Copyright (c) 2011 Baylor Law Review
Baylor Law Review
NOTE AND COMMENT: Cyberbullying in Texas: Reform Is Necessary to Keep the Virtual Playground Safe
Baylor Law Review
63 Baylor L. Rev. 498
Cyberbullying is "willful and repeated harm inflicted through the use of computers, cell phones, and other electronic devices." 1 This harm comes in the form of "aggressive behavior that is persistent, intentional, and involves an imbalance of power or strength. 2 Bullying includes everything from being threatened or physically assaulted to being called derogatory names or being ostracized." 3 Cyberbullying only occurs when a minor is targeted. 4 According to the Texas Attorney General's Office, cyberbullying occurs when "a student is threatened, harassed, humiliated, embarrassed or otherwise singled out via an e-mail or post on the Internet (blogs or other Web sites), text message from a cell phone or other wireless device." 5 Cyberbullying incidents leading to litigation have originated from e-mails sent to the intended victim, blog entries regarding the intended victim, posts on social networking sites such as Facebook or MySpace, Internet parodies of the intended victim, fake Internet profiles of the victim, and creating or accessing an unauthorized website to harass or bully the victim. 6
As technology has become more prevalent in our society, especially among younger users, the detrimental effects of this type of harassment have begun to increase exponentially. 7 Even as early as 2007, forty-three percent of all teenagers with Internet access reported being bullied online. 8 In 2004, fifty-eight percent of fourth through eighth grade students nationwide reported having had mean or cruel things said to them online, and over forty percent of this number were ...
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