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What are Internet Harassment Laws?

By Henry Gaudet
Updated May 16, 2024
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Internet harassment laws make it a criminal act to use the Internet to threaten, torment, stalk, intimidate or otherwise distress a person. Legislation and enforcement varies from one jurisdiction to another, but Internet harassment laws are put in place to protect potential victims from the trauma of cyberstalking, cyberbullying and other forms of internet harassment. In some regions, provisions have been made within broader harassment laws specifically relating to the Internet and other forms of communication.

Legal definitions of Internet harassment vary slightly from one region to another, but most jurisdictions agree on the basic principles. Internet harassment is an attempt to use email or another form of electronic communication to torment, threaten, stalk or perform some similar act that would cause distress to a reasonable person. When determining the difference between simple rudeness and criminal harassment, authorities are likely to consider issues such as the attacker’s apparent intent, the frequency of the remarks or postings, evidence of premeditation or information gathering, whether others were encouraged to participate in these acts and whether remarks or attacks were directed specifically at the victim.

For those found guilty, the penalties for violating Internet harassment laws depend on the severity of the attacks and the jurisdiction. Harassment convictions can result in fines, community service or a prison sentence. If the victim made previous attempts to make the attacker stop, or if the attacker engaged in other illegal activities such as hacking to harass the victim, sentencing is likely to be harsher.

Before 1990, there was little that could be done legally to deter harassment in any form, whether through the new internet, over the phone, or even in person. California was the first state in the United States to pass anti-stalking legislation, with other states passing similar laws in the following years. These laws, written long before the days of text messaging and social media websites, were designed primarily to prevent predatory stalking.

In 1996, the U.S. Congress passed the Communications Decency Act. This act, originally written to protect the public from harassing phone calls, was rephrased to include any telecommunications device. Although some other clauses of this act were found unconstitutional because of an infringement of free speech, the articles on Internet harassment were not challenged.

Even with the Communications Decency Act, most anti-harassment legislation is done at the state level. California was first to address cyberstalking in 1999, and many other states have passed specific Internet harassment laws. Still others have made provisions in existing anti-harassment laws to deal with Internet communications.

Other countries have passed Internet harassment laws as well. For instance, the British Parliament passed the Malicious Communications Act in 1998. International cooperation has been effective in addressing other forms of Internet-based crime, but issues surrounding jurisdiction remain problematic with the Internet, because even the way the crime is defined by various Internet harassment laws can vary greatly.

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Discussion Comments
By anon994123 — On Jan 16, 2016

I'm currently going through a cyberbullying and harassment situation right now. I recently had to quite my job because I could no longer put up with my coworkers constant hateful remarks about the false information that was being posted online about me. There are two websites that I know of, where the false profiles were being made.

They are fake profiles that I assume my ex-husband, his friends and family are posting, pretending to be me. Somehow they have stolen my personal pictures and found out where I work, then post remarks making me look like a racist and child abuser to name a few. It is unfortunate that there are so few laws and resources available to help people in this situation. It does get really tiring when you can not go out in public without people screaming derogatory remarks at you.

By anon986242 — On Jan 23, 2015

I'm wondering about all those "rate-me" sites out there, but not the ones that you subject yourself to. I'm concerned about the rate your teacher, lawyer, doctor, coach, etc.

Given an anonymous forum, people can say some pretty nasty things and can be so hurtful. Of course, it's all one-sided, no way for anyone to defend themselves, and an extremely biased sampling of ratings.

As a professional, it is so defeating to work hard, do your best, then be blasted by an anonymous someone with often-misdirected anger who just wants to blow off some steam. That rating stays out there and is emotionally damaging.

Does anyone know if there are regulations for those that provide the forums? I certainly didn't ask to be a part of their list. Can I request to have my name taken off their site?

By anon938132 — On Mar 08, 2014

Is it cyber harassment if a person posts a letter on a newspaper's public facebook site calling me a liar? They also said I told lies which helped a person commit theft and hide. And they said I filed false complaints about them. I was never charged with filing false complaints. Is this cyber harassment?

I had to track down people who were handling the investigation of the theft to make sure I was not being considered a suspect because I did have nothing to do with it. I left the organization a month before the investigation took place because I had misgivings about certain officers in the organization. I believe this person is harassing me by posting these things. They also contacted officers in the organization about me and said I lied and posted the same things on a newspaper's web site too.

