Youth online bullying falling but prevalent

WASHINGTON (AP) – More young people are reaching out to family members after being harassed or taunted online, and it’s helping. At least a little.

A poll released Thursday by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research and MTV found incidents of “digital abuse” are still prevalent but declining somewhat. It found a growing awareness among teenagers and young adults about harm from online meanness and cyberbullying, as well as a slight increase among those willing to tell a parent or sibling.

The findings come a week after two Florida girls, ages 12 and 14, were arrested on felony charges for allegedly bullying online a 12-year-old girl who later killed herself by jumping off a tower at an abandoned concrete plant.

“I feel like we’re making progress. People should be encouraged,” said Sameer Hinduja, co-director of the Cyberbullying Research Center and professor at Florida Atlantic University.