School forces 12 year old to hand over her Facebook password

A Minnesota middle school is being sued after it forced a sixth grader to give up her Facebook login. Some people need a few lessons in Constitutional rights.

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Three: The school administration got the parents involved before taking any action.

Four: The student was not coerced or intimidated into giving up the password to his account. He was just sent home for a few days.

Five: The misdeed took place in public, on a Facebook update others could read. It wasn’t contained in a private message.

Other students at this school were also suspended for longer periods after they used Facebook to harass and/or bully other kids. This teen got off relatively easy. But I think the school handled it correctly.

The Minnewaska school? Not so much. I think R. S. and the ACLU have an excellent case against the school district, and I hope somebody loses their job over it. But I bet it won’t be the last time we hear about something like this.

Meanwhile, I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again: Facebook needs to fix its kid problem. Personally I think Facebook should spin off a separate version of the network for kids age 10 to 17, requiring authentication and signoff by parents.

There are already social networks dedicated to tweens, such as Imbee. Unfortunately, they’re not where the kids want to be. They want to be with their friends who are on Facebook. And they will be – regardless of any rules Facebook publishes and/or pretends to enforce.

Got a question about social media? TY4NS blogger Dan Tynan may have the answer (and if not, he’ll make something up). Visit his snarky, occasionally NSFW blog eSarcasm or follow him on Twitter: @tynanwrites. For the latest IT news, analysis and how-to’s, follow ITworld on Twitter and Facebook.

Now read this:
Facebook's 'man in the middle' attack on our data
Making Facebook private won't protect you
Google’s personalized search results are way too personal

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