“Judge Me, Or Be There For Me”: How Can Narratives Be Used to Encourage Action and Intervention by Parents, Schools, the Police, Policymakers, and Other Children?
In 2012 Canadian teenager Amanda Todd used a YouTube video to communicate her experience of repeated harassment, bullying and cyberbullying (Todd, 2012). That video has now been viewed by over 20 million people. Amanda’s persecution followed a web-based sextortion campaign by a Dutch predator, Aydin Coban, who had taken a screen shot of Amanda flashing her breasts when she was 12, following a year of his online teasing and cajoling. Although Amanda moved schools twice, and also moved cities, her tormentor pursued her repeatedly prompting Amanda’s classmates to judge her, rather than him. Using flashcards to explain her own position, Amanda hit back with a compelling visual narrative. The result is one of the most widely watched child-produced videos ever made. It’s also very distressing: five weeks later, Amanda took her life. This chapter considers Amanda Todd’s experience of cyberbullying and stalking, and her responses to the online harassment, as a case study to explore the use of victims’ narratives to encourage action and intervention by parents, schools, police, policymakers and other children.
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