I agree with the fact that they are not equal... but not for the reasons you say they are not equal. For every playground bully, there are maybe 100 online bullies. If you have EVER spent time on a online forum, you would know this. Oh, I know that slashdot is SIMILAR to a forum in how it is set up, but there are far fewer bullies and trolls here than compared to a place like Yahoo Answers, or any gaming forum. Yes, I'm sure you could respond with some clever remark about how I must not be aware of the bullies and trolls here... but that would just be ignorant on your part.
You say "if junior can't handle someone saying mean things about him online then he'll always be a momma's boy." so... you imply that people shouldn't allow words to hurt them, and in the same sentence you choose to use an offensive phrase to insult and offend people. That's no different than saying if a bully isn't stood up to, then the kid he is bullying deserved the beat-down. I mean, if the kid can't defend himself, he should learn how to fight... right? You do realize that it is far easier to physically lash out at an issue, then mentally process it properly... right? Not to pick on people with disabilities, or really small children, but we can use their experiences as an example. Looking at very small children... before they learn to speak properly, they learn to hit. Something scares them, angers them... they don't process it, they lash out. Look at retarded individuals or autistic individuals. Violence is often a reaction that must be dealt because that is a FAR easier way to deal with what they are feeling. So, it is harder for Junior to deal with someone saying mean things than it is for Junior to deal with someone hitting him. Junior would much rather have a black eye than have the stigma of being a "momma's boy" follow him throughout his school career. Again, if you don't realize that, you are lacking the knowledge of how things are... and by definition that is ignorant.
You aren't upset when I point out how ignorant you are about these things, are you? It doesn't bother you... does it?
Now, add to that the fact that there is a separation of the individual from the incident, that occurs when there is a case of cyber-bullying... and it is FAR easier for an every day common Joe who would NEVER be a bully in real life to become a bully online. In fact, there are quite a number of people who would actually be VICTIMS of real life bullying that take up cyber-bullying as a way to overcompensate. When people can't see your face, and you can't see theirs... it makes it FAR easier to say things that would sting and stick with someone. When you can post something for the WORLD to read, and then pass that around to all of someone's friends.. that has a lasting impact. Are you that ignorant of how actions on the internet are costing some people their jobs? Do you really think that what happens here on the internet (and gets cached by Google) doesn't have an impact?
"To pretend that the online variety are a special threat is ridiculous." WAKE UP! How many kids have committed suicide because of a playground bully? Now, how many kids have committed suicide because of an ONLINE bully? When you were in Jr. High school... if someone started passing around photographs of you having homosexual relations... or relations with a person 50 years your Sr... how would that have made you feel? What if there was NOTHING you could do from EVERYONE at the school seeing those photos? It doesn't matter if those photos were faked. Ok. Don't like photos? What if all of a sudden a notebook appeared, and it looked just like yours, and inside there were all these horrible things written about your friends, and your teachers... and that notebook got passed around and shown to everyone? What if it LOOKED like it was from you... I mean, it LOOKED like it was your handwriting, even to you? This is no different than a cyber bully setting up a fake facebook page (as has already been done) and making it look like their target is saying and doing all these nasty things.
You think it is a good thing that younger people are choosing to immerse themselves in Facebook? You think it is a good thing that younger people are teaching themselves not to obey the rules, and come to the conclusion that it is OK to break the rules because you won't get caught? You don't think they are learning that lesson by ignoring the age restrictions? You think it is a good idea that kids are spending more and more time on Facebook at school, rather than doing their work? Exactly how ignorant are you? There seems to be no limit to what you do not know.
... and I hope my words didn't upset you too much. You don't want to come across as a hypocrite now, do you?