Cyber Bullying
What is Cyber Bullying?


Cyber Bullying has these 3 key features similar to traditional bullying, however there are differences as below:


  • Anonymity as in not knowing who is responsible for the bullying messages can add to the victim’s sense of insecurity
  • Disinhibition in anti-social behaviours behind the screen, thus can be more aggressive
  • Technology expertise of bully


  • Uploads of embarrassing and hurtful comments on purpose knowing that it will hurt
  • Bullying can be harsher as people feel free to say things online that they would not say in person


  • The hurt gets repeated when the offensive message gets shared or liked by others
  • Potential for a large wider audience to be aware of the incident
  • 24/7 accessibilty of technology results in victims being hurt anytime and anywhere even in the comfort of the home



Different Forms of Cyber Bullying

Generally, cyber bullying can be classified under two categories, namely ‘Direct Attack’ and ‘By Proxy’ (WiredKids, Inc., n.d.).

Direct Attack
(targeted directly at the victims)

  • Cyber Stalking
  • Flaming
  • Harassment
  • Ostracism/Exclusion
  • Outing/Trickery

By Proxy
(manipulating others to cyber bully the victims)

  • Denigration
  • Masquerading/Impersonation
  • Degradation



Direct Attack

Cyber Stalking

Repeatedly sending threatening messages that make a person afraid for his or her safety.



Intentionally excluding others form an online group



Online “fighting” by posting negative messages with angry or vulgar language on message boards such as those on gaming sites or blogs.



Repeatedly sending rude and insulting messages to someone via SMS, message board or social media account


Outing & Trickery

Sharing someone’s secrets or embarrassing information, and/or tricking someone into revealing secrets or embarrassing information about themselves.



By Proxy


Distributing information about another that is embarrassing and untrue. For example, posting videos of a person being bullied on the internet or sending defaced photos to a person’s blog.



Breaking into another person’s e-mail account, social networking site to send vicious or embarrassing messages to others by posing as the person.



Using cruel gossip or rumours to damage someone’s reputation or friendship with others.


Why People Cyber Bully

  • Increased accessibility to cyber resources
  • Anonymity of Cyber Bullies
  • Inadequate Supervision
  • Boredom and Peer Influence
  • Able to hide their identities