Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Blog?

Here we have two more examples of the futile attempt by schools to keep out the real world.

Last week one of our trainers told of how his principal instructed him to have Google blocked at the school. It seems that one of her colleagues at a meeting had recommended the move.

Her directive didn’t make a lot of sense since she didn’t ask him to do the same with Yahoo, MSN, Alta Vista or any of the dozens of other web search tools. It’s possible she actually meant Google Images, which many elementary schools in our system are blocking.

Either way, it’s clear this principal doesn’t understand either Google or the web in general. She’s probably under the illusion that our filtering system can protect students from everything she’s seen on the TV “special reports”.

It won’t, of course. The best she can expect from the electronic gatekeeper is to provide a starting point. From there it’s up to teachers to monitor and instruct their students. And to principals who understand the web well enough to provide guidance on how to do that.

Which brings us to the second example. Miguel reports that at least one school district is blocking this little rantfest and certain other blogs. It seems we’ve dared to mention the social networking tool that must not be named. You know, the center of all adolescent evil on the web.

It seems as if this particular site is one of several being used by students to coordinate walkouts in protest over the new immigration legislation pending in Congress.

However, in their quest to thwart one 21st century tool for organizing civil disobedience, administrators at these schools are resting under the same illusion of censorship as protection as our principal with a fear of Google.

Miguel suggests that we warp the name by substituting characters for letters, but I doubt that will do much good. These educational “leaders” will just find another concept mentioned in some blog somewhere to be afraid of.

And they’ll try in vain to shut that little piece of the real world out of their schools as well.

Wow! I’ve been censored! I’m not sure whether to be outraged or amused.

And to all those filters looking for references to the social networking tool that must not be named…

MySpace! MySpace! MySpace!

Choke on it!
Thanks, Diana, for the title of this entry. :-)

censorship, school, myspace