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Most teens react to cyber bullying with indifference: survey

2012/07/12 18:14:59

Taipei, July 12 (CNA) Nearly 60 percent of teenagers polled in a recent survey said the situation of cyber bullying is serious, even though most of the respondents said they were not bothered about being victims of this type of online hostility, according to the survey results released Thursday.

According to the King Car Education Foundation, which conducted a survey in June on Internet usage among 1,468 school students aged 10-18, 58.31 percent of them said they feel that the situation of bullying in the online world is serious.

However, in a multiple choice question about their response to cyber bullying, most of the respondents -- 43.73 percent -- said they deal with it as something to which they are indifferent, while 41.62 percent said they "unfriend" the bullies -- remove them from their list of social media "friends."

Meanwhile, 39.10 percent of the respondents said they simply ignore malicious messages or threats toward them and do nothing, the foundation noted.

As only 23.23 percent said they would confront the bullies by attempting to reason with them about their behavior, the foundation pointed out that the more common indifference response given by most teenagers simply prompts the bullies to take their attacks to other victims.

Joyce Tseng, general director of the foundation, also reminded parents and teachers to pay more attention, as teenagers are vulnerable to online attacks and might not seek help if they become victims.

Since online anonymity makes it difficult to prevent cyber bullying, Tseng suggested that teenagers facing such attacks simply end their interaction with bullies they do not know in the real world.

However, she went on, if the bullying comes from face-to-face acquaintances or schoolmates with whom there is still a chance of striking up a friendship, teenagers should try talking them out of their improper behavior.

The survey, conducted among students at 11 schools around the country, had a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percentage points and a 97 percent level of confidence.

(By Chen Chih-chung and Kay Liu)