Cyber-Bullying, Cyber-Stalking, & Cyber-Harassment Colorado Laws

03 Sep 2015 17:32 #1 by MyMountainTown
In addition to our Terms of Service , we feel it is imperative to make you aware of recent Colorado legislation that pertains directly to your online communications. Please be informed of the regulations below so as to keep the content of your online posts from getting you into legal trouble and be aware of how you are protected from others should you feel that you are receiving harassment from others.

As we've said before, liability is on the individual member who posts. You alone are legally responsible for the content that you post; please be smart, safe, and respectful of your fellow members and community neighbors. If you are experiencing harassment, it is imperative that you document the alleged abuse and reach out to local law enforcement for assistance. This forum exists to provide everyone a voice, but we will not condone or allow continued abuse of that voice in harassment of others. If you have any questions, please feel free to Direct Message us anytime and we will do our best to answer and/or to help. If you see any posts on My Mountain Town that you feel require review for violations of our Terms of Service or that need to be addressed, please click the "Report to Moderator" yellow button at the bottom right-hand corner of said post and that will flag it for us to review.

Our goal is to provide a site that is fun, informative, open, and welcoming to all. Please help us continue to make this the Best Local Website around by treating others as you would wish to be best be treated. Thank you!

State Cyberstalking and Cyberharassment Laws
Jan. 12, 2015

States have enacted "cyberstalking" or "cyberharassment" laws or have laws that explicitly include electronic forms of communication within more traditional stalking or harassment laws. This chart identifies state laws that include specific references to electronic communication. However, other state laws may still apply to those who harass, threaten or bully others online, although specific language may make the laws easier to enforce. This chart classifies the various state laws addressing these types of online behaviors, as described below.

Overview
Cyberstalking. Cyberstalking is the use of the Internet, email or other electronic communications to stalk, and generally refers to a pattern of threatening or malicious behaviors. Cyberstalking may be considered the most dangerous of the three types of Internet harassment, based on a posing credible threat of harm. Sanctions range from misdemeanors to felonies.

Cyberharassment. Cyberharassment differs from cyberstalking in that it may generally be defined as not involving a credible threat. Cyberharassment usually pertains to threatening or harassing email messages, instant messages, or to blog entries or websites dedicated solely to tormenting an individual. Some states approach cyberharrassment by including language addressing electronic communications in general harassment statutes, while others have created stand-alone cyberharassment statutes.

Colorado
Cyberstalking: Colo. Rev. Stat. §§ 18-602, 18-9-111
Cyberharassment: Colo. Rev. Stat. § 18-9-111



cyberbullying.us/Bullying-and-Cyberbullying-Laws.pdf

Colo. Rev. Stat. § 18-9-111: Harassment–stalking

(1) A person commits harassment if, with intent to harass, annoy, or alarm another person, he or she:

  • (a) Strikes, shoves, kicks, or otherwise touches a person or subjects him to physical contact; or
  • (b) In a public place directs obscene language or makes an obscene gesture to or at another person; or
  • (c) Follows a person in or about a public place; or
  • (d) Repealed by Laws 1990, H.B.90-1118, § 11.
  • (e) Initiates communication with a person, anonymously or otherwise, by telephone, telephone network, data network, text message, instant message, computer, computer network, or computer system in a manner intended to harass or threaten bodily injury or property damage, or makes any comment, request, suggestion, or proposal by telephone, computer, computer network, or computer system that is obscene; or
  • (f) Makes a telephone call or causes a telephone to ring repeatedly, whether or not a
  • conversation ensues, with no purpose of legitimate conversation; or
  • (g) Makes repeated communications at inconvenient hours that invade the privacy of another and interfere in the use and enjoyment of another's home or private residence or other private property; or
  • (h) Repeatedly insults, taunts, challenges, or makes communications in offensively coarse
  • language to, another in a manner likely to provoke a violent or disorderly response.
(1.5) As used in this section, unless the context otherwise requires, “obscene” means a patently offensive description of ultimate sexual acts or solicitation to commit ultimate sexual acts, whether or not said ultimate sexual acts are normal or perverted, actual or simulated, including masturbation, cunnilingus, fellatio, anilingus, or excretory functions.

