Freedom of speech: it is one of American’s most basic rights as citizens. Whether it is the ability to say what you want in public or assert an idea without fear of being persecuted, we certainly enjoy it much more than we appreciate it.

    From this very paper to Facebook and Twitter, college students particularly are immersed so deep in communication and the ability to express their opinion. It is such a privilege to have this ability. However, when does it become too much?

    Colleges and universities have wrestled with the fairly new concept of monitoring students’ activity on Facebook, Twitter, and other social networks. If the institution found something they considered inappropriate on a student’s page, they punish them on different levels of discipline, including expulsion.

    Countless reports on the news have shown the controversies on all extremes dealing with this issue. Lawsuits, court cases, and hurt feelings have resulted on numerous occasions.

    Censorship is not a new fad that has miraculously appeared in society, but since some ignorant students post inappropriate stuff on their Facebook wall, schools feel the need to speak up.

    The great author Mark Twain explained it best: “Censorship is telling a man he can’t have a steak just because a baby can’t chew it.”

    Just because a school says something is wrong or immoral on a student’s page does not mean they have the right to do anything about it.

    Since when did it become ok for an institution to dictate what a student should or should not say? Truly, the only tie a college, university, or even a high school has to its students is their money. Otherwise, with the exception of a few teachers of course, a school could not care whether or not you succeed.

    Certainly, a person should not abuse their privileges on these websites. There is nothing more annoying than seeing a friend’s drunken photos from last night or unnecessarily raunchy statuses to clutter up one’s newsfeed.

    Institutions have absolutely no business snooping on their students in that way, public or not. It is none of their concern and should be left up to the student to make the choice whether to post or not to post.

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