1 in 6 US high schoolers are victims of cyberbullying
About 16 percent of U.S. high school students are victims of cyberbullying, according to a new study published Monday in a news release for the American Academy of Pediatrics.
What is cyberbullying?
According to the government foundation Stop Bullying, cyberbullying is bullying that takes place using electronic technology. Electronic technology includes devices and equipment such as cell phones, computers, and tablets as well as communication tools including social media sites, text messages, chat, and websites.
Examples of cyberbullying include mean text messages or emails, rumors sent by email or posted on social networking sites, and embarrassing pictures, videos, websites, or fake profiles.
Researchers analyzed data collected from more than 15,000 public and private high school students who took part in a yearly survey on risky youth behaviors in 2011. They found that one in six of the students said they had been a target of cyberbullying within the past 12 months.
Girls were more than twice as likely to be targeted than boys -- about 22 percent versus 11 percent -- and whites were more than twice as likely to be victims as blacks, according to the study, which is being presented Sunday at the Pediatric Academic Societies' annual meeting in Washington, D.C.
"Electronic bullying of high school students threatens the self-esteem, emotional well-being and social standing of youth at a very vulnerable stage of their development," study author Dr. Andrew Adesman said in an American Academy of Pediatrics news release.
The study also found that many high school students spend hours a day playing video games or using a computer for something other than schoolwork.