Thursday, February 11, 2010

Site discusses cyber-stalking, -bullying, -pressuring, -abuse

Have you been to That's Not Cool yet? If not, get your butt over there and check out this great site, which says "Your cell phone, IM, and social networks are all a digital extension of who you are. When someone you're with pressures you or disrespects you in those places, that's not cool." (h/t to WomensLaw.org

This is a really important issue -- we're hearing all the time about cyber-bullying and other forms of digital harassment that teens are dealing with these days, and this definitely has an impact on young girls. It's hard to know if someone is crossing a line when it involves text messages -- how many are too many? Or is it more about the tone than the quantity? And as we've seen, pressure to send nude or semi-nude photos and/or actually sending them to someone you're seeing can have a devastating outcome. Boys and girls need to be educated about these issues, and this site is a good place to get information.

The site is put on by the Office on Violence Against Women, Ad Council and Family Violence Prevention Fund. It's targeted at teens and talks about issues like "When does caring become controlling? When does affection become obsession? When does talking become stalking?" The site also talks about various kinds of abuse and has resources for more information. Not only that, it has videos to help explain situations and a forum where people can ask questions and discuss their problems.

Perhaps my favorite thing on the site is the "Callout Cards." There are a bunch posted, for topics like "Textual Harassment," "Rumor Rumor," "Pic Pressure" and more. You can comment on the actual cards, or you can download them, e-mail them or have them posted to Facebook or Myspace. Some of my favorites:
 

 


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