28 November 2007

Cyberbullying

How can a person not believe in the depravity of man after reading stories such as the suicide of 13-year-old Megan Meier, bullied online by her friend's mother after falling out with the friend?

Josh contacted Megan through her page on MySpace.com, the social networking Web site, said Megan's mother, Tina Meier. They flirted for weeks, but only online — Josh said his family had no phone. On Oct. 15, 2006, Josh suddenly turned mean. He called Megan names, and later they traded insults for an hour.

The next day, in his final message, said Megan's father, Ron Meier, Josh wrote, "The world would be a better place without you."

Sobbing, Megan ran into her bedroom closet. Her mother found her there, hanging from a belt. She was 13.

Six weeks after Megan's death, her parents learned that Josh Evans never existed. He was an online character created by Lori Drew, then 47, who lived four houses down the street in this rapidly growing community 35 miles northwest of St. Louis.
A tale of our times with a host of lessons, if we could but hear them?

1 comments:

Freelander said...

By all means let your children have access to a computer for homework completion (word processing etc) or for educational programs, but access to the Internet? That is proving very dangerous and I am pleased that my grandchildren (albeit younger than 13 at the moment) do not have internet access.

Parents - please put passwords on (see previous blog) so that children cannot surf around and get into difficulties.