Steffen Zdun

Polizeiakademie Niedersachsen

The subjective strain for those affected by cyberbullying and the relevance of the offenses for police work

This article addresses the subjective stress experienced by victims of cyberbullying among young people and what this means for police work. The results are based on qua­litative interviews with 40 young people. The key findings are presented in a condensed form and compared with the current state of research. In particular, the unstable social climate, the competition for recognition and the avoidance of victimization, which is anticipated as a constant risk, are addressed. Insights are given into the individual experience of stress and victim blaming. The taboo nature of the use of cyberbullying, but also of victimization, are discussed as well. Afterwards, the relevance of anonymity and the use of anonymous online profiles are addressed, especially the damage of the latter, which can be perceived as very stressful. The key findings are analysed in terms of aspects relevant to the police.