The Parent App: Understanding Families in the Digital Age

By Lynn Schofield Clark | Go to book overview
Save to active project

Cyberbullying Girls, Helicopter
Moms, and Internet Predators

TUCKED AWAY IN A pleasant enough middle-class suburb on a street named Waterford Crystal Drive, two mothers and their daughters in Dardenne Prairie, Missouri, unwittingly became the focus of the world’s first cyberbullying court case. Wired magazine named the case one of the greatest threats to privacy and online freedoms because it attempted to utilize the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act to convict forty-nine-year-old Lori Drew of violating the terms of service of MySpace by registering to communicate with others under a false identity.1 Lawyers and cyberspace pundits were especially interested in the ways in which this case has threatened to make it a felony to create and experiment with online identities. But the case has garnered far more attention—and vitriol—because of the toxic combination of teen nastiness, online social networking practices, and disturbingly inappropriate parental actions that lay at its core. It’s an unfortunate example of what can go terribly wrong, and the reach of the story demonstrates that many people have found in it a compelling, perhaps epic story both of the worst that can happen to teens online and of what it means to be a “bad” parent in the digital age.2 It also allows us to explore the various ways in which the parents of teens respond to troubling online behaviors.

It all started in 2006, when Lori Drew’s thirteen-year-old daughter Sarah complained to her mother that Megan Meier, a former friend, was bothering her. The two girls had had an on-again, off-again friendship; both had engaged in name-calling and spiteful actions. Sarah Drew wanted to learn what Megan was saying about her, so Sarah and Ashley Grills, an older teen who worked for Sarah’s mother, allegedly created a fake MySpace account. Sarah’s mother, Lori Drew, allegedly observed them. The young women gave the fake account the name and identity of a fictional sixteen-year-old boy and named him “Josh Evans.”


Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Cite this page

Cited page

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
The Parent App: Understanding Families in the Digital Age


Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 299

matching results for page

Cited passage

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?