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PNS Daily Newscast - October 29, 2020 

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Cyber-Bullying a Growing Epidemic for NH Kids

December 9, 2009

MANCHESTER, N. H. - Email, texting, Facebook - the world of cellular phones, instant messages and online social networking sites has transformed the way many people communicate. And, while technology has made it easier for them to stay connected, it also has created a whole new set of problems for kids, in New Hampshire and elsewhere.

Bullying is no longer limited to the playground and school hallways, says Maxine Mosley, a middle-school counselor in Manchester. She says children receive threatening email and text messages on their cell phones and computers, day and night. Cyber-bullying is an issue that Mosley and other educators deal with on a daily basis, and she warns it is more pervasive than many adults realize.

"Kids creating a site on, 'Who do you hate the most?' People taking pictures of people and 'Photoshopping' them; sexting and texting. Somebody's texting somebody in another class, threatening them: 'I'm going to get you after school.' And it is, at this point, probably a national epidemic."

Mosley, who works at Henry J. McLaughlin Middle School and leads workshops on cyber-bullying, says children who are victims of such behavior can become withdrawn, angry and depressed. They are often reluctant to admit to adults that they are being bullied, however, for fear of losing their phone or computer privileges. That's just one reason she says it is important to monitor kids' online activity and cell phone habits.

"They need to be watching what their children are doing and looking for patterns in their behavior that are changing. Most parents don't realize they can go into the history of a phone or on the computer, and check and see what their child is doing."

While many school districts in New Hampshire are creating stricter rules for student cell phone and computer use, Mosley thinks parents and communities must come together to effectively address the issue of cyber-bullying. One resource she recommendeds, both for teens and adults, is

Monique Coppola, Public News Service - NH