By anon937073 — On Mar 03, 2014

Okay, so now what do we do about the people who may have blocked because they were bullied on the Affordable Healthcare Act page, but the people who got blocked turned around and created fake pages that we cannot block?

We have asked that they leave us alone. We have reported their fake pages to Facebook only to be ignored. We have even reported their comments and if Facebook does anything about it, it might be to block them for 12 hours so they can't post, but then as soon as the block is lifted, they are right back at it all over again harassing, bullying, intimidating, threatening and abusing the same people all over again!

People share a positive success story with the new ACA law, and immediately these cowards hiding behind these fake pages attack! It's like they are out for blood. We cannot block a person who is hiding behind a fake page.

By anon928432 — On Jan 28, 2014

@anon928432: You're using the "sticks and stones" analogy. Let's see that analogy work when there is a cowardly piece of crap who copies your pics from FB and Twitter, even if your pages are protected.

Let's see you use that analogy when someone slanders you, using these pics claiming you have a different sexual orientation or making up quotes that you would never say.

Let's see you use that analogy when people have their addresses and pics of where they live splattered all over the Internet. Let's see you use that analogy when you have to restrain yourself from beating the crap out of that person when you see them, just to prevent your friends being embarrassed, or perhaps getting arrested yourself. That's what the "Sticks and stones" analogy will get you!

By anon360304 — On Dec 26, 2013

Has anyone ever heard the expression, "Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never hurt me"?

Until these people show up at someone's door with a weapon and try to physically harm them, people need to stop allowing them to win by reacting -- by giving them the satisfaction.

By anon358838 — On Dec 13, 2013

What if your ex is posting video/pictures and created a blog about you and also posted legal court documents with your name and home address?

By anon355467 — On Nov 16, 2013

By anon349730 — On Sep 28, 2013

I am on the opposite end. I had a relationship with my ex husband, and there is a permanent restraining order. I've had things missing from my home and other people were involved. A man I was dating and lived with (engaged to), and his ex wife were involved in a business situation and was personal with him, which he constantly denied and every year about the same time, she would make sure her Facebook got hacked. Things would actually show up in my home.

I was warned about a few situations occurring with this man, that he was a con artist. I would come home from work (I am training in the legal profession) and I started noticing certain things happening. Something had unplugged my computer after I left and had dragged the cord across the room. When I came home, he was sitting in front of my computer with the cord plugged in.. He said he was looking for a job. The guy didn't work. He did before in a business she financially contributed to, but she fired him to make sure he was getting paid under what he was supposed to for his age.

When I started up my computer, the time was constantly changed on my computer when I was gone. His friends from her business started showing up wherever I was with my daughter, and they started heading off to the other side of the neighborhood (she owns property here). It was a very intense situation. We have cameras in our neighborhood, so the actual time after the fact would show I wasn't even here. When we split, he was already with a few other women here. A 20 pound flower pot went missing off my front porch, and when I contacted the association, which apparently knows the guy and his ex wife very well, they would not help me because they claim someone had stolen the neighbors' flowers around the same time (I filed a police report).

So here's my question: I asked the police and the association to pull the videotapes since they had them. If they weren't setting this up, why wouldn't they pull the tapes? Be very aware of those who know how to play this game up front. They swap cars and send their friends down to the next city to pull over to the side of the road to take pictures of me when I have office appointments and then when I walk in the neighborhood, they are always right in front of me.

I am not moving. I have three girls (teenagers) and my rent is low. The intimidation is out of hand. It's something they need to get over. The older they get (he and his ex wife both are in their 60's) the better they are at the intimidation game. You would think this man is a teddy bear when you first meet him. I assure you he is not.

I handed over a few pages of his handwriting to my attorney and have contacted the Federal Bureau of Investigation, who in turn encouraged me to contact the FCC. Enough is enough. I now have a camera and security system in my home. His rent has been up and his car remains in front of my home. I am tired of this. I have too much real work to do.

By amypollick — On Sep 16, 2013

@anon348318: For someone like this, about the only thing you can do is go off the grid, so to speak. You can file a complaint with Facebook, but it may or may not do any good.

