Although many instances of cyber bullying occur on Facebook, the website can also be used to rally the public against bullying. Alice Cahn, Cartoon Network’s vice president for social responsibility, says, “We hope kids will see that their friends took the pledge and think, ‘If I can talk about this with my friend online, I can talk about this with my friends in the hallway, too.'”
Cartoon Network, along with CNN, Facebook, and Time Inc. are among media companies that have started an online anti-bullying campaign. The companies launched the “Stop Bullying, Speak Up” Facebook page to give students and parents a place to voice their support for victims of bullying.
The webpage includes tips to resist bullying, a map of everyone who has “spoken up” against bullying, and a place to register a “bullying prevention group” in schools. So far 446,490 people have “liked” the Facebook page and over 50,000 have signed the pledge to speak up.
According to the National Center for Education Statistics, about 28 percent of students ages 12 through 18 reported they were bullied at school during the 2008-09 school year.
Do you think efforts like this help kids to know they are not alone and that bullying isn’t acceptable? Do you think there’s more that prominent national companies like these can do to help?