Recently on Facebook there was a scandal on the verge of starting a bad reputation for AHS with the creation of some vulgar comments made by some anonymous AHS students.
It all started with the compliments page, which was started with a positive idea in mind. It was a place where people could compliment other AHS students. It’s totally anonymous and it is all about making someone smile after a hard day at school.
“I like the idea behind the compliments page,” said AHS senior Drew Wall, “though I don’t know if it amounts to actual content or just a bunch of feel good, pat each other on the back and stick the complaining degenerates on the curb sort of thing.”
Then the uncensored page showed up in response to the compliments page. The uncensored page began with the goal of venting the not-so-picture-perfect side to AHS’s stories.
“I think that might have been the idea behind the ‘uncensored’ page: people who feel their opinions aren’t heard,” said Wall. “Honestly, whatever happened on that page reflects on the student body.”
Though it started out that way, it was turned into something worse. Vulgar, insulting messages showed up on the page, and soon progressed to posts that were offensive to the school administration. The school sent a request to Facebook to take down the page.
Yet everyone needs to vent, and students were using Facebook to get their frustrations with life out.
“True, an uncensored page brings that sort of people that do bad things,” said Wall, “but at the same time, if someone wants to express what they really think about our school, they should have a place to do so.”
When the uncensored page got worse, the compliments page responded passionately, while others didn’t really care about the entire situation.
“I find the arguments hilarious. Also a bit immature, but I found a lot of humor in seeing both parties hash it out online,” said senior Paula Cieszkiewicz. “I think it has leveled out, though…I haven’t seen much in a while, so I think they got all their laughs out. Pretty ridiculous.”
Others just thought the whole idea of the uncensored page was wrong.
“It shouldn’t have been so public…I don’t agree with it [Uncensored page]. I didn’t join it,” said AHS junior Ellen Jetland.
To every negative there is a positive and the uncensored page’s positive is the compliments page, set up by the ASB. It is a positive place for people to tell their feelings about others. Though some of the compliments were a little bit on the shallow side, most people really enjoy the page.
“It’s certainly nice to have a place to tell other people that they’ve done a good job,” said Wall. “Cause ya don’t always get the opportunity.”
This opportunity has turned into a mess of school policies and feelings. When it comes to social media there isn’t a school policy that deals with this particular situation, but the district does say that the harassment of teachers and students is not allowed, especially when it is done in the form of technology. In fact, any form of electronic harassment is a violation to the Acceptable Use Policy that students are required to sign every year.
“Using technology such as computers, cellular phones, handheld devices, smartphones, etc. owned by the district or used on the district’s grounds, or at a district-sponsored event to harass, bully, or intimidate any student, staff member, or district volunteer. Intentionally accessing and/or downloading vulgar or obscene materials. Communicating downloaded vulgar or obscene materials to others,” carry serious consequences, according to the Highline Schools Rights and Responsibilities 2012-2013.
It doesn’t specifically talk about Facebook, but it does mention that any electronic harassment is prohibited. When it comes down to it, the consequences aren’t worth the popularity.
“I live by Thumper’s mother’s advice,” said AHS office assistant Theda Hiranaka. “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say nothing at all.“