Textual Harassment as a Form of Bullying, Drama, and Obsessive Relational Intrusion

Authored by: Erin M. Sumner , Nicholas Brody , Artemio Ramirez

The Routledge Handbook of Communication and Bullying

Print publication date:  August  2018
Online publication date:  September  2018

Print ISBN: 9781138552357
eBook ISBN: 9781315148113
Adobe ISBN:


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This chapter explores how text messaging (TM) is employed to enact various forms of interpersonal harassment. Although text-based harassment has been studied, distinct patterns of harassment—often lacking the defining characteristics of bullying—are commonly grouped together under the label of cyberbullying. Drawing upon narrative accounts provided by focus group participants, this chapter illustrates that TM harassment reflects a range of antisocial behaviors, such as cyberbullying, drama, and obsessive relational intrusion. The findings highlight the relational contexts, perceived harasser motives, events, and consequences involved in TM harassment. The findings also indicate drama and ORI are unique from cyberbullying, and some acts of TM harassment are better captured outside of the cyberbullying label.

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