My suggestion: *Completely* delete your Facebook profile, change your cell number (get a new phone, if necessary) and delete all your current e-mail accounts. Set up a new email with a more secure service, like Google, and do not give the address to anyone -- even your partner. Have texting turned off for your cell phone for at least six months or so, or have it limited to your partner's phone and maybe your mom.

Stay offline as much as possible for the next six months or so. Before you go offline, tell the ex she can show the pictures to whomever she likes, that she can put them on a billboard if she wants to, because you've already informed your family about them and they're OK with it. Doesn't matter whether it's true or not -- just tell her that. Once she thinks people know anyway, it breaks the power of her threats. There's nothing she can hold over your head anymore.

It's a pain, and it's not fair that you should have to be the one to do all the work, but she's obviously mentally unbalanced and you need to cut off all access. If she still gets access somehow, I hate to say it, but it could be your partner telling her the information. If that happens, you probably need to ask her if he still has feelings for her, and base your next decisions on what he says. Good luck.

By anon348318 — On Sep 15, 2013

I live in New Zealand, and for the past two years, a girl in the Philippines has been continuously harassing me through text messages, phone calls, emails and Facebook. No matter how many times I block her, she appears again in another way. This girl is my partner’s ex-girlfriend, but still says they are engaged and now that I’m pregnant, she says he will leave me anyway.

He is not doing anything about it. He is just telling me to ignore her. She has exclusive photos of me from my partner’s email she hacked into and threatens to show my entire family if I don't leave him. She harasses my friends and family and will never stop. She is sending me harsh messages and telling me to go to hell, sending pictures I don’t wish to see, threats against me and causing a lot of grief and stress that I don’t need.

I’m looking for a way that I can stop her once and for all. I’m not a nasty girl and I don’t wish to hurt anybody, but I’m also tired of getting my head messed with time after time when I feel I do not deserve it. I’ve tried to talk to people in the Philippines to make her stop and nothing. I’ve tried ignoring her, but still she’s there. Is there anywhere I can make a formal complaint to make the harassment stop?

By anon348250 — On Sep 15, 2013

Somebody threatened my friend that he was going to post my friends hacked videos on the net, and he did on Facebook a month ago but didn't made it public. Now he is threatening my friend again. Please tell us what to do.

By anon347894 — On Sep 11, 2013

I'm not a minor, but I'm being tormented by a minor who is consistently looking at my page (I have proof through trackers) and posting rude things on her own page that are directed at me. Is there any way to get it to stop?

By anon345907 — On Aug 23, 2013

@Ronburg: The laws are there to protect us and tell us why something is wrong. What you're advocating is vigilantism and taking the law into our own hands. The problem with that is, vigilantism usually ends with someone dead or handicapped.

I'm not saying you should not defend yourself from assault, but don't try to be judge, jury and executioner. Going out for revenge will only make you as bad as a criminal crying about how you didn't mean to kill the guy or have the situation get that out of hand.

By anon344089 — On Aug 05, 2013

Can telling someone to kill themselves be counted as cyber bullying or cyber harassment?

By anon342172 — On Jul 18, 2013

What do I do if someone I have been seeing for a while gets obsessed and threatens to post bad pictures and videos on internet to tarnish my image? Please help. I am so stressed out. I need to know what to do before going to the embassy.

By anon340365 — On Jul 02, 2013

Unfortunately, this is why we can't have nice things, i.e. Internet anonymity.

For people who are woefully ignorant of the freedom of speech amendment, you need to do your research.

Freedom of speech doesn't cover all speech. It's been so before the Internet and hasn't changed.

The main exceptions to free speech protection include: Defamation (includes libel and slander); obscenity; Fighting words: As defined by the Supreme Court, fighting words are "those which by their very utterance inflict injury or tend to incite an immediate breach of the peace." Causing panic: The classic example of speech causing panic is someone yelling "Fire!" in a crowded movie theater. Speech may be suppressed where a reasonable person would know that his speech is likely to cause panic and/or harm to others. Incitement to crime: Speech that spurs another to commit a crime. Sedition: Speech that advocates unlawful conduct against the government or the violent overthrow of the government.

