Custom «Bullying in the Digital Age» Essay Paper Sample

Bullying in the Digital Age

The internet is a vast source of information with online libraries and other sources, a source of entertainment with both adult and family content, a conduit of communication with the use of Skype, emails, face book and twitter and a channel to offer one’s perspective on issues with the use of blogs and discussion panels. These are some of the advantages of internet not to mention that some people make an honest and reasonable living out of doing work through the internet. On the other hand, the internet may cause trauma to children and parents alike due to lack of privacy, exposure of children and youth to sexual predators and cyber bullying. This paper is an analysis of three sources on the psychological impact of the vices of internet on parents and children. The paper analysis the rhetoric skills used to address the issues in delivery of the themes of the sources.

The first reference is an extract from a journal titled “online predators and their victims” written by four authors namely Wolak, Finkelhor, Ybarra and Mitchell with each author tackling a theme on the article. The source analyzes the ways in which the sexual predators operate statutory implications of their activities and give advice on how to avoid being a victim. The first topic of discussion in the article is how the predators operate. This analysis is given from an authority perspective using ethos literary skills where the writers have a clear understanding on the subject because they have done previous work on the subject. The writers for instance argue that the report given by some researchers is incorrect in that predators do not coerce their victims into sexual acts but rather take their time to seduce them by establishing a personal relationship with them (Wolak et. al, 112, 3).

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The writers also use logical arguments (logos literary skills) to support their facts which include citing data from previous research works on the same issue. For instance, the writers quoted a previous study and the data derived from the research to show that most youths understand the age of the person they converse with online in which most are adults who do not take their time to deceive the victims that they are young themselves (Wolak et. al, 112, 3). They also show that most victims meet the predators face to face on a number of occasions using supportive data from previous research (Wolak et. al, 113, 1).

The other central theme in the article is an analysis on why youth fall prey to the predators. Using supportive data, the writers argue that it is not naiveté due to immaturity or due to the age of the victims that makes them fall prey to sexual offenders. In this case the writers use logos as the preferred rhetorical skill because evidence is important in this case to support their claim. The writers argue that the youths who are most vulnerable to falling victims understand the complexities of internet usage at a level comparable to that of adults (Wolak et. al, 115, 3).

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The writers argue that some victims may generate attachment towards the sexual offenders thus making it hard to discipline the offender or even harder to counsel the youth victim. This is because according to the writers, adolescents who fall victim to sexual predators can understand the intricacies of sexuality and sexual offences at an adult level (Wolak et. al, 124, 1). This position is an argument from an authority point of view aided with research from other writers who are an authority on the subject. The writers use ethos rhetorical skills where they try to convince the readers about their argument by citing arguments from other authors who have done previous work on the subject. This shows that they understand their field and have done research towards the same. The parents are affected by the fact that they are not able to monitor how their children use the internet. This is because the avenues by which a youth can access the internet are increasing with the use of phones which are internet enabled.

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The second reference article is titled “Use of Social Networking Sites in Online Sex Crimes against Minors: An Examination of National Incidence and Means of Utilization” written by four writers namely Mitchell, Finkelhor, Jones and Wolak. This article analyzes the impact of sexual offences through the internet by analyzing the research findings on arrests made and following up on particular cases that were relevant to the study.

The writers used mail to contact the victims of offenders of sexual acts and followed up with a phone interview if the cases were relevant to the study. To show the impact of how the offenders operate the writers carried a research and their analysis of the topic is basically formulated from the findings. The preference of carrying a primary research on the subject shows that the authors understand their subject and seeks to support their arguments using relevant and current evidence. This is use of ethos and logos as the main rhetorical skills in this article.

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The writers show that victims are affected by the way the offenders operate in that they use pictures and personal information on social networking sites (SNS) to coerce the victims into engaging in sexual activities. This is done through distribution of pictures and personal information to others using the social networking sites of the offenders or the victims (Mitchell et. al, 3, 9). To bring forward this argument, logos as a rhetorical skill is used by quoting the findings (statistics) of the research and deducing a logical argument from the results. The victims are also traumatized to learn that their information is available to sexual offenders where the offender uses the social network sites to access information such as likes or dislikes, home or school, the daily schedule of the victim and look at the pictures of the victim (Mitchell et. al, 3, 10).

The analysis of trauma on the victim and parents extends to the fact that the offenders use the internet to get to the friends and family members of the victim. The offenders usually do so or threaten to do so therefore coercing the victims to give more personal information or to engage in sexual relations (Mitchell et. al, 3, 11). The offenders also use the internet as a communication conduit when talking to their victims. This may be traumatic to children especially because the content of the conversations are beyond their level of understanding. To bring forth this argument, the authors use logos literary skills by quoting the data as received from a primary research they conducted.

