Rutgers Had Just Started “Project Civility” Before Cyber Bullying Resulted In Student Suicide
Just before Tyler Clementi’s suicide, Rutgers University launched “Project Civility” “to create campus-wide culture of compassion, courtesy.” Meanwhile, the Star-Ledger writes how “technology magnifies the consequences of bad actions: Nothing is local when the Internet is your playground, as the horrific tragedy unfolding at Rutgers seems to attest.”
“The tools today are so much more powerful,” said Francis Jensen, a pediatric neurologist at Harvard and an expert on the adolescent brain. “Teenagers have never had this level of power. Pressing a button makes something private, global. It’s not the classroom anymore, it’s the world.”
I wonder if Dharun Ravi and Molly Wei had any idea of the potential consequence of their actions when they live-streamed Clementi’s private encounter online. And what should be the legal consequences?
Dharun Ravi and Molly Wei face charges of invasion of privacy by watching and taping another person’s sex act, without his permission. Ravi faces another 2 charges for invasion of privacy for his attempt on Sep 21 to view Clementi’s private time in their dorm room. The charges are related to cyber-voyeurism.
New Jersey laws state it is a fourth degree felony to invade privacy by secretly viewing another person. It is a third degree felony to distribute a material that invades the privacy of a person without permission. A third degree offence conviction carries a prison term of a maximum of 5 years.
Ravi and Wei, both 18 years old, surrendered themselves to police. Ravi posted $25,000 bail. Wei was released on her own recognizance.
In addition to the cyber aspect, is this another example of anti-gay bullying?Click here for reuse options!
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