If you’re frequently online like many people today, then you know
that you can post images, information and data online from your home or
work computer. Did you know that using the Internet to harass someone
is now an
Internet crime? In the past, cyberbullying was not a crime recognized by the state of
Maryland or the United States government, but that has changed.
Cyberbullying is when a person uses the Internet or mobile technology like
cellphones or tablets to intimidate, harass or cause harm to another person.
For example, a teen posting an image of another undressing or being picked
on could be considered, among other things, cyberbullying.
Cyberbullying has become a problem in the U.S. as the growth of technology
has taken place. Social media platforms allow bullying to be seen by everyone
who has access, from strangers to friends of the victim, which can cause
the embarrassment and even the consequences of bullying more severe than
in the past. For example, if a child did something embarrassing at school
prior to technology, the situation may just have been forgotten about
after some time. Now, it’s possible for others to take videos and
pictures, post them online and further the child’s humiliation and
It’s only been recently that
cyberbullying has been seen as a serious issue and crime. Prior to now, there have been
few situations where a law could be applied. Now, some states do have
laws against bullying online, and other states allow problems from bullying
to be handled through civil lawsuits instead of criminal lawsuits.
Criminal harassment statues may provide enough of a basis to press charges
against a cyber bully. In over half of the states in the U.S., cyberbullying
falls under bullying laws, allowing it to be charged as such.