How much do Irish parents know about cyber bullying and cyber safety. NoBullying.com created a survey to find out on bullying and the danger of Cyber Bullying.
Here at NoBullying.com, we believe in the power of information and the power of the community. So we did a survey with Irish Parents on their views and beliefs on bullying. We were lucky enough to get information and answers from 217 local parents in Ireland and this is how they view bullying and danger of Cyber Bullying.
When asked about the websites that Irish children are accessing, an astounding 74% of parents said they didn’t really know the website their children use online.
When informed that children can download applications that contain content only suitable for ages over 18 on their phones, 62% of those 217 parents said they did NOT know and were not aware that their children could download such potentially abusive and harmful material.
When we asked the following question: Where do you believe bullying starts?
We gave parents a list of choices.
1. Outside school
2. In school
200 parents out of those 217 believed bullying starts at school and the other 17 believed it starts online.
These numbers highlight several aspects of the bullying epidemic and danger of Cyber Bullying in Ireland and all over the world.
1- Most Parents, even if online themselves for work or leisure, don’t really stop and ponder the effects of the cyber world on their children and the need for cyber safety for children under 18 regardless of their gender or grade at school or personal characteristics.
2- The fact that 92% of the respondents say that bullying starts at school, means that the “adults” still have an outdated version of how the world is functioning for their children, i.e because when they were children, they basically only knew one form of bullying, which is school bullying. But the truth remains that children now have to face Cyber Bullying, Cyber Stalking, Online Harassment, Gender and Sexual Orientation based bullying and not to mention workplace bullying when they grow up.
3- While parents inadvertently admit and realize that their children are always “online”, they don’t stop to monitor their children’s activities, so they don’t know if the children are accessing inappropriate sites such as pornographic websites or the fact that they could be talking to strangers on IMs or anonymous chat website such as Omegle. They also have no clue that even a seemingly innocent website such as Facebook, Twitter or Ask.fm has the potential of being the hub of massive damaging Cyber Bullying waves that could result in severe depression, anxiety and in some cases,self harm or even suicide.
4- Even if parents are actively monitoring their children’s internet activity at home or pro actively having conversations with them about the online world, again when they are at home, they do still allow children to carry smart phone with internet packages and of course, it is quite difficult to get the ability to look at a teen’s phone because that could open the discussion about freedom and privacy. But most parents aren’t aware that while a child’s privacy needs to be respected, the truth remains that most children can easily be downloading and viewing applications and websites while outside the house away from their parent’s eyes. The most obvious solution here is get an open conversation going between you and your child about the potentially harmful outcome of this and get them to set rules with you as a parent about what they can and cannot do online whether from their phone, laptop, tablet or family PC.