Effects of victimization experience, gender, and empathic distress on bystanders’ intervening behavior in cyberbullying

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

2 Scopus Citations
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Original languageEnglish
Number of pages10
Journal / PublicationThe Social Science Journal
Online published12 Jan 2021
Publication statusOnline published - 12 Jan 2021


Cyberbullying often occurs in the presence of bystanders, and these individuals play an influential role in easing negative outcomes of cyberbullying by engaging in intervening behavior. This study identifies and examines adult bystanders’ personal victimization experiences with cyberbullying as well as gender and empathic distress as key predictors of their intervening behavior. Findings from a nationally representative survey (N = 2,888) revealed that bystanders with cybervictimization experiences were more likely to engage in helping behavior when witnessing cyberbullying than those without. There were also gender differences in reactive behaviors of bystanders; women were more willing to intervene while men tended to remain passive. Furthermore, empathic distress evoked by witnessing cyberbullying was positively related to bystander intervention.

Research Area(s)

  • Cyberbullying, bystander, intervention, gender, empathic distress, victimization