Tuesday, January 27, 2009

There is, perhaps, nothing I like better in this world than free speech. I hate censorship with a passion and love when people are able to speak their minds. However, there is something out there that is raining on my free speech parade and I don't like it.

Sometime over the past year, I read an article about a website called "Juicy Campus." Since I am nearly 25, and no longer young and hip, I hadn't heard of this site, so I investigated it. The site is broken down by school and you can search for your school, and then read the anonymous gossip that people have posted. The site doesn't require even a mere username, so it's really completely anonymous. At the time I looked at it before, only one school from my state was on it and since I didn't go there, it wasn't really interesting to me. Over the past weekend, however, my roommate's friend was in town and telling us how people were trashing her on this website. So, I decided to visit it again, and my school is now on there...great.

I think that this website is a disaster waiting to happen. A bunch of no-ball nerds are sitting behind their computer making up "gossip" about people that are probably better than them. On the site for my school, certain girls are consistently talked about with regard to their sexual activities. Hopefully these girls are able to recognize that the asshats writing on the site are probably just taking a break from Dungeons & Dragons and are not people worthy of any time or attention. In the article I read last year, a girl had to take a semester off from school because the stuff written about her on the site was so damaging.

Again, I love free speech with all my heart, but the existence of this site makes me have conflicting feelings. I think that people should own their opinions, and Juicy Campus promotes a divergence from that. If you're going to say something bad about someone and put it out there for all the world to see, I don't think you should have the luxury of being completely anonymous. There are anonymous blogs and websites out there, of course, which I also don't love. But Juicy Campus's goal is to get people to write scathing things and then not face any consequences. It's lame. It's for pussies.

All of this makes me happy that I wasn't in high school when Facebook and MySpace existed and that I got out of college before Juicy Campus hit. I feel bad for the kids who have to deal with this stuff on a daily basis... and I am truly worried about what is to come next in the technological bullying arena.

Internet Tough Girl (Lauren)


Junior said...

OMG, Lauren, that site is bad news. My college is on there but luckily it's just Greek people talking smack, but even still, something like this does no good when you have a bunch of young people in a confined space who have a lot of downtime on their hands... (who are we kidding, you don't study all the time...)

Lauren said...

Yeah, my school is a lot of Greek smack talking, too.
I just really feel bad for kids that have to deal with this kind of stuff on a daily basis. It makes me slightly okay with being old haha.