Minister Ahern launches GET with IT! A guide to cyberbullying

The Minister for Justice, Equality & Law Reform, Mr. Dermot Ahern T.D. today launched the fourth booklet in the GET with IT! series, A guide to cyberbullying. This booklet offers measured and practical advice on cyberbullying and is intended to increase awareness of all aspects of cyberbullying – how to identify it, how to prevent it, and how to respond before things escalate.

Speaking at the launch, Minister Ahern said: "I wish to acknowledge the role of the National Centre for Technology in Education and the childrens’ charity Barnardos in producing the content of this booklet and the Expert Review Group convened by the Office for Internet Safety to review the content. I also want to express my appreciation to O2 for their sponsorship of the printing costs of the publication.

Technology opens up a world of opportunities for young people, but it also presents hazards.  Cyberbullying is a particularly nasty consequence of technological development.  It is an insidious form of bullying. Cyberbullying can happen any time and any place and for many children and young people, home is no longer a safe haven from bullying.  Bullying via the new technologies can potentially continue invisible to all but the victim and the perpetrator."

The Minister has recently approved the membership of the Internet Safety Advisory Council whose role will be to advise the Office for Internet Safety.  The Advisory Council is drawn from representatives of the key stake holders in the statutory, industry and community sectors, and will support the work of the OIS by providing expert advice and analysis and by identifying emerging areas of concern.

The booklet is available directly from the OIS through its freefone number 1800 24 25 95 and on its new website www.internetsafety.ie.  It will also be circulated widely in the education system through the National Centre for Technology in Education and throughout O2 stores nationwide.  

In conclusion, the Minister said: "The growth in the use of the Internet, including the use of social-networking sites by young people is a key concern for parents today. Understandably, parents want to protect their children and reduce the risk they are exposed to, from whatever source.  That is why this booklet will be of assistance and is designed to educate and assist parents and others interested in children’s welfare in understanding cyberbullying and reducing the risk of cyberbullying."

9 December 2008

Note for Editors 

Cyberbullying Booklet 
Cyberbullying refers to bullying which is carried out using the internet, mobile phone or other technological devices. The "GET WITH IT! A guide to cyberbullying" booklet was produced as a joint initiative between the Office for Internet Safety, the National Centre for Technology in Education, O2 and Barnardos. The booklet is intended to increase awareness of all aspects of cyberbullying to help parents and their children understand the often confusing issues of new media technologies and tools which children and young people are using for this behaviour.

OIS Website 
The new website of the Office for Internet Safety, www.internetsafety.ie, has now gone live. The website contains information about the work of the Office and includes advice on various aspects of internet safety.

 

Internet Safety Advisory Council Membership
Fergal Marrinan (Chairperson) N/A

John Laffan, Executive Director, OIS (Deputy Chairperson)

Office for Internet Safety
Anne Conroy Barnardos
Cormac Callanan Aconite Internet Solutions
David Harvey City Channel
Derek Richards Centre for Technology for Well-Being
Frank Goodman Advertising Standards Authority for Ireland (ASAI)
Gary Davis Office of the Data Protection Commissioner
Jerome Morrissey  National Centre for Technology in Education (NCTE)
Luisón Lassala ANCHOR Educational & Youth Centre
Paul Durrant Internet Service Providers Association of Ireland (ISPAI) Hotline.ie Service
Gerry Roughneen Office of the Minister for Integration
Ronan Lupton Internet Service Providers Association of Ireland (ISPAI)
Sinead Gilligan Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment
Supt Fergus Healy An Gardaí Síochána
Tommy McCabe Irish Cellular Industry Association (ICIA)
Victora Read/Rachel O'Connell BEBO
Shay O’Malley ComReg
Áine Lynch National Parents Council Primary
Amy Callaghan Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children