Schools aren't stepping up in cyberbullying cases. So recently, a student in Acworth, Georgia, took matters into her own hands.
Alex Boston, a fourteen-year-old, decided to sue two of her classmates for creating a Facebook page in her name, while school officials did nothing, reports ABC News.
The story began when she was confronted by friends, who accused her of saying bad things about them on Facebook.
When Alex and her parents logged on, they discovered the fake Facebook page, which included a distorted photo of Alex, listing her spoken languages as “Retardish,” writes ABC. The Facebook posts included false sexual exploits, links to racist videos and implications that she used drugs.
Alex’s parents contacted Palmer Middle School to discuss the issue with school officials. The school said they couldn’t do anything since the cyberbullying took place off school property.
Alex then reported the page to Facebook. Nothing happened there and the page continued to stay up. According to CBS Atlant, the company finally took the page down about the time the lawsuit was filed.
When Alex decided to sue, numerous attorneys turned down her case. After all, why would anyone want to sue people with few assets? But for Alex, the lawsuit wasn’t about money. It was about making things right. Eventually, two lawyers took her case and sued the two students, as well as their parents.
Then the school refused to give Alex’s attorneys the addresses of the students. So, Alex’s attorneys served the students with the lawsuit at school.
The lawsuit alleges defamation and libel. Libel is a kind of defamation where false and injurious statements are made. The key difference between a libel and a slander lawsuit, however, is that the defamatory statements are written.
As everyone knows, statements made in cyberspace can last in perpetuity. So there’s no going back for the two students who made the comments on the fake Facebook page.
As for Alex Boston, her case might not give her a huge payday, but it may give other cyberbullying victims the strength to stand up for themselves and take action.