Now You Have To Pay $1,000 If You Caught In Cyber-Bullying

New York Assemblywoman Jane Corwin has announced that she has authored and will introduce legislation to create the crime of cyber-bullying in the state of New York. This follows no the heels of the suicide of 14-year-old Jamey Rodemeyer after years of being bullied, including cyber-bullied.

Specifically, the bill creates the crime of cyber-bullying as a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of up to $1,000 and/or up to one year imprisonment. Furthermore, the legislation defines cyber-bullying as any repeated acts of abusive behavior communicating or causing communication to be sent by mechanical or electronic means, including posting statements on the Internet, or sending messages through a computer network. Such abusive behavior includes messages that are taunting, threatening, intimidating, insulting, tormenting, humiliating, embarrassing or sexually explicit, as well as other forms of hate mail.

Corwin stated that “Bullying is a long-standing problem among school-aged children in New York State, and throughout the nation. With the increasing accessibility of electronic means of communication, bullying has transformed from a predominantly school-based issue to a broader societal problem. Jamey’s story shocked our community – and other small communities across the nation – to its very core, and we cannot allow cyber-bullying to continue without penalty. We must take a firm stand against this destructive and devastating behavior.”

Roughly 28% of students between the ages of 12 and 18 have reported bullying; however, when it comes to cyber-bullying, that number is closer to 42% with 35% of students being threatened online.


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