Illinois: According to reports, nearly 43 percent of kids today have experienced online harassment and cyberbullying.
In 2013, Trisha Prabhu, an Indian-origin girl heard about young girl’s suicide due to bullying on the Internet and set out to find a long-term solution to cyber-bullying.
Now 15-year-old Trisha, an Illinois middle schooler, has created a project that could actually stop cyberbullying.
Prabhu is the inventor of ReThink, a software program that recognizes when users enter phrases often used to cyberbully into a computer and displays a pop-up window asking the writer to reconsider.
Her own studies find that a simple prompt (“Are you sure you want to send that message?”) is enough to discourage its teen users from sending nasty missives a whopping 93 percent of the time.
“I hypothesized that if adolescents (ages 12-18) were provided an alert mechanism that suggested them to re-think their decision if they expressed willingness to post a mean/hurtful message on social media, the number of mean/hurtful messages that adolescents will be willing to post would be lesser than adolescents that are not provided with such an alert mechanism,” wrote Prabhu when submitting her Google science fair application.