From School Library Journal
Grade 7 Up—Among books recently published on this topic, this one distinguishes itself by covering more than 50 actual court cases involving teenagers. A note on the back states that the offensive language is quoted from court transcripts and should be taken in context. Although Judge Jacobs assures teenagers of their protected legal rights, especially First Amendment rights, the hearings are a sobering reminder of the real dangers and legal consequences of cyberbullying. He admits that laws differ from state to state and judges in one court will hand down different decisions from those in another. Cyberbullies are warned to expect the unexpected. Some of the cases were still pending at the time of publication. Although the text is explicitly addressed to teenagers, it would be helpful to school administrators who could refer to the court cases when dealing with cyberspace misuse and School Authorized Use Policies (AUPs). Crime/Justice and Participation in Government courses could use the questions and prompts posed at the end of each chapter for class discussion. Although further resources and Web sites are extensive, some legal journals would not be readily available to high school students. The layout includes sidebars, photos, and graphics. Promoting the values of civility and ethical behavior makes this book an even more timely and valuable purchase.—Peggy Fleming, Churchville-Chili High School, Churchville, NY
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Like Toney Allman’s Mean Behind the Screen (2009), this title deals with the hot, contemporary topic of online teen harassment, by both teens and by adults. The author, a former judge, focuses on recent landmark court cases, many of them still pending, and in an informal, interactive style, each chapter discusses one case in detail, bringing together the rights of the victim as well as those of the perpetrator. He then moves from the particulars to the general issues and asks readers, “What would you decide in this case?” Whether the case is about using a cell phone to send nude photos of a friend, a personal attack on a teacher, or posting a fake profile online, Jacobs encourages readers to consider the viewpoints of victim, perpetrator, and bystander (“Have you ever sent a bullying personal message, all over your school?”). Each chapter includes a bibliography of articles and Web sites and interactive questions sure to spark more discussion. “Think before you click!” sums up the cautionary advice. Grades 7-12. --Hazel Rochman