Internet - Stalking, Mobbing, Bullying, Harrasment...The Newest Trend of the 21st Century came so fast, that there hasn't even a Name created yet. No Dictionary or Thesaurus has definitions yet.
Psychologist, Police, Lawmakers are all trying
to catch up with this wave of Internet criminality.
Not only after the suicide death of several Teenagers
such as the widely broadcast one of Amanda Todd the
public and the Police organs scream for sharper and stricter laws fighting this menace.
They may get them sooner and stricter as they wished for. Already now in the Philippines, in spite of widespread protests, a new law called "Cybercrime Prevention Act" Republic Act No. 10175 threatens offenders with jail sentences of up to 15 years.
Although the phenomenon isn't something really new, since centuries malicious individuals used the Postal and Telecommunication System to harass their fellow citizens. Anonymous letters, the sick Phone Call, it has all been there since ages.
And so have the laws and punishment against those who abuse it. In the USA it the use of the mail or phone system for crimes was always even a federal offence which causes the FBI to investigate and harsher punishments for the culprits.
The only difference now is that sometimes the Crimes are committed from across borders and that regular Police officers are sometimes not trained to investigate the culprits.
But in reality it has become easier to find those committing the crimes, the internet meticulously records every trace back to its origin. Proxies, re-routing and other can slow down investigation, but ultimately the culprit will be caught.
But then what ? Convictions across borders are very difficult to obtain, and even if, how can this affect the Cyber Criminal ? After all, it is just a relatively small offence of defamation or insulting contents in the Internet and not murder.
Although victims may disagree and the real number of suicides caused by those criminals can only be guessed, as most victims remain silent about their real reasons.
However, the percentage of criminals which operate cross borders is insignificant, most Stalker, Mobber, Bullies etc. are within the neighbourhood or at least the same country. And therefore can be found and prosecuted.
And then there is also some cooperation of the Internet Service Providers such as Google, Facebook and others, which more and more become aware, that the liberty of the freedom of speech is becoming endangered through those reckless individuals.
Yes, the right of free speech, which was fought for by our forefathers under great loss of life comes more and more under attack due to those Cyber criminals and if not stopped will eventually, at least in the Internet, lead to a new age of censorship.
In a sad context this reminds one of terrorism, which also may have not achieved anything in their Terror attacks except stricter laws and the dismantlement of more and more freedoms of the citizens.
But it would give far too much credit to stalkers and internet harrassers to even suggest that they have an (Terrorist) Agenda. Stalker, Mobber, and other Internet Troll are all psychologically challenged people.
The Police and Prosecution organs classify them simply in two categories :
Psychopathic Personality and Psychotic Personality (Vernon Geberth, 1996)
|Psychopathic Personality Stalker||Psychotic Personality Stalker|
|Generally male||May be male or female|
|Absence of mental disorder||Delusions or delusional fixation|
|Targets familiar victims||Usually targets strangers|
|Harassment may be anonymous||Attempt to contact the victim|
|Usually some precipitating stressor||Absence of precipitating stressor|
The above may very much resemble the profiling of a serial killer, which isn't coincidental.
Cyber Stalking, Mobbing, Bullying isn't to be taken "easy" or "forget about it".
For the victims it very much feels like Murder or Rape.
Not for nothing the German word for defamations is "Rufmord" which means "Reputation murder".
For Amanda Todd it was.
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