The Anti-Social Network: Cyberstalking Victimization among College Students

The Anti-Social Network: Cyberstalking Victimization among College Students

The Anti-Social Network: Cyberstalking Victimization among College Students

The Anti-Social Network: Cyberstalking Victimization among College Students

Synopsis

Cyberstalking is a disturbing reality for many in the United States and across the world. Yet, little is known about the extent or nature of cyberstalking victimization. Reyns's intent is to estimate the extent of victimization, and by utilizing the lifestyle-routine activities perspective to identify risk factors for cyberstalking victimization among college students. Results indicate that certain online behaviors such as online social network usage, friending strangers online, engaging in online forms of deviance, and possessing a propensity toward low self-control increase one's likelihood of experiencing cyberstalking victimization.

Excerpt

Despite the fact that every crime has a victim, criminologists have focused almost exclusively on offenders for most of the discipline’s history. It was not until about halfway through the twentieth century that the first generation of victimologists began to devote research attention to victim-centered issues. The scientific study of victims can be traced back to the work of several scholars, including von Hentig (1948), Wolfgang (1958), Schafer (1968), Amir (1971), and Mendelsohn (1976), who each in their own way proposed that victims were responsible to some degree for their victimization. In time, the field of victimology expanded in scope to explain not only the victim’s role in their victimization, but other aspects of victimization as well (e.g., correlates, consequences) (see Doerner, 2010; Fisher & Reyns, 2009). Subsequent generations of victimologists have called attention to the importance of opportunity as a precursor to victimization (e.g., Cohen & Felson, 1979; Hindelang, Gottfredson, & Garofalo, 1978; Wilcox, Land, & Hunt, 2003). It is in the work of these scholars and those that followed them that the current study is grounded.

The advent of the National Crime Survey (NCS) in 1972 and other subsequent victim surveys (e.g., British Crime Survey, National Violence Against Women Survey, National Victimization Against College Women Surveys) greatly expanded the research capabilities of victimologists by providing much needed data for testing and refining theories. Since that time, victimologists have explored a variety of types of victimization, ranging from broad categories (i.e., personal, property) to particular types (e.g., rape, larceny, stalking), and considered the victimization experiences of a number of specific populations . . .

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