Because “92% of students log into Facebook and spend an average of 147 minutes there per week, according to the Student Monitor” (Kolowich) and they also use other sites heavily, Harrisburg University of Science and Technology shut down all campus access to social media for a week. The blackout affected everyone at the school, students, staff, and faculty, many of whom went elsewhere to find computers or logged on to the sites from their phones. Interestingly, since Harrisburg requires laptops for all students, some decided that they might as well listen to the lectures since they couldn’t check into Facebook during class. Provost Eric Darr explained that “The university never expected full abstinence from students…nor was it trying to conduct a scientific experiment” (Kolowich).
Most students at this university live off campus, where Internet access can’t be controlled by the school. What would happen with a social media blackout at Prairie View A&M, where so many students, especially freshmen, DO live on campus? How long could you avoid logging into Facebook or Twitter on your phone?
Kolowich, Steve. “College’s Attempt to Block Facebook, Twitter, IMs Fails.” USA Today. USA Today, 16 Sep. 2010. Web. 3 Oct. 2010. <http://www.usatoday.com/news/education/2010-09-16-IHE-facebook_blockade16_ST_N.htm>.