Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Internet& Ethics...

Last week sometime the assignment in my Phil& Ethics class was to listen to a podcast on NRP. This specific podcast was about a high school administrator looking through facebook and stumbling across some picture of his students (athletes) at a party. The athletes had signed an agreement that if they were to be caught at a party were there was drinking then there would be serious consequences.

After listening to the podcast we were to write a response giving our own moral and ethical views on the topic of internet privacy. To explain what we thought the administration should have done. And to talk about whether or not there was something ethically wrong about schools looking on facebook.

These are my thoughts...

Facebook is not only for high school students. It was originally created for college students, as a way to stay in touch with their friends from back home. It slowly began expanding into high schools and even into middle schools. Now, just as many adults have facebooks as students do. Anyone can choose to have a profile and ask to become friends with who ever they would like to. Also, anyone has the ability to deny a friend request or even completely block a user. A student could put their profile on private so only friends can see it.

Unfortunately, sometimes things get seen by the wrong people. I have the perfect example of this. I have hosted over a dozen parties at my house. None of these parties had any alcohol or drugs at them; I would never be able to do that to my mother. My Halloween party that I had my junior year got a little crazy. There were about twenty to thirty of my friends there. We were all in costumes, so more then the normal amounts of pictures were taken. Like me, all of my friends are loud, and obnoxious, and somehow this always shows in pictures. One of the teachers at my school got a hold of these pictures by using her daughter’s facebook. This teacher assumed that there was alcohol at my house so she was going to report all of the kids in the pictures to administration. It all got sorted out soon after that and everything turned out fine.

I don’t think that it was right for the administration to suspend the athletes for being at a party just based on pictures. Just like what happened with my party, no one really knows what is going on unless the person was there to witness it. Even though there was drinking going on at this party there was no evidence that they were drinking.

With facebook becoming larger and larger, I wish that students would understand that nothing is really private. There are ways to hide things, but not everything. I am friends with my boss, my minister, and with many of my high school teachers on facebook. I know that they can see anything that I post, because of this I am conscientious of what I put online.

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