Software to curb bullying via cellphones

By SiliconIndia   |   Tuesday, 29 December 2009, 10:58 Hrs   |    3 Comments
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Software to curb bullying via cellphones
Wellington: In order to help parents who are worried about their child becoming a victim of text bullying, an Irish firm has developed a software that will allow parents to block or give access to only certain numbers on the child's phone. The 'Bully Stop' software even has a Call Log feature that can also record details of calls made and received by a phone, and the content of text messages sent to and from the phone.

Tony Cullen, Chief Executive of Virtual Mobile Application Development, the firm which developed the software, feels that this software will help end bullying through cellphones. "Child predators try to communicate with children via text rather than social networking sites such as Bebo, as mobile phones are more shielded from the watchful eye of their parents," says Cullen.

The software allows parents to block a list of numbers on their child's phone, or it also helps in creating a list of numbers to which calls or texts can be sent or received. The software has been endorsed by the Trinity College Dublin University Anti-Bullying Centre, part of the European Safer Internet Programme.

Though this software seems to be a good solution to curb bullying on mobile phones, some experts are still skeptical on this. Martin Cocker, Executive Director of New Zealand cyber watchdog Netsafe, says it is a "long bow to draw" to claim the software will prevent bullying on mobile phones, as cyber-bullying often occurs when a friendship or relationship runs into rough weather. "To limit someone's cellphone usage to their friends to avoid cyber-bullying goes against how most cyber bullying plays out," quoted Cocker as saying. He added that there might be some safety gains in preventing strangers from contacting children on their mobiles.

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