Saturday, 20 February 2010

Doublethink in action

This is seriously scary.

As posted by Leg-Iron, a US school district gave away free laptops to students. They didn't mention that as a "security feature", they had installed software giving them remote access to the webcam carried by the laptop. The laptop that the teenagers were taking home to use in private.

How did this come to light?

Blake Robbins, a student at Harriton high school, was hauled into the assistant principal Lindy Matsko's office, shown a photograph taken on the laptop in his home and disciplined for "improper behaviour".
Not illegal behaviour, presumably, else the police would have been involved. So the school saw fit to discipline him for engaging in legal activities at home of which the school did not approve. We don't know what the activites were (the mind boggles), but since when is it the school's responsibility?

Worse still, a spokesman said:

"The district never activated the security feature for any other purpose or in any other manner whatsoever," he wrote. "We regret if this situation has caused any concern or inconvenience among our students and families."
Err, yes you did. You showed Blake Robbins the evidence that you had. In what way can that be anything other than an utter blatant lie?

At least it couldn't happen here. Oh, hang on...


  1. At least, being the US, that school district will now have a lot of rapacious lawyers circling, scenting blood...

  2. And a few Dads with baseball bats, I suspect.

  3. Labour promise free laptops all the time.

    In this spirit Mr Brown announced a policy now forgotten by most.
    In October 1999 he pledged: "We will pioneer a system so people can use computers and software in the new century the way local libraries have loaned books in the last century."

  4. They gave laptops to teenagers and expected them to not use them to indulge in a bit of teen spirit? And then filmed them doing it? Wouldn't that come under child porn laws here?

  5. What had he been seen doing? Had he murdered his parents? They don't feature.