Students advised to consult parents, teachers against cyberbullying

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Students should consult parents at home and harassment monitoring officers at university in case of cyberbullying, a form of harassment using electronic gadgets including mobile phones, tablets, computers, laptops etc.

Also known as online bullying. It has become increasingly common, especially among teenagers, as the digital sphere has expanded and technology has advanced.

Muhammad Nawaz Sharif University of Agriculture (MNSUA) Harassment Monitoring Officer, Dr Ayesha Hakim, told APP on Thursday that one could be bullied through SMS, apps or online at social media which includes Facebook, Instagram, TikTok and on gaming where people can view, participate or share content.

She informed that sending, sharing, posting negative, harmful, false or mean content was also part of it, adding that one should save all posts, messages and communications from the bully by taking screenshots or photos on one’s smartphones in addition to recording time and date or any other relevant information.

“The best option for bullied students is to block the bully on social media,” Dr Ayesha said and added that students must bring it into notice of harassment monitoring officers in the universities for its remedy.

Clearing a misconception that boys are always aggressors with girls, she noted that at times they were also harassed by the girls.

“The girls are just like the boys-both victims and bullies, “she said. She advised the parents as well as teachers to notice the changing behaviours of bullied children including loss of interest in favourite activities, an unexplained decline in grades, bunking classes, symptoms of depression and switching of eating or sleeping habits. Dr Ayesha suggested awareness on online harassment should be created among commoners and children because it was a dire need of the hour.

Cyberbullying is in many cases an extension of already existing traditional bullying. Students who are bullied via the Internet.—APP

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