Skip to Content
Uncategorized

Virtual School Grounds?

Not sure if the story has made the national news yet, but it is the buzz of talk radio in Atlanta these days. Two middle school students in Gwinnett County, Georgia, got suspended this week for running a racist website….
October 9, 2003

Not sure if the story has made the national news yet, but it is the buzz of talk radio in Atlanta these days. Two middle school students in Gwinnett County, Georgia, got suspended this week for running a racist website. The website was not school sponsored, was produced from a computer based in one of the student’s homes, was done outside school hours, but the school officials felt that it’s content was sufficient grounds for suspension.

For the moment, let’s ignore the red button issue – the racist content. Suppose the students had written something which was critical of school officials, which had religious content, which was anti-American, which was pro-Arab, which advocated condom use, you name it, the issue would be pretty much the same. And in fact, nation-wide, pretty much every one of these examples can be attached to a real case where a student faced punished from his or her school because of something they did in cyberspace. The Student Press Law Center publishes a useful online guide, summarizing such cases and the legal debates surrounding them.

The core issue here is whether school grounds extend further into cyberspace than they do into physical space since web-based content can be brought into the classroom at the click of a mouse. You couldn’t come into my home and suspend me for something I read or wrote. So, why should you be able to do so if I write it on my computer? If we go down that path, what kinds of free expression rights, if any, will be left to American teens?

Keep Reading

Most Popular

AGI is just chatter for now concept
AGI is just chatter for now concept

The hype around DeepMind’s new AI model misses what’s actually cool about it

Some worry that the chatter about these tools is doing the whole field a disservice.

Workers disinfect the street outside Shijiazhuang Railway Station
Workers disinfect the street outside Shijiazhuang Railway Station

Why China is still obsessed with disinfecting everything

Most public health bodies dealing with covid have long since moved on from the idea of surface transmission. China’s didn’t—and that helps it control the narrative about the disease’s origins and danger.

Europe's AI Act concept
Europe's AI Act concept

A quick guide to the most important AI law you’ve never heard of

The European Union is planning new legislation aimed at curbing the worst harms associated with artificial intelligence.

Stay connected

Illustration by Rose WongIllustration by Rose Wong

Get the latest updates from
MIT Technology Review

Discover special offers, top stories, upcoming events, and more.

Thank you for submitting your email!

Explore more newsletters

It looks like something went wrong.

We’re having trouble saving your preferences. Try refreshing this page and updating them one more time. If you continue to get this message, reach out to us at customer-service@technologyreview.com with a list of newsletters you’d like to receive.