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Cyberpsychol Behav Soc Netw. 2015 Dec;18(12):704-10. doi: 10.1089/cyber.2015.0145. Epub 2015 Nov 5.

Use of Social Networking Sites and Risk of Cyberbullying Victimization: A Population-Level Study of Adolescents.

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1 Department of Epidemiology, Ottawa Public Health , Ottawa, Canada .
2 Centre for Addiction and Mental Health , Toronto, Canada .
3 Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto , Toronto, Canada .


Social networking sites (SNSs) have gained considerable popularity among youth in recent years; however, there is a noticeable paucity of research examining the association between the use of these web-based platforms and cyberbullying victimization at the population level. This study examines the association between the use of SNSs and cyberbullying victimization using a large-scale survey of Canadian middle and high school students. Data on 5,329 students aged 11-20 years were derived from the 2013 Ontario Student Drug Use and Health Survey. Logistic regression was used to examine the relationship between the use of SNSs and cyberbullying victimization while adjusting for covariates. Overall, 19 percent of adolescents were cyberbullied in the past 12 months. Adolescents who were female, younger, of lower socioeconomic status, and who used alcohol or tobacco were at greater odds of being cyberbullied. The use of SNSs was associated with an increased risk of cyberbullying victimization in a dose-response manner (p-trend <0.001). Gender was not a significant moderator of the association between use of SNSs and being cyberbullied. Results from this study underscore the need for raising awareness and educating adolescents on effective strategies to prevent cyberbullying victimization.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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