"Pew has a new survey out today about how kids treat each other online, with questions that really drill down into teenagers’ behavior. In many ways, the findings are reassuring. The numbers make clear that meanness and bullying aren’t the norm for teenagers on social network sites (which really means Facebook, since that’s where more than nine in 10 of them are). That’s important, because if a bad behavior isn’t the norm, you can sell kids on that: It’s not true that everyone is trashing people on Facebook, and that’s one more reason why you shouldn’t either.
Almost 70 percent of kids say their peers are mostly kind to each other online. When unkindness—bullying and meanness—takes place, it’s usually in combination with similar cruelty in person. In other words, social networking is not creating a new breed of mean kids. It’s mostly the secondary outlet for the bad stuff that’s already happening..."