Why are kids mean online

Mitch Prinstein talk about how the world online now is really focused much more on how to gain status popularity, visibility, and attention.
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Why are kids mean online

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- The world online now is really focused much more on how to gain status popularity, visibility, and attention. And whether we like it or not, in humans, just like in other species, one of the best ways to get that kind of attention and popularity is to be aggressive. The more that you put someone else down, the more it makes you seem higher on that status hierarchy. So a lot of kids online now are exposed to this kind of aggressive display as a way of people trying to make themselves seem more popular and more dominant. I think this is a little bit dangerous because it sends the message to kids that it's okay to act aggressively and inappropriately, and it's okay if other people are rewarding you with status. I don't think any of us want to live in a society where people are being taught to engage in that kind of aggressive behavior online or offline.


Mitch Prinstein talk about how the world online now is really focused much more on how to gain status popularity, visibility, and attention.

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Mitch Prinstein, Ph.D

Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience

Mitch Prinstein, Ph.D. is a husband, a father, board certified in clinical child and adolescent psychology, and serves as the John Van Seters Distinguished Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience, and the Director of Clinical Psychology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.Mitch’s Peer Relations Lab has been conducting research on popularity and peer relations for almost 20 years, and has been funded by the National Institute of Mental Health, the National Institute of Child and Human Development, and several private foundations, resulting in over 100 scientific works, including a slew of scientific journal articles, book chapters, a set of encyclopedias on adolescent development, and even a textbook on the field of clinical psychology.Mitch is deeply committed to science and training in clinical psychology, having served as President of the Society for a Science of Clinical Psychology and the Society of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology, the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology, and on the boards of the American Psychological Association, the Council of University Directors of Clinical Psychology, and publication board of the Association of Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies.He and his research have been featured in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, National Public Radio, the Los Angeles Times, CNN, U.S. News & World Report, Time magazine, New York magazine, Newsweek, Reuters, Family Circle, Real Simple, and elsewhere.

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