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The writers depict the preferences of the offenders by compiling an analysis of their background from the study. The offenders may like a certain online location to attract victims or they may be convicted sexual offenders on earlier crimes. This data is used by the writers to argue their point that the sexual offenders who use the internet do not display major differences in their characteristics from those who do not use online sites to commit crimes. There is evidence of use of ethos as the prevailing rhetorical skill in this case because the authors seem to have experience drafting offenders’ profiles.

The writers also use the research results to show that the places where the online crime stake place in relation to the sites visited by the young people are not risky areas in most times. They are mostly primarily sites for communication purposes. These sites are hard to monitor because they are sites where people interact freely giving their personal information at will and engaging gin conversations at will. In this regard, the writers argue that there are more risky places that re online and that can be used by the offenders yet their preference is on sites where there is minimal speculation as to their intentions.

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Finally, the writers argue that youths are not particularly at risk when interacting on SNSs. This is drawn from their research which showed that the youth behaviour is the one that contribute s to the crime involving sex rather than the increase in sites of social networking. They suggest that the research should be directed towards finding effective tools and modes of aligning youth behaviour against sexual activities and d involvement in sexual acts online. This argument is derived from the results as well as from the ethical perspective of the writers thus appealing to the minds of the readers using logos and ethos rhetorical skills.

Using their ethical perspective, the writers argue that technology change is very dynamic in the current times and the parents, administration and law enforcers do not catch up with the intricacies of the technology fast enough to stop cyber crimes. On the other hands youths are able to explore one technology fast enough to engage in crimes and offenders before anyone can notice. They argue this in an effort to stress the fact that focusing on the behaviour model of the youth when dealing with online interactions is beneficial to combat sexual offences because despite the site, the youths can carry the behaviors across from one site to another (Mitchell et. al, 8, 1).

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Reference three is a book titled “Cyber Bullying: Bullying in the Digital Age” written by three authors namely Kowalski, Limber and Agatston. The book is an analysis of cyber bullying as a large scale weapon of embarrassment and discrimination. The authors argue that parents view the internet as a tool to help their children with homework and cellular phones as gadgets to help children call home incase of emergencies. This is not a mutual ground with the children because they view the internet and the phone as tools important for their social life. Cyber bullying takes place as a result of internet interaction or instant messaging. The authors use statistics (logos rhetorical skills) from previous research and studies to show that most online harassment is done by friends or acquaintances of the victim (Kowalski, Limber and Agatston, 8, 1).

Using results of earlier studies, the authors argue that the internet affects the psychological makeup of an individual by extending their world, giving them confidence to communicate and in maintaining existing relationships and acquaintances (Kowalski, Limber and Agatston, 8, 2). This is a logical argument based on the evidence from previous research work. Combining ethos and pathos as the preferred rhetorical skills, the writers seek to explain to the readers why the internet is preferred as a means of enlarging one’s social life as follows. The internet gives people an opportunity to reveal their secret information which they would not otherwise do on a face-to-face conversation. This they argue has the potential to increase the social life of youths and adolescents and enhance their learning capacities.

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The authors use examples of online sites that can cause psychological damage to an individual by harming their self esteem. The authors cite a dating site where a most attractive person gets positive comments about their looks. Negative comments posted about one’s physical appearance could be more damaging the glory derived from receiving positive feedback (Kowalski, Limber and Agatston, 10, 1). This is evidence of use of pathos rhetorical skills by appealing to the emotions of the reader who can relate to the online dating concept.

According to research done on adverse psychological effects of internet, the authors assert that high level of internet usage is associated with loneliness and depression. On the subject of cyber bullying, the authors use logos rhetorical skills by citing previous research and studies to show that a large percent to f children go online with the intention of hurting others. The research also showed that a majority of the children had received hurtful and mean postings from others, while others had felt threatened at one time because someone had harassed them online (Kowalski, Limber and Agatston, 10, 3).











This paper recommends that young people should be encouraged to base their social life on interactions that are viable and real. This means that they should not base their relationships on shallow knowledge of their interests, looks and other personal information that can be easily derived form the internet. The young people should be taught to view the internet as a mode of getting information on education matters and research of interest to the world. They should also be taught to use the internet to be heard by the right authorities in expressing their grievances. This could help them reduce the chances of falling victim to cyber harassment whether sexual or social.

The three references all point to the one conclusion. They all suggest that the important thing in combating cyber crimes is by focusing on the behaviour of young children, adolescents and youths in their interaction over the internet. They also suggest that the parents as well as the law enforcers should be on the alert to detect the use of technology in committing of crimes. The parents and educators should take it upon themselves to educate the young ones on the use of internet and the safety rules and regulations they should adhere to in avoiding being victims of cyber crimes. The sources also agree on the fact that internet activities can be detrimental to the psychological make up of the victims as well as parents.

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Logical (logos) rhetorical skill is mostly used with research results being the major source of information and data in all three references. Arguments are based on the data collected from a primary research or through credible secondary sources. The authors have also used the views of other authors who are an authority on the subject.

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