Students remain conscious about social media

Nick Casey, Staff Writer

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From snapchatting to tweeting and posting pictures, social media plays a major part in the lives of students. Social media, for students, is a place for them to express themselves without any restrictions or worries of being punished. That is, until another student gets offended by something that’s posted, or a coach or teacher reads something vulgar on your account. Whether we know it or not, our accounts are monitored each day by people throughout the school.

These days, even the simplest of jokes can rub somebody the wrong way. People take something that was meant to be funny seriously, and feelings get hurt. Aside from that, one slip-up in a picture, or something you tweet about, can have impacts on whether a college accepts you or not, or whether you get hired for a job you’re applying for or not. Students, however, believe that because it is their account, they should be given the opportunity to explain why they posted something instead of being punished for it right away.

Senior Christian Clements was suspended two years ago for a picture he posted involving a teacher on Twitter.

“It’s a complicated matter,” Clements said. “If kids’ social media accounts are either violent or put themselves or other people in danger, I think that’s something that should be monitored. I think just in general there should be a more thorough process other than seeing something and then jumping to conclusions.”

There’s a major difference, however, between students making a harmless joke that was taken the wrong way, and making a threat over social media, or making a racially insensitive comment. Students in high school, along with adults and pro athletes, make comments involving race that could hurt them for many years down the line. While many people feel that student’s social media accounts shouldn’t be monitored, people agree on racial comments or racial threats being reason for punishment.

At Valencia High School in Valencia, California a student was suspended for racist remarks that were shown in a video that was posted on Twitter.

“Any student using language that promotes hatred or intolerance on our campuses will be counseled and held accountable for their actions,” a statement from Valencia High School said. “The use of offensive language is disappointing to the students and staff of Valencia High School who create an environment that is positive, safe, and accepting for everyone.”

Coaches at DGN are also aware about the power of social media over students. As coaches, they want their athletes to represent the program that they’re involved in, as well as the school, in the best way possible. Everything that is posted by an athlete can be directly linked back to the organization that the student is a part of.

Football coach Keith Lichtenberg is very active on social media, running their Twitter account. He makes sure that his athletes are representing the football program well by what they say. “Every single person that’s in our program is representing our program.” Lichtenberg said. “I think social media can be a great thing. However, social media also has a very dangerous trap to do the negative. You should be posting stuff that would be approved by your mom. We care about student’s representation of our program but we also care about the fact that you’re going to be going for jobs and college applications.”