Wednesday, March 23, 2011
My Blogs are Blocked-Life is Not Filtered
Posted on Blogger Help forums:
Could Blogger re-consider allowing nudity & sexual content? My school library blog is now blocked in my district.
I am a librarian, I believe in free speech, & I am against censorship. However, My school district just blocked Blogger for EVERYone because Blogger allows Nudity & Sexual content.
I've had my Daring School Library blog for 5+ years - It's a conversation between my students, community, and the world about our library program & practice. We highlight student achievements, new books, web 2.0 tools, QR codes, and the cool things we do in our awesome school. This blog you're reading...I didn't start this until I got inspired after NECC09 - my MHMS school library blog is my first love my oldest child!
YouTube blocks nudity & sexual content, why not Blogger? If Blogger just took the same tact "YouTube is not for pornography or sexually explicit content. If this describes your video, even if it's a video of yourself, don't post it on YouTube." Then all the educational blogs out there - including mine - would not be blocked. Also taking off the "next blog" button would be very helpful since some of the next blogs are NOT appropriate. I've been a Google educator since 2004 I love me my Google! I've been championing my district to have a Google Server & use the Educational apps! Now this.
The Blogger Content Warning does not say anything about age... just "I understand and wish to continue" or "I do not wish to continue" - This is just not good enough if a student stumbles across pornographic material WHILST researching in SCHOOL. If they at least had a warning about being over 18 then we could say the student - if they chose the content - was breaking the Acceptable Use Policy but as it's worded - no such luck. I can't even defend that. And my students deserve more.
If you can't change your business strategy in this matter - can you give me any advice on how to ask my District to consider unblocking our Library Blog? When a blogger designates their blog as having "adult content" can filters just block THOSE sites & leave other sites clear? I don't know much about that kind of higher level of coding or filtering (html sure but I'm really a software girl) but I can pass along any suggestions you might have.
UPDATE: From the Technology Security Analyst - Technology Department
Howard County Public School System
"Take a look at the server name that hosts your screen shot of youtube's policy (1.bp.blogspot.com). If you were to look at the server name of "questionable" content you would notice that the server name is the same. This is why we can not allow one without the other. The server name used to call adult content is the same as your non-adult content."
So apparently can't block the bad without blocking the good.
I ardently believe in teaching without a filter. Life is not filtered. We need to teach digital citizenship so that students can evaluate web content with knowledge, discernment, & ethics. We also need to teach with effective classroom management. BUT websites have to meet us halfway and not make it REALLY easy to see pornographic content. Also, some districts are not there yet. I need ammunition or a change of heart on this issue.
'Cause really, isn't there just enough porn on the Interwebs as it is?
The Daring Librarian
Will I post this on my school blog? I don't know. What do you think? I think I'm gonna sleep on it and talk to my principal. Who, IRONICALLY just this week wanted me to work with him to get his first Blogger blog going! I really try and keep political stuff out of my school blog cause that blog has a different mission...it's all for the kids. Hmmm Well, if I do...post it... I guess I won't be doing so from school! Will I be moving THIS blog? Nahh I already bought the domain name and this is for my peers not my kids.
Photo By stephend9 Stephen Durham
DISCLAIMER: The opinions expressed here are my own - not my employer. I might not always be eloquent, I am often immature and snarky but I am passionate about serving my students, school, & community and trying to do the best job I can.