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The relationship of cyber bullying to empathy, gender, traditional bullying, internet use and adult monitoring

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2008
Topcu, Çiğdem
The present study aimed to investigate the cyber bullying and empathy relationship with respect to gender by utilizing the traditional bullying and empathy relationship. Additionally, the predictive role of traditional bullying, frequency use of information and communication tools, and adult monitoring of the Internet use on cyber bullying was examined. The sample consisted of 717 adolescents (411 females, 302 males) with a mean age of 16.83 (SD=1.46). Cyber Bullying Inventory (Erdur-Baker & Kavşut, 2007) was revised, Traditional Bullying Questionnaire was developed and Basic Empathy Scale (Jolliffe & Farrington, 2006) was adapted into Turkish and utilized in the present study. Results of the study pointed that 55.2% of the adolescents reported to engage in traditional bullying and 47.6% of them reported to involve in cyber bullying. Males’ scores were higher than females’ for both traditional and cyber bullying. Hierarchical multiple regression analyses indicated that traditional bullying and frequent use of ICT predicted cyber bullying well. Finally, results of multiple regression analyses indicated that gender was a mediating factor in the negative relationship between empathy and bullying. In other words, females who have higher empathy scores reported to have less frequent traditional and cyber bullying experience. Males who have lower empathy levels reported to have more frequent traditional and cyber bullying experience. However, gender did not moderate the negative relationship between empathy and bullying. Findings were discussed in the light of the literature.