By anon334712 — On May 14, 2013

Is it right for a minor to claim 'cyberbully' charges on me when she is the one who stalked my page numerous times, and started calling me rude names? Is it possible to press counter charges if necessary?

By anon333716 — On May 07, 2013

This law is unconstitutional, as the constitution says that congress cannot make any law abridging the freedom of speech.

By anon332687 — On Apr 30, 2013

Where do I go if I want to report someone? My friend is being cyber harassed.

By anon327683 — On Mar 29, 2013

Punishment is good. It teaches people you can't just do whatever you want to whoever you want in life. Try to love other people instead of spreading negativity around. Love one another, instead. It's a positive thing to show others you're not out to hurt them.

By anon326595 — On Mar 22, 2013

What if I post on Facebook a negative hint about my ex, like he is bisexual. He never was on my friends list, and I was never on his.

He took me to court, and won a no-contact order for me writing a reminiscing type love e-mail after he "ordered" me to stop (my biggest mistake).

Can he cause trouble again? If the order says he cannot contact me, why is he looking on my Facebook page daily, where I say the truth without mentioning his name or photo? Is this freedom of speech?

He already changed his number and blocked my e-mail, before the court date. Can they close my Facebook, which is how I communicate with my European relatives. I am heartbroken after a 10-year love affair and financial ruin.

By anon326309 — On Mar 21, 2013

What happened to freedom of speech on the internet? So I'm to assume that now days if I'm in chat or on a forum and I tell someone I think they're a moron, I can get sued for bullying? (i.e., harassment). While some people might think this is a good thing, it is absolutely not! Walking on eggshells online will destroy the freedom of speech and expression that the internet has provided people for so many years.

This is what happens when you have a group of people who can't tolerate free speech. The internet was the last and only place to actually go to where a person could speak their mind in truth and honesty without walking on eggshells.

My opinion is if you're in a chatroom or forum and your school mates or co-workers become critical, then just log out or close the browser or surf elsewhere. Don't wimp out and whine that somebody was bullying you or whine and cry because someone called you a moron. And if someone kills or injures themselves over such an incident, then so be it. It would've occurred sooner or later anyway, regardless of what was or wasn't said in the chat room!

By anon316101 — On Jan 27, 2013

It's me, anon315414. Guess what? Those people I mentioned had followed through with the threats and made it an international incident. Now people of Japan and many other countries want justice for the man who is crippled -- the one who had committed suicide and failed -- the one I tried to stop from doing those things.

The people are helping those two brothers and they want me dead. And they are out to kill me. I just might end up being like Amanda Todd: being falsely accused when I did not cause the man to be crippled, since those two brothers had sprouted lies about me for something I did not do.

By anon316008 — On Jan 26, 2013

I have a sexual harasser. I sent her some nude pics. I made that huge mistake, and now she is threatening me to send them to mi girl. I told my girl, but now what I am really afraid of is seeing them all over the internet. I know this was not smart at all, but it is now done, and if she continues bothering me, I will file a complaint. I am in a third world country so please help. She is from Canada and live in Switzerland.

By amypollick — On Jan 24, 2013

@anon315414: You committed no crime, so you cannot be charged with anything at all. Period. You need to report these posts to Facebook and get these creeps banned. Sounds like they're a couple of nutcases who like to harass innocent people.

You also have no way of knowing if one of them tried to commit suicide or not. If they're willing to make death threats, they're willing to lie to you.

My advice is to delete your Facebook profile, stay away for a couple of months, then create a new profile and do *not,* under any circumstances, allow someone you do not know to friend you. Period. Also, lock down your profile settings so *only* friends can contact you, see your posts, and post anything on your wall, or see your pictures. But most important, do *not* friend people you don't know.

If these jerks are on another continent, there's not much they can do to you on Facebook except say nasty, mean things. But do report the death threats. The administration needs to know so they can delete the profiles.

By anon315414 — On Jan 24, 2013

What if a person threatens to kill me, calls me a slut, says he hopes that I die and also hopes to ruin my life through his country's government and my country's government? Can he be charged and is this also internet harassment?

I have received two death threat messages from those two people who I had only known for few weeks on Facebook. They try to put all the blame on me for causing one of them to commit suicide. I tried to stop the person from committing suicide. But there is not much I could do online, but try telling him to stop. But he did it anyway and survived.

