Govt acts on cyber bullies

(New Zealand)The Government is accelerating moves to fight cyber-bullying in a bid to limit its devastating effects on young people.

Justice Minister Judith Collins said yesterday that she had asked the Law Commission to bring forward its recommendations on how to reduce the harm caused by cyber-bullies.

The announcement comes at the end of a week in which the Herald has run a high-profile campaign against bullying and investigated what more could be done to reduce it.

Last night, Ms Collins said she had met the commission this week and asked it to focus on cyber-bullying measures as part of its wider report into new media.

"The bullying issue ... is an extremely fast-moving issue, and as we know, 10 years ago, who had Facebook and Twitter?

"It has got to the stage for young people - they in particular are most prone to it - where people can put things on the internet, and it's there forever."

The commission's proposed changes include:

* A new offence of maliciously impersonating another person on the internet.
* Amending the Harassment Act to make it clear it covers racial, sexual and other harassment on the internet.
* Extending the Telecommunications Act's definition of misuse of a "telephone device"' to cover computers and other electronic devices.
* Applying the Human Rights Act to digital publications and designating cyberspace a "public place".
* Making incitement to suicide a criminal offence.


Post a Comment

Grace A Comment!