At the Mom Inc Movement 2012 Tradeshow attendees watched the Just Like Wonder Woman music video (available on iTunes) while its producer/creator Adam Hurstfield & Amanda Todd’s mum Carol stood nearby. (Note to international readers: 15 year old Amanda Todd passed away recently following four years of intense online and face-to-face bullying combined with online exploitation.) Watching the video on a large screen, with Adam and Carol on hand, was a deeply moving experience and blew the power of the song wide open.
J. K. Rowling, of Harry Potter fame, explained recently to Jian Ghomeshi on CBC Q that social media’s reach (good and bad) invades the sanctity of a youth’s bedroom, 24/7. (You can find the podcast for the interview here.) In her talk, Carol Todd confirmed just how this happens. To parents who have said “look around you. Do you really think Amanda’s situation could possibly happen here?”, the answer should be “do you really think it’s impossible?” Amanda was bullied face-to-face and online, and was exploited by sinister, anonymous people on the Internet. These are three distinct problems that a youth you know could brush up against in everyday life. As an example, in a recent study at the London School of Economics one finding indicated that youth fear “sexting” from peers more than “stranger danger”.
As parents, teachers, aunties, uncles, grandparents, friends and community members, we can believe that we have the power to redefine what is acceptable & not acceptable for our families and communities. We can work together to develop a stronger delivery of services and information for youth and their caregivers. We can support youth as they find their own way to be strong in the face of adversity. Let’s not leave the protocols and standards related to social media usage to large corporations, where other interests muddy corporate ideals.
great JOY in being an Earth & Child advocate. standing up for all that’s precious in the world. — Raffi Cavoukian (@Raffi_RC) November 5, 2012
At the MIM2012 Tradeshow music producer Adam Hurstfield explained that he has supported many issues over the years, but now he has found a life long cause. He invited everyone listening to make the fight against face-to-face and online bullying, and the exploitation of youth online their cause. Or, he suggested, you could find another cause that will be your passion. Whatever you do, more than ever, the world needs people who care and want to make a change.
If you would like to follow BC Government initiatives, sign up on the Facebook and Twitter pages where information is already being shared. The staff members who manage these pages are active social media users and will reply to feedback that has been shared. Don’t worry – they aren’t black holes for feedback!
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Link to Carol Todd’s talk at the MIM2012 Tradeshow.
Building Amanda’s Army (BC Family page that contains related resource information).
Just Like Wonder Woman Tumblr site. (Share your story and photo in support.)
In Canada, The Kids Help Phone is a good place to send victims and people who are suffering. They are available 24/7. The toll free number is 1.800.668.6868
Youth can also log on to KidsHelpPhone.ca