(2) Harassment pursuant to subsection (1) of this section is a class 3 misdemeanor; except that harassment is a class 1 misdemeanor if the offender commits harassment pursuant to subsection (1) of this section with the intent to intimidate or harass another person because of that person's actual or perceived race, color, religion, ancestry, or national origin.

(3) Any act prohibited by paragraph (e) of subsection (1) of this section may be deemed to have occurred or to have been committed at the place at which the telephone call, electronic mail, or other electronic communication was either made or received.


How a cyberbullying law in Colorado was tweaked to be more effective
Backers of revision to statute hope fines, jail time will deter cyberbullying
By Kevin Simpson, The Denver Post
Posted: 07/14/2015

In the often inhospitable realm of cyberspace, there's a new sheriff in town — in the form of a revised Colorado's harassment statute that backers hope will keep the most vicious electronic communications from inflicting tragic damage.

Those changes now expose "cyberbullies" to a misdemeanor charge that carries a possible fine of up to $750 and up to six months in jail.

...two important distinctions of the new law: The cyberbullying has to rise to criminal intent to alarm, annoy or harass; and it can be either direct or indirect. In other words, an online posting need not be sent directly to an individual victim to fall under the statute.

"Research shows that cyberbullying tends to be more vicious because of the anonymity of it, and as a result of that viciousness, we often see tragic consequences," said Kevin Paletta, Lakewood police chief and chairman of the subcommittee.


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30 Apr 2020 14:57 #2 by Pony Soldier
In light of this, is it appropriate to have users' private email addresses displayed for anyone to see?

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30 Apr 2020 15:00 #3 by MyMountainTown
We have not turned on any public options of displaying email addresses on MyMountainTown.com. If you have an example of where it is being displayed on the site, please email us a screen shot so we can pass it along to our web developer.

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30 Apr 2020 15:08 #4 by homeagain
GOOD question....it would seem to be inappropriate.

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30 Apr 2020 15:24 #5 by Pony Soldier
email sent. I consider this a blatant violation of trust to share user's personal information.

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30 Apr 2020 16:12 #6 by MyMountainTown
Our apologies, the setting in the back end is, and has been, set to NO, but there is something else in the software over-riding that command. We've sent your message along to our web developer asking for this to be addressed urgently.

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30 Apr 2020 17:00 #7 by MyMountainTown
While our web developer is figuring out how to solve the problem, you can go to your Profile Pages and change the privacy so other members cannot contact you via Private Message or Email and it should remove the email icon from your profile display on the forums.

Hover over the Community option in the menu at the top, then select My Profile Under Member Resources


Click Update Your Profile at the top of the page


Go to the Statistic Tab and change the settings from Public to Private. Click Update.


Go the the Contact Info tab and change the settings from Public to Private. Click Update.


Your profile on the forums should only show the number of posts you've made, Thank Yous you've received, your birthday (if you've entered it, which we do not recommend - it's hard-coded into the software we purchase and we are unable to remove it ourselves), and location (if you entered it).

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The following user(s) said Thank You: Pony Soldier

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01 May 2020 10:10 #8 by Pony Soldier
Thanks for fixing the issue.  I understand it was just a glitch and quickly fixed once pointed out.  I did want to mention that quick reply is unusable on Firefox at least.  No scroll bar appears so you can't access controls.  The regular Reply works fine though so not a big deal.  I did lock down my account, but maybe too far.  I apparently can't receive PM's now.  Any idea what I can uncheck just to be able to receive those?

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01 May 2020 12:00 #9 by MyMountainTown
You're welcome, we appreciate the heads up on the problem as we consider our members' privacy, and site security, extremely important. It appears that the issue has been fixed, and we are looking through to make sure there aren't any other issues. We've sent along the report on the Quick Reply not working as well as the lack of bbcode/wysiwyg editor, and Preview option missing.

Unfortunately, there is not a way to receive PMs only, and not emails, if you set your account to Private; it's all or nothing. As far as we know, that's hard-coded into the software and beyond our ability to change.

You can block individual users from contacting you via PM or email if you wish to leave, or re-open, your member account to Public. Simply go to that users' Profile Page you wish to block by clicking on their username on the Forums, then select 'Block User" at the top of the page.

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