Abstract

To address the topic of children's online aggression, this article explores a subsample from the EU Kids Online dataset (2017-2019) of 1404 children, aged 9-16, who reported having engaged in aggressive acts online in the previous year. Through a cluster analysis, respondents were classified into three groups. Findings emphasize the risk factors for aggression and how they relate to age-specific developmental tasks. Boys predominate, but the gender gap is not as wide as in offline contexts. For almost half of the children, aggression goes hand in hand with victimization. All the clusters share high levels of emotional deprivation. A sense of lacking social support, from both adults and peers, becomes more relevant among those children with high and more problematic engagement in online aggression. Results confirm that online aggression must be considered within the complex and fluid offline-online continuum cutting across the social contexts in which children grow.
Original languageEnglish
Article number20210050
Pages (from-to)419–445
Number of pages27
JournalCommunications
Volume46
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2021

Keywords

  • Children's online aggression
  • Developmental tasks
  • Digital parenting
  • EU Kids Online
  • Victimization-aggression overlap

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