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Frequency of Victimization Experiences and Well-Being Among Online, Offline, and Combined Victims on Social Online Network Sites of German Children and Adolescents



Frequency of Victimization Experiences and Well-Being Among Online, Offline, and Combined Victims on Social Online Network Sites of German Children and Adolescents



Frontiers in Public Health 3: 274



Victimization is associated with negative developmental outcomes in childhood and adolescence. However, previous studies have provided mixed results regarding the association between offline and online victimization and indicators of social, psychological, and somatic well-being. In this study, we investigated 1,890 German children and adolescents (grades 5-10, mean age = 13.9; SD = 2.1) with and without offline or online victimization experiences who participated in a social online network (SNS). Online questionnaires were used to assess previous victimization (offline, online, combined, and without), somatic and psychological symptoms, self-esteem, and social self-concept (social competence, resistance to peer influence, esteem by others). In total, 1,362 (72.1%) children and adolescents reported being a member of at least one SNS, and 377 students (28.8%) reported previous victimization. Most children and adolescents had offline victimization experiences (17.5%), whereas 2.7% reported online victimization, and 8.6% reported combined experiences. Girls reported more online and combined victimization, and boys reported more offline victimization. The type of victimization (offline, online, combined) was associated with increased reports of psychological and somatic symptoms, lower self-esteem and esteem by others, and lower resistance to peer influences. The effects were comparable for the groups with offline and online victimization. They were, however, increased in the combined group in comparison to victims with offline experiences alone.

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Accession: 057900430

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 26734598

DOI: 10.3389/fpubh.2015.00274


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