The Tough Issue Of Cyber Bullying: Words That Cut Deeper Than Sword

Cyber bullying, itself, is a real issue most youth faces every day, but only few who are brave enough speak about it. According to Edward Bulwer-Lytton, "the pen is mightier than the sword. " Today, the stroke of a pen is extremely similar to the tap of a button, as the use of social media sites, positively and negatively, impacted us in many ways.

Every one of us is fond of using social networking sites to connect with anyone around the world. Cyber bullies are exploiting social networking sites to bully others not physically but emotionally. Cyber bullying is a serious issue and should not be taken lightly. Social media is made for good reasons and intentions and not to destroy a person. Social media has given bullies a more discreet way to cause harm to others. The anonymity the internet brings makes the oppressor unafraid to type hurtful words that may ruin the life of the victim. Offensive memes, body shaming, vulgar language, scandals, cyber stalking, online threats, nudity, trolling and online gossips are only some of the examples of degrading dignity and reputation by the means of social media. We must know that disrespecting and invading privacy should never be tolerated.

As the technology advances, cyber bullying has become one of the most prominent and tough issues to deal online. One of the most common example of cyber bullying I’ve noticed is the act of using Q&A social network to send questions that are complete vulgar and offensive. There are instances when someone harass, insults and sends lewd and offensive questions anonymously. Since these are anonymous questions, one cannot tell who had sent it. Under the proposed “Anti Cyber-Bullying Act of 2015”, the bill seeks to protect victims of cyber bullying. Any person found guilty of cyber bullying shall face a penalty of P50, 000 to P100, 000 or imprisonment between six months and six years. However, the provision only applies to the original author of the post of cyber libel and not to others who simply shared the post and react to it.

One of the saddest things regarding cyber bullying is that numerous individuals don’t really mean to hurt someone so deeply, and don’t realize the effects it has on someone. Words truly do hurt. Even though it is only a simple insult or rude comment, it can deeply affect people. Worse, the person you stab through your words might attempt suicide because of the nasty comments and bullying behind the screen. We must avoid cyber bullying, we need to prevent it. Personal pieces of information and inappropriate pictures that can cause embarrassment and humiliation shouldn't go online. Silence and reluctance empower bullies to continue their wrongdoings. Being equally mean to cyber bullies doesn't help either way. Informing the authorities and loved ones is something a victim should do, even if it appears frightening. Taking a screenshot of the hateful messages and saving it can help for future use. Abstaining from going online is also necessary depending on the victim's situation.

Indeed, words can cut deeper than any sword. One must realize the influence of his or her words or actions can have on others. He or she must understand bullying is never acceptable - on or offline. After all, the power of the choices and actions we make should be mightier than any sword could be.

18 March 2020
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