CYBERBULLYING IN SOUTH AFRICA
Electronic media have experienced an exceedingly rapid take-up in South Africa. Pay-as-you-go mobile technology has made telephony accessible to the vast majority of the population who were previously un-connected. Along with these rapid advances comes the increasing potential for situations of cyber bullying. As cell phones are constantly being improved and upgraded, they allow more and more platforms for this online violence, such email platforms, the web, social networking sites and short messaging, as well as more traditional voice communication and smsing.
Despite these developments there is limited research on cyber bullying and sexting in South Africa. Due to this, the number of children involved with or who are subjected to cyber bullying are unclear. However some limited studies have been conducted. One of these studies was conducted in 2009 by the Centre for Justice and Crime Prevention.
South Africa is the fourth fastest growing mobile market in the world. Recent data shows that nearly 99% of the South African population belong to a mobile network operator.
Source used: Fine D, A Beginners Guide to Mobile Communications, Integrat Mobile Aggregation Services, 2008, p 11. Available at www.integrat.co.za [accessed 27/11/09].