Editorial: Students should be able to visit Facebook

The Newtonite

This school should not block Facebook on its computers.

Facebook is beneficial to students, and the worst one could call it is a time-waster.

In order to block a website, the site should be harmful.

Some might say that Facebook is an easy way in which students can cyberbully each other. If bullying is the issue, the school should block any website with the potential for cyberbullying, such as email and Twitter.

This brings us to the matter of consistency. Even though none of these sites should be blocked, there should be consistency among blocked sites. Among social media sites, Myspace and Facebook are blocked, but Twitter is not. Until recently, mobile Facebook was not blocked.

By not being consistent, the school cannot send a clear message about why sites, such as Facebook, are blocked.

Although Facebook is branded as a time-waster in the eyes of many, in reality, Facebook provides benefits for students. Many students create Facebook groups in order to facilitate collaboration among peers in a specific class. These groups also allow students to collaborate with each other, as most students have a Facebook. If Facebook was unblocked in schools, these groups could increase in regularity and be more effective.

Students can also get news through social media sites such as Facebook. Let’s face it, teenagers do not want to spend time reading the newspaper or going to a news website such as the New York Times. With friends on Facebook posting and sharing news all day long, posts reliably depict current events. For example, when Osama bin Laden died last year, many students learned of the event through social media websites.
Facebook should be unblocked on the school computers because it is not harmful to students and because it can be a useful tool. We recommend this school reflect on the reasons why it blocked Facebook and to be slower to use its censoring power in the future.