With thousands of kids spending countless hours texting on their phones and frolicking on the virtual playground created by Facebook and other social media sites, it was inevitable that the same bad behaviors affecting the real world would carry over into cyberspace. The press has labeled the use of electronic media to criticize, threaten, embarrass or intimidate as “cyberbullying,” and recent incidents of “cyberbullying” by teens, in some cases leading to the suicide of the victim, have received a significant amount of attention. As society tends to do with an array of social ills affecting our youth, we have looked to the public school system to address the issue. Although efforts by school officials and politicians to curb harmful behavior are laudable, because cyberbullying involves the use of words and expression, efforts by state and federal legislatures, city councils and schools to limit such behavior necessarily bring into question constitutionally protected free speech rights. Before we even reach the constitutional issues, however, we should first consider whether the schools have the same authority to patrol the ethereal cyber playground comprised of bits and bytes as they do to oversee the physical playground comprised of swings and jungle gyms.
Please see full article below for more information.
Firefox recommends the PDF Plugin for Mac OS X for viewing PDF documents in your browser.
We can also show you Legal Updates using the Google Viewer; however, you will need to be logged into Google Docs to view them.
Please choose one of the above to proceed!
LOADING PDF: If there are any problems, click here to download the file.