Education Policy | Post Primary | Preschool | Primary | Tertiary | Search


New app gives teens the tools to combat cyberbullying

Teen-led charity Sticks ‘n Stones has this month launched a free web app to help young people dealing with online negativity and harm.

The web app – ICON (In Case of Online Negativity) – has been conceived, co-designed and tested by Sticks ‘n Stones’ members across New Zealand, with support from an interactive designer and developer.

“ICON has been created with the belief that young people can make good decisions for themselves, provided they have good information to start with,” ICON project manager, Keryn Tubbs, says. “It offers comprehensive solutions, guides you in your decision and empowers you with the right information you need to take action.”

Sticks ‘n Stones CEO, Karla Sanders, says the average teen spends at least two hours online every day. Most of the time their experiences are positive, however when it’s not going well, things can go downhill fast and teenagers often don’t seek help. A 2015 Sticks ‘n Stones’ survey of almost 1500 young people aged 12-18 found that 48 percent of those who had been bullied in the previous six months had told no one and not reached out to anyone for support. Bullying is linked to long lasting negative outcomes including loss of confidence and self-esteem, poor mental health and drug or alcohol misuse or abuse. One in four girls (24%) and nearly one in seven boys (14%) have been asked to share a nude or nearly nude image in the last 12 months, Netsafe research in 2017 showed.

“We created ICON to help young people help themselves early on, before things go really wrong,” Karla says. “It’s a positive, non-judgmental, easy and intuitive option that will help them make decisions, move forward and get on with their lives.”

Available through any web browser at; ICON is a clear, easy to use web app to help teens explore options and troubleshoot online negativity – from nudes and cyberbullying to hate and abuse. It includes more than 25 real life audio stories from young Kiwis about their experiences with online negativity. These are in their own words and show the range of issues being faced by teens today. The app covers everything from the most practical solutions right through to information about your rights and the law related to the situation, and the services that could help. Watch the video for how to use ICON.

© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


Book cover: New Zealand's Backyard BeastsScoop Review Of Books: Bug Report

You might be forgiven for being a little uncertain about what this non-fiction work is all about based just on its title, but the cover illustration steers you straight, and the content inside leaves you in no doubt about the purpose of this lovely book More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Best Music Tracks Of 2018

Oliver Godji, who records as Octavian, is a French/British/Angolan rapper based in London. As someone born in Lille, France, he didn’t qualify for welfare in Britain... More>>

Programme Launch: Pussy Riot Leads The Auckland Fringe

The full programme for Auckland Fringe arts festival 2019 has landed with a giant international announcement for the blockbuster programme which features Russian protest art collective Pussy Riot. They are set to make their New Zealand debut, coming to Auckland for one night only. More>>

Howard Davis: Three Reasons for Film Fans to Get Netflix

The past two months have finally seen Netflix come into its own, providing the financing for three films that will warm the hearts of cinephiles everywhere - Orson Welles' The Other Side of The Wind, The Coen Brothers' The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, and Alfonso Cuarón's Roma. More>>

Scoop Review Of Books: The Rift by Rachael Craw

Rachael Craw's first series, Spark has been extremely well received by the YA community in both Australia and New Zealand (it has a hashtag, #SparkArmy), and The Rift looks like it’s going to be just as popular. More>>



  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland