Monday, June 18, 2012

Cyberbullying: Not a Crime Per Se

In Florida, there is no criminal act of cyberbullying.  When we discuss bullying, we refer to the Anti Bullying statute 1006.147 which is found under the Education Code.  Not under the criminal code. The law applies to public schools adults and children K-12.  Bullying means on going, continuous acts against a person causing psychological and or physical hurt.  When you add the word cyber, the definition  of bullying pertains to bullying through  digital mediums. like computer, cellphones, TV, radio. Hurtful information that is usually posted by the perpetrator through blogs, chatrooms, social media [facebook] email.  The hurtful information can be pictures or words.  Legally for it to be a crime in Florida, we term this abuse as cyberstalking or cyberharassment. These terms are usually found in the description in the harassment and or stalking statute. 

Cyberbullying, for it to be a violation of student conduct codes, must happen on campus, school bus, student activities and if through a computer, usually a school computer or a computer on school campus. 

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