I know I am part of the blame for him trying to commit suicide, but I did not tell him to do those things. He did it himself, and he is now crippled, since he had apparently cut himself. These two people are from another country and continent than mine. I wish to know will I be sentenced or will they be sentenced for the death threats they send? Sorry if my post is confusing.

By anon310321 — On Dec 21, 2012

What happens if I got my Facebook hacked, and they threatened somebody I do not know, but do know someone who was very recently in trouble for apparently cyber bullying them but no evidence was found. could I be charged even if I said sorry and said there was nothing for them to worry about?

By anon309305 — On Dec 15, 2012

I have a question. What if someone is harassing and accusing you of being on a web porn video and it's not you. What can you do?

By amypollick — On Nov 17, 2012

@anon303837: When the harassment goes from the Internet into the real world, the charges change. Internet harassment is one thing; beating someone up is assault. If the injuries are serious enough, it can go into the realm of aggravated assault. This is a high-grade felony, and carries serious jail time. If you're a minor and your assailant is over 18, the charges are even more serious.

The punishment depends on the laws where you live. They differ from state to state and country to country. You can probably find out the sentencing guidelines by looking up the criminal code for where you live. Most are online.

By anon303837 — On Nov 16, 2012

What if you are a teen and someone's harassing you and threatening and they beat you up? What is the punishment?

By amypollick — On Nov 14, 2012

@trod7979: If you have screenshot images of the harassing posts, e-mail them to Facebook and start the complaint process.

Also, make sure your Facebook profile is locked down. In the privacy settings, make sure only "friends" can see your posts and can post on your wall. Only accept friend requests from people you know personally, and every single time you see something from her, report the post as abuse.

It's not cheap, but also contact an attorney. He or she may be able to write a "cease and desist" letter that might solve the problem. If not, you can always pursue legal action.

First though, report everything to Facebook, lock down your profile, and otherwise, completely ignore her. Your friends won't believe her garabge, anyway.

By trod7979 — On Nov 14, 2012

I have a harassment problem with my boyfriend's ex. She keeps contacting me and his family through facebook and spreading nasty rumors. We block her every time, but somehow, she keeps creating new accounts. I am ready to start legal action against her! I've saved and printed her messages. She is a psycho and needs to be stopped. She needs to stop trying to ruin other people's lives!

By anon299196 — On Oct 24, 2012

Is it harassment when you find emails from single woman asking for your husband's privates in a bow among other things? It is very hard to believe she is just a friend. I did offer to share her emails with her family.

By fedup2012 — On Oct 17, 2012

I really need some help. My ex has filed a harassment suit against me with the justice of the peace. When I called to ask for discovery there is none. He showed my child his so-called evidence and it is simply me texting to no one cause he apparently deleted everything he said to me and just printed out my messages. Of course, I have all the texts with both people talking.

How in the world can you file charges against someone with no evidence -- even through the justice of the peace. And apparently there needs to be a stop to this in this county.

When I went to the arraignment, I was never once asked for any type of evidence. And his lies have the judge not even looking in my general direction. He has humiliated me completely in my own county which he no longer lives in. I can't walk out of the house without getting snide looks from not only law enforcement, but people I have known for years. What do I do to prepare my case if I don't know the evidence against me?

By anon284327 — On Aug 09, 2012

I am a moderator at a social site. I was wondering what my rights are regarding harassment from a user. Specifically, do workplace harassment laws carry over to websites?

By anon273763 — On Jun 08, 2012

I'm being harassed right now. People on this site think it's okay to do dopplegangers of me and someone they bullied out of fandom. I've submitted abuse report to the staff and the mods but I'm seeing if there is any legal action I can take on these people.

By anon266669 — On May 07, 2012

@jeancastle00: Strengthen these crazy laws?

That's plain silly. If you have a problem, change your email, phone. Block their email or phone number. Simple.

Involving the legal system is not the way to solve things!

By anon266667 — On May 07, 2012

These "cyber stalking" laws are way too broad!

The Courts are crazy and have no common sense when they get involved.

I was arrested in Maryland for stalking my ex-fiance who moved to Colorado last August (2011). We were together for three years.

