cyberbullying? dislike!

About the project

Virtual worlds are inhabited by many positive experiences, but also by pestering nuisances and ferocious vigilantes. The second group uses the Internet, sometimes  cloaked by its relative anonymity, as their worldwide stage and gain enormous attention for negative behaviour. Digital vigilantes in turn condemn negative online behaviour, and are notorious for extra-legal actions against perceived negative online behaviour. Both kinds of actions may have profound socio-psychological consequences for individuals, which raises the questions whether and, if so, how to regulate. Anti-social behaviour may be regulated socially, legally and technologically and each regulatory modality can be more or less effective depending on the behaviour and context involved.

In the current project which titled “Empowering and protecting children and adolescents against cyberbullying” we highlight three perspectives, this is a social-scientific, technological, and legal perspective. Moreover, the project investigates relevant factors in the ways adolescent users of virtual worlds perceive and empower themselves against negative behaviour. The research objective is to apprehend the possibilities for protection and empowerment of individuals against online anti-social behaviour through (a combination of) different kinds of regulatory modalities.

Several articles about this project have appeared in the media. Here are a few of them:

  1. (1)Giving a voice to kids online, see

  2. (2)Use experience, not apps to deal with cyberbullying: expert, see

  3. (3)Online Pispaal – Is pesterij via internet echt een probleem? (page 74), see