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(p. 244) Acceptance, Activism, and Freedom from Bullying: The Online Context 

(p. 244) Acceptance, Activism, and Freedom from Bullying: The Online Context
Chapter:
(p. 244) Acceptance, Activism, and Freedom from Bullying: The Online Context
Author(s):

Ann Frisén

, Kristina Holmqvist Gattario

, and Sofia Berne

DOI:
10.1093/med-psych/9780190841874.003.0024
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date: 22 October 2020

The Internet and especially social networking sites provide potent contexts for the formation of individuals’ views of their bodies and appearance. So far, however, research has almost exclusively focused on the negative aspects of these experiences. This chapter proposes that the online context can also be an influential context for positive body-related experiences. In order to make the online context a more positive arena, appearance-related cyberbullying needs to be stopped. Therefore, this chapter starts with a review of appearance-related cyberbullying and elaborates on what can be done about this growing problem. The second part concerns the positive aspects of body image–defining experiences online, such as body acceptance and body activism movements, which may promote positive body image and embodiment. How the online context may constitute an arena for exploration of alternative ideals, resistant communications, and body activism is discussed.

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