'It's an ordinary matter': perceptions of cyberbullying in Thai youth culture

Nattharat Samoh, Pimpawun Boonmongkon, Timo T. Ojanen, Ronnapoom Samakkeekarom, Kai J. Jonas, Thomas E. Guadamuz*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


This qualitative study focuses on youth perceptions of cyberbullying (definition, causes, consequences, and management). We also articulate how perceptions of cyberbullying among Thai youth are influenced by Thai culture, including Thai youth culture. Data were collected from 15 to 24 year-olds in Central Thailand through 22 focus group discussions (FGDs) with 4-6 participants each, as well as 26 in-depth interviews (IDIs), totaling 136 participants. These youth defined cyberbullying as harming others through mobile phones and the Internet. To count as cyberbullying, actions had to cause real harm or annoyance and be committed with malicious intent. The relationship between the parties involved also mattered: close friends were unlikely to be considered cyberbullies. Participants thought that the anonymity of cyberspace is a key cause of cyberbullying but also that cyberbullying often results from previous offline incidents of violence. In their view, cyberbullying impacts individuals and their social interactions. Participants tended to manage the problem by themselves and not consult their parents. Alarmingly, participants viewed cyberbullying as 'an ordinary matter'. To raise awareness that cyberbullying is a societal problem with serious consequences, state agencies and educational institutions need to play active roles in preventing it and responding to it constructively when it occurs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)240-255
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Youth Studies
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • Cyberbullying
  • perception
  • youth violence
  • Thailand
  • AGE


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