The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Opinion-Warning: Big Brother reads blogs

Opinion-Warning: Big Brother reads blogs

edcartoon20707With an estimated 75 million plus users, Myspace.com has become virtually an overnight phenomenon.
Hitwise.com reported that Myspace was the most visited Web site by U.S. Internet users for the week ending last July 8, topping Google and Yahoo.

With 240,000 new daily users joining Myspace, that amounts to 10,593 page views per second, according to Techcrunch.com.

In short, someone’s most personal information is literally at the entire world’s fingertips.

And Myspace is not alone. Facebook.com reports its ranking as seventh among U.S. net users.

Not everyone uses some type of social networking, but everyone can be a networking community user, including college admission officers, neighborhood psychopaths and local law enforcement agencies.

Suggestively nude photos of students, a blog posting one’s loathing of authority or public photos acknowledging a student’s use of alcohol or drugs can be the deciding factor for the sorority or fraternity someone wants to pledge.

Not only could this affect extra-curricular activities, it could cost students admission all together.

A high school freshman in Maryland was suspended because of online photos, and an underage drinking party at George Washington University was busted after police found invitations online, the Boston Tribune reported.

One Tarrant County College instructor who works closely with colleges throughout Texas said fraternities and sororities look at Facebook and Myspace. These Greek organizations want to determine how pledges might present themselves and whether the pledges have the character the groups are looking for.

Another TCC instructor knows of at least two English and two speech teachers at TCC who look at their new students’ Myspace or Facebook profiles. Students are pre-judged about their personality from their Web sites.

Although TCC has no reported incidents with on-line profiles, high school and college campuses across the country are suspending, terminating and down right banning the use of these sites. The ban is not only on campus but off campus too for some private schools.

According to an article in USA Today, at least one college applicant was denied admission in part because of his entries on LiveJournal. The student had reportedly posted hostile comments in his blog about certain college officials.

The article referenced a Louisiana State case in which swimmers criticized coaches in their blogs and, as a result, were kicked off the team.

Some may think this practice is unfair or an infringement of one’s personal life. After all, what one does in his time is his business.

But students should not make their business the whole world’s business by posting it on the Internet.

We need to follow the grandma rule: don’t post anything in your blog you wouldn’t want your grandma to see.

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