Can clans protect adolescent players of massively multiplayer online games from violent behaviors?

Ybarra ML, boyd d. Can clans protect adolescent players of massively multiplayer online games from violent behavior? Int J Public Health. 2015;60(2):267-76. doi: 10.1007/s00038-014-0637-8. Abstract: OBJECTIVES: To examine whether clan membership mediates observed associations between violent game content and externalizing behaviors among youth who play massively multiplayer online games (MMOGs). METHODS: Responses from 486 11- to 18-year-olds who: live in the United States, read English, have been online at least once in the past 6 months, and have played MMOGs in the past year were examined. Generalized estimating equations were used to estimate the population-averaged incident rate ratio of aggressive, delinquent, and seriously violent behaviors among MMOG players given one’s … [Read more...]

Serious games for sexual health

Brown, K., Bull, S., Christensen, J.L., Hieftje,K., Jozowski, K.N., Ybarra, M.L. Serious games for sexual health. Games Health J. 2015;4(2):69-77. doi: 10.1089/g4h.2014.0139. Abstract: Program developers and researchers in the sexual health domain have increasingly embraced technological trends as they emerge. With the emergence of serious game applications to impact health behaviors, a natural step for research enquiry will be the investigation of serious games for sexual health education. We invited a panel of sexual health researchers who are working at the intersection of sexual health behavior change and technology applications to comment on the place of serious games in furthering the field of sexual health. The panel grappled with six questions. PubMed ID: 26181800 View full … [Read more...]

What features make online harassment incidents upsetting to youth?

Mitchell KJ, Ybarra ML, Jones LM, & Espelage D. What features make online harassment incidents upsetting to youth? J Sch Violence. Published online ahead of print January 6, 2015. doi: 10.1080/15388220.2014.990462 Abstract: This article examines characteristics of online harassment episodes associated with increased distress for youth. Data were collected as part of the Third Youth Internet Safety Survey, a cross-sectional telephone survey conducted in the United States in 2010. Interviews were conducted with 1,560 Internet-using youth, ages 10 through 17. Harassment incidents involving multiple perpetrators, offline contact, and a power imbalance between victim and perpetrator were more likely to be upsetting to youth. As the number of aggravating features (i.e., multiple … [Read more...]

Online focus groups as an HIV prevention program for gay, bisexual, and queer adolescent males

Ybarra ML, DuBois LZ, Parsons JT, Prescott TL, Mustanski B. Online focus groups as an HIV prevention program for gay, bisexual, and queer adolescent males. AIDS Educ Prev. 2014;26(6): 554-564. doi: 10.1521/aeap.2014.26.6.554 Abstract: Seventy-five 14–18-year-old gay, bisexual, and queer (GBQ) males provided feedback about how their participation in national, online focus groups (FG) about GBQ sexual health related topics resulted in behavioral and attitudinal changes. Most sexually experienced youth agreed that their participation positively changed their views and behavioral intentions. Some said that being in the FG made them more comfortable talking about sex, their sexuality, and making safer choices such as negotiating condoms. Others indicated intentions to become more involved … [Read more...]

Understanding linkages between bullying and suicidal ideation in a national sample of LGB and heterosexual youth in the United States

Ybarra ML, Mitchell KJ, Kosciw JG, Korchmaros JD. Understanding linkages between bullying and suicidal ideation in a national sample of LGB and heterosexual youth in the United States. Prev Sci. 2015;16(3):451-62. doi: 10.1007/s11121-014-0510-2 Abstract: While there is an extant research base regarding suicidal ideation in relation to bullying and peer harassment, how findings may be similar and different for lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) and non-LGB youth is less well understood. To address this gap, we analyzed data from 5,542 13- to 18-year-old youth who were nationally surveyed online in the United States in 2010. Results suggest that the relative odds of suicidal ideation are elevated for youth who are victims of bullying (OR = 5.61, 95 % CI, 4.11, 7.64), as well as those who … [Read more...]

