Cyberbullying & Digital Drama

Connecting current events, social and emotional learning, technology, and art, Dirk Tiede, our Cyber Civics teacher and accomplished artist, created beautiful comic book panels to accompany a recent lesson on cyberbullying.

In every bullying situation, there are three main roles:

  1. The TARGET — the person being bullied.
  2. The BULLY — the person (or people) doing the harassing.
  3. The BYSTANDER — the person who watches the harassment happen but does nothing about it.

However, if you find yourself seeing someone else being bullied online, you can be an UPSTANDER and help put a stop to the situation.

How to be an UPSTANDER:

  1. Put yourself in the shoes of the person being bullied.
    -Try to imagine what they’re feeling like. (EMPATHIZE)
  2. Reach out to the TARGET privately. 
    Tell them that you recognize that what is happening to them is wrong.
    – Say something nice. Comfort them.
    – Encourage the person to ask for help from an adult if the situation seems out of control.
  3. You can SPEAK UP publicly and say that what you see happening is wrong.
    – You may encourage other BYSTANDERS to do the same, which can stop the bullying from happening
    – Remember what happened in the goalie’s case! (
    – Even if you don’t know the TARGET personally, your voice has power.
    – By speaking up for someone you don’t know, other people may be more likely to listen to you

But what if YOU become the TARGET of a bullying situation?

  1. STOP!

– Don’t respond to the bully. Being mean back to them may only make the situation worse.
– Take stock of what’s going. Recognize that you’re being harassed and you may need to seek help.
– Take a screenshot of the harassment to use as evidence should the need arrive.

  1. BLOCK!

– Block the person from the app or site so you don’t receive messages from them anymore.
– Unfriend or unfollow the person so you don’t see anything from them anymore.
– Leave the site or delete your account if you have to.

  1. TALK.

– Reach out to a trusted friend to talk about what’s going on. Don’t keep it to yourself.
– If possible, try to approach the bully in person and tell them to stop. Even if they brush you off, it can help.
– Talk to a trusted adult—parent, relative, family friend, or teacher—especially if things get out of hand.
– At our school, the teachers can help by stepping in as a mediator in situations like this between classmates
– Report the bully to the app or site, especially if the harassment does not stop. 
– If for any reason you don’t feel comfortable talking with any of the adults in your life, there are organizations that can help has volunteers who you can speak to anonymously via chat or phone

Most bullying situations can be resolved through TALKING, either by REACHING OUT or SPEAKING OUT. You have the power to stop these situations as an UPSTANDER, or by STOPPING, BLOCKING, and TALKING.

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