Social media has become a major influence on not only the recent generation, but others as well. Its use has become a normal routine in the lives millions of people. Social media has many positive things about it, but with every positive thing there are also many negatives. When social media was first developed, there was no intention of it having such a large negative impact on lives, families and communities. Over the years, people have taken advantage of social media and the opportunities it presents, using it to cause harm or stress to others. The negative implications of social media include cyber bullying, criminals using the websites to promote crimes and stealing identities, and aiding in the spread of hate groups.
Cyber bullying is no longer uncommon, especially through websites such as facebook and twitter, as well as the use of mobile phones to conduct the bullying. In Australia, there are unfortunately no laws specifying cyber bullying as a criminal act, but there are laws that the actions of cyber bullying fall under. For example, actions such as stalking or constant harassing are considered illegal. A number of studies since the introduction of social media have shown that children who are cyber bullied are more likely to show depressive symptoms in their teenage and adult years. Another study showed that young people who do the bullying have a one in four chance of having a criminal record by the age of thirty. Reports from police indicate that some of the victims of cyber bullies, teenagers specifically, take their own lives because the bullying has suddenly escalated and they believe that nothing they or their parents can do will stop it. In some cases, cyber bullying could involve the use of threats to harm someone, thus hospitalising victims. In a world where cyber bullying is not uncommon it is extremely difficult to move away from it, especially if social media is a heavy part of a victim’s life.
When online, criminals are at their...
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