Exposure to websites that encourage self-harm and suicide: Prevalence rates and association with actual thoughts of self-harm and thoughts of suicide in the United States

Mitchell KJ, Wells M, Priebe G, Ybarra ML. Exposure to websites that encourage self-harm and suicide:Prevalence rates and association with actual thoughts of self-harm and thoughts of suicide in the United States. J Adolesc. 2014;37(8):1335-1344. doi: 10.1016/j.adolescence.2014.09.011 This article provides 12-month prevalence rates of youth exposure to websites which encourage self-harm or suicide and examines whether such exposure is related to thoughts of self-harm and thoughts of suicide in the past 30 days. Data were collected via telephone from a nationally representative survey of 1560 Internet-using youth, ages 10-17 residing in the United States. One percent (95% CI: 0.5%, 1.5%) of youth reported visiting a website that encouraged self-harm or suicide. Youth who visited such … [Read more...]

“Sexting” and its relation to sexual activity and sexual risk behavior in a national survey of adolescents

Ybarra ML, Mitchell KJ. "Sexting" and its relation to sexual activity and sexual risk behavior in a national survey of adolescents. J Adolesc Health. 2014;55(6):757-764. doi: 10.1016/j.jadohealth.2014.07.012 Abstract: PURPOSE: To examine the relation between “sexting” (sending and sharing sexual photos online, via text messaging, and in person) with sexual risk behaviors and psychosocial challenge in adolescence. METHODS: Data were collected online between 2010 and 2011 with 3,715 randomly selected 13- to 18-year-old youth across the United States. RESULTS: Seven percent of youth reported sending or showing someone sexual pictures of themselves, in which they were nude or nearly nude, online, via text messaging, or in person, during the past year. Although females and older youth … [Read more...]

Online social support as a buffer against online and offline peer and sexual victimization among U.S. LGBT and non-LGBT youth

Ybarra ML, Mitchell KJ, Palmer NA, Reisner SL. Online social support as a buffer against online and offline peer and sexual victimization among U.S. LGBT and non-LGBT youth. Child Abuse Negl. 2015;39:123-136. doi: 10.1016/j.chiabu.2014.08.006 Abstract: In today's technology-infused world, we need to better understand relationships youth form with friends online, how they compare to relationships formed in-person, and whether these online relationships confer protective benefits. This is particularly important from the perspective of peer victimization, given that social support in-person appears to reduce the odds of victimization in-person. To address this literature gap, data from a sample of 5,542 U.S. adolescents, collected online between August 2010 and January 2011, were … [Read more...]

Process evaluation of a mHealth program: Lessons learned from Stop My Smoking USA, a text messaging-based smoking cessation program for young adults

Ybarra ML, Holtrop JS, Prescott TL, & Strong D. Process evaluation of a mHealth program: Lessons learned from Stop My Smoking USA, a text messaging-based smoking cessation program for young adults. Patient Educ Couns. 2014;97(2):239-243. doi: 10.1016/j.pec.2014.07.009 Abstract: Objective Report lessons learned in an RCT of Stop My Smoking (SMS) USA, a mHealth smoking cessation program for young adult smokers. Methods 164 18–24-year-olds were recruited nationally, online in 2011. Program evaluation data were provided at 12-week post-Quit Day. Results (1) Inviting participants to complete a brief text messaging survey and then asking them to complete a longer online survey resulted in the highest response rate (89%). (2) The positive tone of program messages was the most … [Read more...]

Opportunities for technology-based HIV prevention programming among high school students in Cape Town, South Africa

Ybarra ML, Mwaba B, Prescott TL, Roman NV, Rooi B, & Bull S. Opportunities for technology-based HIV prevention programming among high school students in Cape Town, South Africa. AIDS Care. 2014;26(12):1562-1567. doi: 10.1080/09540121.2014.936814 Abstract: One in three new cases of HIV in South Africa is among adolescents. Given that adolescents are particularly affected, scalable, and cost-effective prevention programs are urgently needed. This study aims to identify opportunities to integrate technology into youth HIV prevention efforts. In 2012, 1107 8th–11th graders completed a paper-and-pencil survey. Respondents were enrolled in one of three public high schools in Langa, a lower income community in Cape Town, South Africa. Eighty-nine percent of respondents have used text … [Read more...]