Why Students Cyberbully

If cyberbullying is so dangerous and can cause others to be depressed or even suicidal, why do students do it? We recently conducted an informal, non-scientific survey of visitors to this site. Here are some common reasons:

  • Anonymity. Teens felt like they could get away with being mean without the victim knowing exactly who they are. They stated that they would not necessarily bully the victim in person.

  • Piling on. Because others were already doing it, some teens felt like what they were doing was more acceptable.

  • Jealousy. Some teens expressed that they were jealous of their targets and wanted to take them down a notch.

  • Getting even. Some said that they were wronged by their victims and just giving them what they deserved.

  • Victim themselves. Some of the teens stated that they were victims themselves and if they were subjected to cyberbullying, others should be too.

Understanding why teens cyberbully helps us understand what we can do to stop it. For example, we can teach teens that it's not okay to do something just because others are doing it.