You probably have seen all over Facebook recently,
the spotted pages which are based on things such as different places like the
university halls or campus, a gym, a shopping centre, anything! So, what I
would like to write about is whether these things are good or bad and whether
they should be banned or taken down. Are these pages harmful or harmless?
The basic idea of these pages is that you click the
like button on the page, and if you fancy it. You can write an anonymous
message to someone, or about someone and you send them in via the Facebook
message. The mediators of this page then post whatever you have written
anonymously for whoever has liked the page – to see it.
So what I wanted to write about is why I,
personally, hate these pages.
I don’t know about anyone else who sometimes likes
to walk to the shop in their pyjamas with their hair greasy and messy but I
quite like to do it without people commenting on it on Facebook, anonymously. It
is more than uncomfortable and it makes me feel like I cannot go to the gym
without people looking at me or maybe writing something on one of these pages
about the way I looked or acted. Aberdeen University even has one about the
library – which started off quite funny, and cute with people writing things that
they were too shy to say to someone’s face, including light hearted flirtation
but this escalated to things such as asking to meet in the toilets, which is
definitely more than inappropriate to be posting on a public page on Facebook,and this is when I turned against the idea of this pages.
These pages started to get worse, and in the end,
the ones based around my university (University of Aberdeen) were taken down by University officials.
But these were of course back up and running in weeks, with 1,800 likes on one
of them and the same inappropriate comments were being posted online within a
matter of days. A student commented on the recent revival of the ‘‘Spotted: Aberdeen University Library’’ page: “Just when I felt safe from public ridicule. I guess I will have to start washing and dressing up to go to the fricking library again” – which is exactly how I felt when this happened!
Now, it could be argued that these pages were good
at getting people’s comments out there; the shy people who always wanted to
speak to someone they never had the guts to speak to face to face. This is fantastic for them… but when people become rude, and obnoxious of pages such as these, it becomes a hassle for people, and these kinds of things should be taken down.
Our university newspaper published an article on
this issue in which they stated that they should be shut down and have been
encouraging students ‘to be more professional on the internet after web pages’
such as these spotted pages which ‘were used for bullying’ these pages are similar to the University confessions pages which were used in similar ways. ‘‘Aberdeen University Confessions’’ went viral in October 2012 and the stories shared were reported as offensive by many students.Allegations of sexual assault posted on the page led to police involvement and the administrators of the page eventually agreed to deactivate it.
Some people from the University of Aberdeen have
suggested that these pages should be removed, and should not be allowed to be
used in the public domain they are considered harmless sometimes but more often
than not there is something on these pages that does offend someone somewhere
and it would be useful to remove these things for fear of something escalating
into something more serious. It has been suggested that these websites could
eventually have the same effect as some troll websites have had, resulting in
the administrators serving prison sentences which I’m sure is not what people
want for University Students.
The University have even considered blocking social media websites on the University WIFI network, which would be more than annoying. The students should not have to suffer because of a few people that can’t control themselves on social networking websites. Whilst this could put a stop to the horrible misuse of the sites, it would be taking it too far. It’s not fair to punish everyone for a few people’s mistakes, so yes. Taking down these spotted pages is what should be done, it seems like the only way to solve issue.
So thats what i think about these pages, what do you think?