#makeITsafePH: HOW TO CYBERBULLY-PROOF YOUR TEENS



In this digital day and age, people have become more dependent and attached to internet and social media when it is actually easier to access the digital world in just one click. Unlike in the early years when people’s lives were more simple and a little more private, The fast progression of technology through the years made things easy for todays genearation to live a life with internet, Surely there are plenty of advantages and disadvantages too. One of which is Cyberbullying. The Philippines, specifically has now 67 million, internet users active social media accounts thus making us more prone to digital bullying, especially the youth. Globe Telecom’s #makeITsafePh campaign under the CyberPinoy cyber wellness program aims to educate the proper and harm of internet use, signs in getting cyber bullied and how to avoid being a victim.

WHAT IS CYBERBULLYING?
Cyberbullying is when someone uses technology  to bully or hurt someone thru the internet or social media. Sending hate messages or photos and circulating it quickly over the internet resulting to cyberbullying, now  a major internet problem in this digital age.

WHY DO PEOPLE CYBERBULLY EACH OTHER?
Hate. Most people or teenagers are motivated to bully each other because of anger or sometimes because of frustration. And the easiest tool to express hate words and revenge  is thru the social media. Some reasons diiffer, there are people who cyber bully just for laughs. Some do it by accident, sending hate messages to the wrong person and did not think of the consequences before doing it.

SIGNS A CHILD COULD BE A CYBER BULLYING VICTIM
Being a mother of four boys, who are tech users as eary as their toddler years, I know they are the most prone to cyberbullying. Having to see them grow up through the years si quite challenging for parents to look after how they are managing their digital life in school and in home. Yes I allow them to use gadgets in this age, But as parents, it is important though to know and keep our eyes and mind open to knowing  the signs if your child is cyber bullied.

·         Having difficulty sleeping at night. Uneasy and disturbed during bedtime.

·         Gets uneasy  when receiving a text or notifications.

·         Being quiet most of the time when surrounded with people and withdrawing from social life with family and friends.

·         Sudden refusal from computer use

·         Impatient and angry all the time

·         Not being open and avoiding sharing online activities

·         Doesn’t want to go to school

·         Suicidal thoughts and attempts

If you notice some of these signs, it is very important to sit down and talk with your child. Because he or she could fall a victim to a cyber bully.

HOW TO STOP CYBERBULLYING AND AVOID BEING ONE?

No one deserves to be bullied either face to face or over the intenet. It only aggravates hate, then leads to revenge. Getting back at a cyberbully will only turn you into one.

For teenagers, these tips  might help:

When a person or friend starts to cyber bully:

·         Talk to that person calmly and ask them not to do it.
·         Screenshot the evidence. Social media bullying is the most common tool, when you fall into a victim, immediately save the post.
·         Report and reach out for some help from elders.
·         Block social media accounts, the most common tool in cyber bullying are thru social media. Most apps have the option to block these users so posts wont appear on your feed.  Protect and strengthen your passwords.
·         Don’t be an accomplice, stop sharing hate posts. THINK BEFORE YOU CLICK.

For Parents:

·         We have to trust our children. Make a time frame or schedule of screen time during the day. Excessive use could also lead to illnesses and a number of health issues.

·         Discuss online threats and learn together how to manage security settings.

·        If your child is being bullied, dont scold. Be calm and be a supportive, have a quiet talk and discuss on what to do to stop them from doing so.

·         Don’t neglect signs of cyberbullying.

·        Engage your child to more outdoor activities and personality development workshops.
CYBERBULLY PROOFING our children is now one the major challenges in Parenting. In today's generation, it is a tough task for parents to be updated with kids' online activities but it is a responsibility that we keep ourselves in the loop with our children. Cyberbullying is one of the silent killer in this digitial society. This most of the time leads to depression and some cases does lead to suicidal attempts to those who cannot handle it calmly. if you know someone being bullied online, do not hesitate to offer help if you think you are capable of helping one. 
#makeITsafePH campaign
Background
Hootsuite, a US-based social media management platform, has released its “Digital in 2018” report of social media and digital trends around the world.  The report revealed that the Philippines now has 67 million Internet users, with all of them active on social media.  This widespread use of the internet gives rise to the emergence of internet-related crimes such as rape, theft,  bullying and piracy which made the public, especially the youth, very vulnerable.
Because of this, Globe Telecom, being a purveyor of digital lifestyle, came out with the #makeITsafePH cybersecurity and cyberwellness campaign to educate consumers about online threats and what they can do to avoid becoming a victim.  The campaign also teaches the public proper online etiquette so that they would not become a source of such deplorable behavior.









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