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Experiment infringes on student rights

 Pennsylvania’s Harrisburg University of Science and Technology is deciding to ban Facebook, Twitter, and instant messaging on main campus and dorm rooms as an experiment for students.  The only online communication the students are allowed to use is e-mail. The school is calling this experiment; get this, a “blackout.”
 The problem with this so-called experiment is that these students, as with all students, pay damn good money to get an education and do as they please.  Restricting access to online communication does nothing but frustrate students.
 The reason Harrisburg University of Science and Technology is conducting this experiment is because they want “students to think about how much they’re using technology in their daily lives and what kind of impact it has.”  Taking away technology for the students is just going to make them use it more when they can have access again.
 After the “blackout,” some students will have to write a reflective essay on this experience without their typical online activity. So they are combining something academic with something that students already don’t want to do.
 What’s the point of punishing the whole student body for an experiment that only a few students will report on?
 This university is directly forcing their outlook on people; students on-campus are being forced to participate.  The administration is infringing on the student’s freedom to look at whatever they want to online.
 If you think about it, we have the ability to look at porn and do reports on it, yet these students are being banned from communicating with friends with the intent of teaching them a lesson.
 The actual reason for their experiment could work, but the plan to achieve the results they wanted wasn’t properly thought out.
 Think about this: VSU decides to conduct an experiment eliminating social networks for the sole reason of an experiment. Which students will participate?
Who is going to sit back and let the administration tell them they are not able to access social networks on computers that they pay for?
 The overuse of technology can be a problem for some, but it should be the student’s option to change their lifestyle, no one else’s.

This editorial was written by Dorsena Drakeford (dmdrakeford@valdosta.edu) and it expresses the opinion of the entire editorial staff.

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