Education about Stopping Cyber-Bullies Must be Ramped Up. Sharon Kleyne & Neville L. Johnson Put Cyber-Bullies on Notice.
Attorney Neville L. Johnson, a founding partner of Johnson & Johnson in California, www.jjllplaw.com/attorneys/neville-l-johnson, recently shared with Sharon Kleyne and radio listeners this insight into his good character: “I still regret,” said Johnson, “that I didn’t come to the aid of a kid being bullied in the second or third grade; that still bothers me. We need more love and respect every day.” This is why Johnson devotes some of his time and energy as an attorney and citizen to serving with Public Justice, an organization of twelve lawyers that takes on cyber-bullying, most recently in Washington, D,C, and Oakland, California.
“We all have the right to a good reputation,” Johnson said. The author of the acclaimed biography of the greatest college basketball coach of all time, The John Wooden Pyramid of Success, Johnson believes that reality television shows like Survivor, social media like Facebook and the corporate practice of gathering everybody’s data are partially to blame for cyber-bullying. “We could also use a robust public debate on conflicts created by the First Amendment,” Johnson says. “It needs to be established that you can’t break the law to get news.”
Water advocate Sharon Kleyne, founder of Bio-Logic Aqua® Research Water Life Science®, has experienced cyber-bullying firsthand. Kleyne speculated that a deep need for attention drives those who wind up bullying others. Kleyne believes one Antidote might be courtesy. She suggested that everyone should be more polite and respectful in their homes. Kleyne also thinks that schools should offer a course on Manners and what’s positive about them. “Take China, for instance,” she said. “The Chinese believe in hugging and they are concerned for each other. Everybody has a place and even thought the culture is fiercely competitive, most are not cutthroat about it,”
Sharon Kleyne was interested to learn that, according to Johnson, perhaps the biggest issue facing our internet-driven lives is the Communications Decency Act. This Act makes exempt Google, Facebook, Yahoo and others exempt from lawsuits. “The biggest problem for employees in the U.S.,” Johnson warns, “is the law that says an employee can only sue an employer through arbitration.” Johnson explains that such a system is weighted in favor of the employer because it’s the business that hires the arbitrator. “A law has been introduced in Congress to change this situation,” Johnson says, “but so far Republicans have blocked it.”
If you are the victim of cyber-bullying or privacy piracy,” Kleyne and Johnson agree that your options are limited. If it’s something posted on line, you should ask the poster to take it down. If that doesn’t work, offer a rebuttal. Finally, you can threaten to sue. “It’s important to keep after it,” Johnson says. Johnson adds. “We need to be more mindful. Respect is what everybody deserves at all times. The most important thing,” Johnson concludes, “is to be a good person.”