to cyberbullying, are also the most likely to stand up and speak out about it, according to new research released by the Australian Communications and Media Authority’s Cybersmart program

‘Not only do 14-15-year-olds experience cyberbullying but they also engage in potentially unsafe online practices like "friending" strangers and sending photos and personal information to people they have never met,’ said ACMA Deputy Chairman, Richard Bean. 

According to the ACMA’s research, more than one in five 14 to 15-year-olds has experienced cyberbullying, compared to sixteen per cent of 16 to 17-year-olds. Twelve per cent of 14 to 15-year-olds report that they have frequently witnessed cyberbullying. 

‘The good news is that these young people are prepared to stand up and speak out about cyberbullying. Fourteen and 15-year-olds reported that they frequently took action by telling the cyberbully to stop (14 per cent), defending the target of the bullying (20 per cent), or ignoring the cyberbullying behaviour (21 per cent),’ Richard Bean said. 

Early findings from the research conducted among 1,500 eight to 17-year-olds will be presented by the ACMA today at the 6th World Congress on Family Law and Children’s Rights in Sydney’s Darling Harbour. 

Levels of cyberbullying among Australian children remain generally steady despite increases in online participation, indicating that the cybersafety messages underpinning programs such as Cybersmart are getting through. 

Cybersmart.gov.au has excellent resources to help young people and their carers get the information they need to empower them to handle cyberbullying situations. We are very active through our Outreach program to educate these kids face to face at schools across the country. And we are developing new programs all the time,’ added Richard Bean. 

To arrange an interview with Rosalie O’Neale, Senior Education Advisor, please contact: Danielle Redmond (02) 9334 7983 or Gretchen Martins (03) 9963 6801 or email gretchen.martins@acma.gov.au. 

Last updated: 29 September 2016