Press Releases

13-Year-Old Seeks to Create Bullying Index

afa18bb8ec31436dd077_guest_column.jpg
Credits: Walter Pardo, Managing Partner
afa18bb8ec31436dd077_guest_column.jpg

FAIRFAX COUNTY, VA. - Viraj Puri, a 13-year-old student from Fairfax County, Virginia, wants to create the only known live Social Media ‘Heatmap’ scanning daily instances of social media activity related to bullying.  Still in a beta-phase (http://www.bullyvention.com/bullying-heatmap/), Puri is looking to partner with lead data scientists Dr. Xiaojin ‘Jerry’ Zhu of the University of Wisconsin and Kalev Leetaru, a fellow and adjunct faculty at Georgetown University.  He has also reached out to Twitter and Facebook to allow them access to their data.

“We know we can do this, it’s just a matter of gaining access to the data, which would cost hundreds of thousands of dollars without help from Twitter and Facebook,” says Puri.

“Every state that I have researched is making great strides with laws and rules regarding bullying and reporting. Using the ‘Heatmap’ I’m taking this to the next step to provide a ‘Bullying Index’ for entire communities so they see where bullying is an issue.  Our goal is not only to “predict” the likelihood of the next bullying occurrence but see where it’s happening geographically, which begs the question ‘Why it is more of an epidemic in some areas of the country over others?’   New homeowners look into at the quality of  schools, crime, jobs etc. when they are looking to move into a new area, parents should have an indicator as to how bullying is in each county, city and school district across the United States before they move into a new area. This will put more focus on quality of life and get lawmakers to address this very important issue,” says Puri.

Sign Up for E-News

“With every post and story that appears in the headlines, I want to compile where bullying is a problem whether they are on Twitter or Facebook and identify possible geographic pockets where bullying problems exist around the United States,” says Puri.

Through the heatmap (http://www.bullyvention.com/bullying-heatmap/) and recent contact with Washington DC lawmakers, Puri is in the process or reaching out to state attorney generals across the country to learn more about what they feel they need to address online bullying.  Puri states, “All the work that has been done in this area is already old by the time it is mapped.  What good is that?  Kids know how to turn off our devices and manage our privacy on social media.  I would like to work with Twitter, Facebook, Google, Snapchat and others to analyze their data on a daily basis.  It hasn’t been done and I want Bullyvention to be the impetus in creating relevant information about bullying that every website, parent and lawmaker can see and use.”

To learn more, sign up and volunteer your knowledge or data analyzing capability through ‘Heatmapping’ visit www.bullyvention.com/.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

East Brunswick

Vets4Warriors Gives Struggling Veterans a Lifeline

February 18, 2018

Fatima Aguilar’s first day on the job at Vets4Warriors was anything but normal. A military veteran who’s currently enlisted as a Second Lieutenant with the New Jersey National Guard, she found herself in a potential suicide crisis situation as soon as she hit the phones.

“I started around three and a half years ago on the overnight shift, and my very first call was a US ...

South Brunswick: Volunteer Soccer Coach Charged With Possessing And Distributing Child Pornography

SOUTH BRUNSWICK, NJ – A volunteer youth soccer coach and former Sunday school teacher is charged with possessing and distributing child pornography, officials said Thursday.

FBI agents and local law enforcement arrested Waldo Milla-Guerra, 49, at his Kendall Park home Thursday morning after executing a search warrant, officials said.

Milla-Guerra, a volunteer soccer coach with the ...

How to Talk with Kids About the Florida Shooting

Guest Column

The tragedy of the Florida school shooting is devastating leaving 17 killed and 15 injured. Our children can easily identify with what occurred yesterday. It will be the topic of conversation today in schools everywhere. School administrators are doing all they can to provide support and guidance. The shootings affect children, teachers, and school personnel. The ...

Rep. Watson Coleman Statement on Indictment of 13 Russian Nationals

February 20, 2018

Washington, D.C. — Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-NJ) issued the following statement in response to the announcement by the office of Special Counsel Robert Mueller of indictments of Russian businesses and nationals for a criminal conspiracy to interfere with the presidential election in 2016:

“Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s indictments are the latest ...

Upcoming Events

Sun, March 4, 3:00 PM

State Theatre New Jersey, New Brunswick

Staatskapelle Weimar

Arts & Entertainment

Fri, March 23, 8:00 PM

State Theatre New Jersey , New Brunswick

Motown the Musical

Arts & Entertainment

Sat, April 7, 2:00 PM

State Theatre New Jersey, New Brunswick

A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder

Arts & Entertainment

Library Hosts Program On Joint Replacement Surgery

EAST BRUNSWICK, NJ—East Brunswick Public Library (2 Jean Walling Civic Center) and Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital partner to present the special medical program “Considering Total Joint Replacement in 2018” at the library on Tuesday, March 6 at 7 pm.

Lead by board certified orthopaedic surgeon Dr. Stephen Kayiaros, the program gives a brief overview of arthritis of ...

Super Carb Diet by Bob Harper

Super Carb Diet by Bob Harper with Danny Pellegrino (St. Martin's Press, 2017)

It's hard to go on a serious diet, one on which you expect to be successful and maintain a loss. Fortunately, in his new book Super Carb Diet, Bob Harper has given the weight watching world a sensible new diet plan to help achieve a healthy weight.

Harper, host of NBC's popular show The Biggest Loser, ...

Two Nights by Kathy Reichs

Two Nights by Kathy Reichs (Bantom,2017)

How does a writer of a beloved series like Harry Potter or Temperance Brennan break out of their readers' expectations and try something new? For J.K. Rowlings it was the novels penned under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith; books about a maimed and very flawed private detective with the unlikely name of Cormoran Strike. For Kathy Reichs, it is the ...

EBPD: Safeguarding Students, Staff, and Residents in the Public Schools

February 20, 2018

EAST BRUNSWICK, NJ - The East Brunswick Police Department, in cooperation with the East Brunswick Board of Education, will be assisting the school security staff by providing police officers at our township public schools. It is the goal of the East Brunswick Police Department and the East Brunswick Board of Education to safeguard our students, staff and residents at our schools on a daily basis ...

'What Stays' exposes family secrets and lies

‘What Stays’ exposes family secrets, resentment and lies

By Liz Keill

SUMMIT, NJ – In an original play by Laura Ekstrand and Jason Szamreta, the Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre has provided an enlightening, funny and heart-felt view of family foibles.

Ekstrand has said that the germ of the play came from conversations with the ensemble members of the troupe, based on ...