School cyberbullying, another evil that worsens into a pandemic

The increase in cyber bullying has become another of the collateral effects of the pandemic of Covid-19 In colombia.

According to Judy Benavides, advocacy manager for Red Papaz (network of fathers and mothers), is called cyberbullying any situation of harassment, persecution, coercion or extortion that can be carried out in a digital environment.

The specialist indicates that they are high school students, especially, those who suffer the most from bullying and especially the ciberbullying.

According to the NGO Understood, it is “kids with learning and attention issues who are more likely than their peers to be bullied online.”

Every first Thursday in November the Unesco commemorates the International Day Against Violence and Bullying at School, including cyberbullying. According to this body, 32% of students between 11 and 15 years of age are victims of bullying by their peers.

“With the Covid-19 pandemic and the closure of schools that this entails, we have seen an increase in violence and hatred online. Now that schools are beginning to reopen, children are expressing their fear of going back to school, ”said Audrey Azoulay, Director General of Unesco.

Cyberbullying, according to Stop Bullying, can occur through text messages and online applications. Given this, Judy Benavides, from Red PaPaz, warns that signs of bullying have also begun to show in online games, “This being a phenomenon that has been taking place over the years.”

Applications like Fortnite, Free Fire and other gaming platforms multiplayer have become venues for attackers to attack those they consider “weaker.”

Some forms of cyberbullying are: sending unpleasant emails or messages; posting false information about a colleague on social media; constantly make fun of someone in a group chat, apply for classes via zoom or meet; in the case of online games, constantly and purposefully eliminating or attacking a character.

It should be noted that it cannot always be considered cyberbullying. Sometimes, as the school psychologist Claudia Acuña explains, children and adolescents tend to argue in networks, they also make fun of each other or use private jokes in their text messages. “The problem is when said behavior is repetitive”, Says the psychologist.

In most cases, according to Acuña, the aggressors believe that their attacks are unimportant due to the fact that they are incapable of “showing empathy towards the other.

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