The StopCyberbullying Irish Working Group:
In conjunction with the Global StopCyberbullying Youth Summit, we are pulling together the leading voices and groups in Ireland and Norther Ireland to help identify what's working, what's not, what we have and who we can count on to help and what we still need. Help and advocacy groups too often work in silos and reinvent the wheel. The compete for the small slices of public and foundation funding to keep their doors open and their programs in the public and policymakers' minds' eye.
WiredSafety's volunteers in 76 countires around the world have been helping victims of cyberbullying, their families, schools, police, mental health experts and the bullies themselves address the problems and forge grassroots' solutions. We are, perhaps, best known for pulling together all relevant stakeholders, especially the children, tween and teens.
In the twenty years, we have learned several things, but the most important two are "nothing changes, history repeats and repeats itself" and "the power of digital technology to help is much bigger than its power to hurt." From the very early days of AOL to the explosive nature of social media some people have used the Internet and digital technology as a weapon to attack others for a myriad of reasons.
Roughly 30% of cyberbullying is accidental (or "inadvertent cyberbullying"). Sent to the wrong person, written too fast to make sense, an intended joke or auto-corrected to mean something entirely different - these 30% of cases could disappear if we teach digital literacy. Another 12% involves stolen or abused passwords, account takeovers or misappropriated devices (such as using someone's cell phone or gaming device without permission to set them up). So digital hygiene skills, together with digital literacy, would reduce cyberbullying today by 42%!
Recent reports stated that a classroom's worth of children were cyberbullied every day in Ireland. Think of how quickly those numbers would decrease. Does StopCyberbullying and WiredSafety have all the answers? Of course not. But we have some of the answers and know people or hope to meet people with some of the others. We have to approach this like a big Irish pot-luck dinner. Those who make the best biscuits should bring them. The best potato cooks should bring those. Bacon, desserts, salads, those too. At the end we have a feast that feeds everyone and represents the best from our gardens and kitchens.
We will invite the good cooks we know and hope that you will introduce us to those we haven't yet met. Tell us what's working and what isn't. We want this to be inclusive and innovative. So, le us know if you want to be part of this and work together to develop a comprehensive program that addresses all stakeholders' needs delivered by a working group that cares about kids, the digital technology benefits and cyberwellness.
Reach out through this form. We'll get back to you shortly. Lots ot do before the events! We need and welcome your help. We'll try to squeeze you in.