Cyber bullying is something that most teenagers have to deal with, either indirectly or directly. Three Rotorua Lakes High School students talk to reporter Kyra Dawson about the damage it can cause and share some of their own advice.

Girls are the worst

A 17-year-old girl said with social media being part of everyday life it was hard to not know someone who had been cyberbullied even if you hadn't been a victim yourself.

"I've definitely been cyberbullied, I've seen it, I've had it done to me, it's on Facebook."

She said people would write comments on Facebook saying she had done things she hadn't done.


"Horrible things, it's normally girls. It's boyfriend issues, that's all I see. I think Facebook and all the social networks need to become more on to it and when you put in a complaint they need to actually take them away from Facebook, take their page down because if that doesn't happen they can just get on and do it again.

"The sites need to become more aware. I feel like people should just let you know to your face if they have a problem with you otherwise they don't have to think about it as much and they can't see how it actually affects the other person - keyboard warriors, that's what they're called."

Treat it as a joke

A 17-year-old boy said it was really easy for bullies to hide behind their phones. "I wouldn't say I have been cyberbullied. If people try to bully me I just take it as a joke. I have seen it happen. It's usually just fights and arguments that people wouldn't say if they were face to face.

"They think they are strong talking down to each other over social media."

He said it was important to try to not take stuff too personally.

"Sometimes it can get out of hand when you're reading something, but if they are going to type it instead of saying it to your face they obviously don't mean it as much."

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21 May, 2016 9:00am
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He said if someone really meant something they should say it to you because that's what he would do.

Pushed aside

Another 17-year-old girl said whenever it happened to her she would just push it aside and try not to worry about it.

"It's like, okay, you can do that if you want to but I'm not going to worry about it. I just choose not to listen to them.

"I think it's important to speak up and talk about it if it's happening to you, it always helps if you ask for help."

She said there was always an option to block cyberbullies, but sometimes that could leave a temptation to go back and see if they were still trying to bully you.

"I feel like everybody's just on their phones these days, nobody even talks to each other, I think we need to put our phones down more."