She cheated on me in 2009, we broke up, got back together and moved into a house together. However, life was stressful, due to her financial problems and medical issues with her son of 14. Her house went into foreclosure, and she had to move out. We were not getting along. Her only real option was to move back to Colorado, where she grew up and had family.

The week before she was to move, I found out that she had been talking to an old high school boyfriend, who flew out to Maryland after not seeing her in years, to help her move back. I found out she had been communicating with him for months, even when we were still together.

I texted/emailed/phoned her as she was moving back to Colorado, telling her I now knew what she was doing and how long she had been lying behind my back. I texted the boyfriend, letting him know what she had done, and what she did back in 2009. No threats, just telling her/him point blank what I thought of them. Well, she walked into a police station in Colorado and filed a complaint. I was arrested in Maryland, sat over two weeks in jail without bail and awaited extradition to Colorado. When I got to Colorado, I sat in jail for another month. My bail was set at $50,000 by the District! I got it reduced at a bail hearing to $20k and bailed out.

I got two felony charges: 1. Stalking, credible threat. 2. Stalking, emotional distress. I had a jury trial and spent over $10k on a bad defense attorney and plane flights. I was found guilty by the jury. They allowed all our nasty emails/texts from 2009 into the trial, even though she moved in with me for the next year after that! I totally rebuilt her kitchen in her house. I fixed up her house so she could have a chance to sell or rent it. I spent thousands of dollars and hundreds of hours helping her and her son who has Cystic Hygroma. I was totally used and then made into the bad guy for calling her out.

While in jail, I was evicted and lost everything. I was previously married for 24 years, and never any domestic violence in my past. I have a BS in Physics and Secret Clearance.

Now I will never work again in my field. I'm 61 and I have no income, no home, no assets. I survive off the kindness of a few friends. I'm destroyed. She just didn't want me telling the new boyfriend or her parents about what she had done.

My suggestion: Never text/email/phone your mate if you can avoid it. At the first sign that she/he lacks loyalty or character, leave them. If they ever call the cops on you, run from them and change your contact info.

I get sentenced in June 2012. These laws and the court system do more harm to the accused than any good to most of those who plot to use the laws against you. They are unconstitutional as they claim jurisdiction over anyone, anywhere. The Sixth Amendment says venue should be where the defendant resides or the crime was committed, and not for the convenience of the prosecution.

If arrested in another state, don't let them extradite you!

By flipside — On May 02, 2012

Well, I have a story from the other side of the equation, where these all-encompassing vague texting laws have literally destroyed my first year of medical school, and the best part is, I may not be found guilty, yet the trial has taken seven months so far.

Did you all realize that it is harassment to send someone non-threatening text messages repeatedly without response, even if it's a boyfriend, and even if it's an ordinary happening in your relationship? After he says to leave him alone, that's it. That's all it takes and any texts thereafter are considered enough to file criminal charges. And so, he did. He filed charges and I was arrested and held in jail. In my situation, I found out that this guy was lying to me for months and sleeping around (yes, I know typical, right?) Well, when I let him know that I discovered that this girl who was supposedly his crazy stalker, the girl he begged me to tell off (and I wouldn't), was actually the girl he was bating to sleep with (she was a virgin).

I asked him to speak with me in private, I texted him, and his response was not typical. Instead, he said "yeah so, I lied all along, now leave me alone." Most people show some sort of remorse or acknowledgement but no, he was more concerned with me spreading the truth and ruining his squeaky clean reputation at the medical school. Turns out he had a coach in all of this -- his father -- who, ironically, also had a sexual harassment case against him in medical school. It was revealed in the text messages that were taken with the police report that his father carefully instructed him, however the stupid police software didn't uncover all of the texts so there are gaps in the conversation that can't be uncovered. Still, it is not against the law for his dad to instruct him. And this creep has a history with multiple cases at his undergrad, but since he attacked me first, all of that is irrelevant.

I have had a laundry list of service awards and achievements, not a dent in my criminal record, and despite having tried to interview multiple classmates, not a single negative thing could be said about me, yet I am still a criminal. I'm 5'0 tall 110 pounds, and this guy was a college football player, but he's claiming to feel threatened by me with absolutely no legitimate claims, yet he's so charming that everyone is buying into him.

