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Expert cautions against new cyberbullying craze

By Megan Rose

'Roasting’, a new cyberbullying craze, is becoming increasingly prominent among young people, an expert has warned.

Charlotte Robertson, from Digital Awareness UK, has spoken about the ‘severe’ effects of this new type of cyberbullying – which has previously fallen under the radar of adults because it is viewed by young people as a form of ‘banter.’

Predominantly carried out through social media apps such as WhatsApp and Facebook, it involves young people turning against one another and sending malicious, aggressive comments until the victim ‘completely cracks.’  

Disturbing news events like killings can be used as material in a roasting, made into memes [photographs with a humorous caption] to further target victims.

The warnings come in response to research carried out by the non-profit organisation, which found that girls are almost twice as likely to be perpetrators and victims of cyber bullying, while boys are more likely to participate in physical acts of bullying.

Despite this, roasting is carried out by both girls and boys.

Roasting is particularly ‘dangerous’, says Robertson, because it is usually carried out among friends, and ‘done under the guise of good humour.’

If you’re worried that your child may be the victim of cyberbullying, click here for advice.

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Image: CCO Public Domain