There is a new online trend that is taking cyber bullying to a whole new level. You know all those semi-sexy, pouty lip, shot from above Facebook profile pictures that we are all guilty of taking? Well, teen girls take even more of those and post to their profiles and now, other girls are swiping those photos and using them to ridicule one another.
They are using the photos as ways to give blunt advice and backhanded insults. Think of it is a really awful game of caption this. It plays out more like finding out that everyone in the world has featured you on the People of Wal-Mart site as they point and laugh.
Worse still is that the photos are going viral and taking teen shaming to new heights. It is social media at its worse. There are even entire social media sites dedicated to this new online bullying strategy. The kids who are being targeted know they are being targeted. It is all very cruel and full of ill meaning intention.
How can we keep our kids safe from this sort of bullying when teens are taking photos out of context and making fun of them online without permission or reason? Do we need to stop our children from being online entirely? Do all settings need to be private? Do we need to lock our kids in a bubble away from the world just so that they don’t become the target of ridicule and humiliation for doing nothing other than minding their own business and being a kid?
Do you think this sort of cyber bullying oversteps the freedom of speech boundaries?
Image via Picture Youth/Flickr