It comes down to the stupid black or white law: did I text him after he told me not to? Yes. The end. Guilty of a first degree misdemeanor. I'm ready to take this one to the papers. What a waste of hard earned tax dollars! I'm not advocating a total dismissal of policy, but the text should at least have to be threatening!

If the phones have the ability to block the number, there should be some rule about using that first to prevent people from intentionally baiting others for one reason or another. That or the texting harassment should be a misdemeanor until there is more education about the law.

By anon262212 — On Apr 19, 2012

@ronburg44: You obviously haven't ever been a bully victim or seen the news or heard stories, researched statistics, or the lifetime of emotional distress bullying whether it is at school or online.

Some laws are needed to protect us and then we have others that are ridiculous (such as the text harassment law - way too vague) but I'm not going to insult you. But I am going to tell you flat out that you are wrong. My daughter was being bullied at school and it got so bad she was afraid to go one morning and cried so finally, after months of trying to talk to the principal, I sent a furious email and got them to do something. Still, she is going to a private school next year where the kids are not pure evil and she will receive a proper education. Bullying is anything but harmless. And standing up to a bully is what a bully wants because it is their game. They want to fight.

By anon253888 — On Mar 11, 2012

Somehow a site (I think it's called "sharkhunters" or some such) got my name and email address. Apparently, they harvest the names off of a member's emails. For example, someone lists about 20 "friends" on copy and they enroll every one of them. All of a sudden I'm getting their email which is pro World War II, and nazi Germany, among other things.

I tried to unsubscribe and they sent back an insulting note about not being good enough for the site, etc. I responded (a mistake) explaining that I had not signed on and just wanted off. This went back and forth until finally, they blurted out that when I sign or submit an answer to them I should have known that they would just re-register me every time. Then I respond and then they put me back on with really insulting messages.

I'm a bit ticked off at them so I'm reporting them. They apparently think it's cute to goad you into responding and then back you go onto their site with three or four stupid emails each day. It's mostly selling Cd's of interviews with nazis, etc. --G.R.D.

By anon205805 — On Aug 13, 2011

where can I file a complaint? My harasser is from the U.S. and I am from a third-world country.

By anon124992 — On Nov 08, 2010

Internet harassment must be taken seriously. i say this because my 14 year old daughter is going though this as we speak. This situation started at school, but now it has led to the internet.

i believe there should be stronger laws. In this world today, we need to stop situations like this. Teens today have it a lot worse than we were growing up. I also think parents should be more involved and watch what their child is doing on the computer, because someday their child my be the one who is being bullied. --vic66

By anon124106 — On Nov 04, 2010

ronburg44: I understand where you are coming from, but in this day and age where anyone can be arrested or sued for defending themselves, these laws are necessary. It is unfortunate that we need to keep coming up with new laws for what seems to be menial issues. But, if you look at how screwed up people are today, I can't help but wonder why these laws were not in effect many many years ago.

By ronburg44 — On Oct 20, 2010

I personally think the Internet bullying and harassment is not that big of a deal. People who are susceptible to bullying are going to be susceptible to weather on the Internet or at school. Simply put, these people are we a need to learn how to be strong and stand up to other individuals that are harassing them. We don't need to enact more laws to deal with common social problems such as this. We as society simply need to recognize when people are having to heart of an issue with another person's income to that person's side.

Adding more laws to our ordering complicated ecosystem and tighten up more of our courts with complicated harassment suits that are hard for judges to decide and difficult for juries to comprehend just means more bureaucracy and more inefficiency in our nation's justice system.

By jeancastle00 — On Oct 20, 2010

Internet harassment has simply gotten out of hand today in this age. What used to be some harmless commenting on bulletin boards has now become full-fledged bullying on social networking sites. The epidemic of suicides is now resulted from this intimidation have both school and now infiltrating the personalized home of individuals and students has become a massive problem the way we deal with Internet harassment.

These problems are not to go away without intervention and we need to strengthen our Internet draft laws to ensure that people are saved from bullying. There needs to be strong laws on the books that prosecutors are able to bring justice to the victims of harassment. Just because something is on the Internet doesn't mean that it's not real as a lot of times the bullying spreads from one to the other.

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