Print 56 comment(s) - last by marraco.. on Mar 31 at 8:43 AM

Austin Carroll was expelled for posting profanity on Twitter  (Source:
The student said he posted it during non-school hours, but the school's computer tracking system says otherwise

An Indiana high school student was expelled for posting an inappropriate tweet on Twitter, possibly during non-school hours.

Austin Carroll, a former senior at Garrett High School in Garrett, Indiana, recently posted a tweet that used the F-word five times. But it's no big deal, since Twitter is a non-school-related account and the tweet was posted after school hours, right? Wrong.

Garrett High School's computer system is capable of tracking its students' social media sites on the Internet. According to Yahoo News, the tweet was posted at 2:30 a.m. -- clearly outside of school hours -- but even though Carroll tweeted from home, Garrett High School's computer system could have recognized the tweet when he logged in again at school.

The tweet in question is the following, where all BEEPs are actually F-words: "BEEP is one of those BEEP words you can BEEP put anywhere in a BEEP sentence and it still BEEP make sense."

Carroll claims the tweet was posted from home, but the school claims it was posted from Garrett High School. Carroll lost this battle and was expelled with three months left of his senior year.

"If my account is on my own personal account, I don't think the school or anybody should be looking at it," said Carroll. "Because it's my own personal stuff and it's none of their business. I didn't post the thing at school but their computer is saying that I did post it, and I shouldn't be getting in trouble for stuff I did on my own time, on my own computer."

Carroll will now finish his senior year at an alternative school, where he will still receive his diploma. However, other students at Garrett High School are not ready to back down quite yet. Some students tried to protest Carroll's expulsion, but local police made sure to stop them quickly.

"I totally didn't agree with what Austin said but I didn't agree with an expulsion either," said Carroll's mother. "I mean if they suspended him for 3 days or something, I would be fine with that but to kick him out of school, his senior year, 3 months to go, wrong."

It seems schools and the government are both getting a bit invasive when it comes to social media sites, since a recent DailyTech report described how government agencies and colleges are asking applicants/students to log onto Facebook pages and other social networks during interviews.

Sources: Yahoo News, Indiana News Center

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By corduroygt on 3/28/2012 9:28:03 AM , Rating: 4
Even if it was tweeted during school hours, it's not like people don't say the F word in high school.

Still not as bad as the UK jailing a man for 2 months for making racist remarks on Twitter.

By Arsynic on 3/28/2012 9:55:05 AM , Rating: 4
It wasn't even a racist remark.

By martin5000 on 3/28/2012 10:14:40 AM , Rating: 2
I'd say making a racist comment about someone who has just had heart failure live on tv is considerably worse. Not I think jail was the right punishment though.

By corduroygt on 3/28/2012 11:13:32 AM , Rating: 2
Tasteless speech is still free speech, you can't have the government decide what's tasteless or not. Otherwise we wouldn't have porn. You don't want to live in such a society.

By martin5000 on 3/28/2012 2:59:00 PM , Rating: 2
I agree, but I am still able to say one is worse than the other, I also have a right to my opinion!

By Reclaimer77 on 3/28/2012 10:47:51 AM , Rating: 1
Still not as bad as the UK jailing a man for 2 months for making racist remarks on Twitter.

There's no Freedom of Speech in the UK, so I'm not surprised.

We DO however, at least in theory apparently, have that freedom here. It's unacceptable that the school has the power to ruin a kids life for something he says while not even IN the school on the Internet.

By gixser on 3/28/2012 1:00:33 PM , Rating: 2
There's no Freedom of Speech in the UK, so I'm not surprised.

Please see:

So your distinction between the U.S and the U.K. is wrong. You might fairly state the U.K only has freedom of speech in theory and not in practice. De Jure v. De Facto.

By Reclaimer77 on 3/28/2012 1:19:24 PM , Rating: 1
There's a key difference between the U.S and every other countries Constitution or set of laws.

Our Founders believed our rights were inalienable and self evident. That they extended to us just by being human beings. And the purpose of the Bill of Rights and Constitution were to protect, NOT DEFINE, these rights.

Everywhere else, especially the UK, the rights and protections of the citizens were granted BY the Government. And the logical progression of this practice is if all your rights and freedoms extend from the ruling class on down, than it's very easy to also take away those rights or modify them.

There is no "Freedom of speech" in the UK extended to it's citizens. I'm not even sure you understand the link you provided. That is the Bill of Rights for PARLIAMENT, not the general population.

"the freedom of speech and debates or proceedings in Parliament ought not to be impeached or questioned in any court or place out of Parliament "

By gixser on 3/28/2012 6:51:50 PM , Rating: 2
Glad you said "set of laws".

My point in providing the link was to indicate the development of the "notion of rights", up to and including the belief they are inalienable. This process may be traced to the Magna Carta (in the UK), through the Age of Enlightenment and Classical Liberalism to the present day. It didn't begin with the Bill of Rights. Please see:

The Bill of Rights 1689 is not a bill of rights for Parliament as you assert. The Freedom of Speech provisions are to protect speech within Parliament. The other provisions apply to all Englishmen.

So, you are right in saying there is no single codified right to "freedom of speech" in the UK but you are wrong in saying or implying there is no right to "freedom of speech" or "freedon of expression" in the UK.

So what is your basis for the following?:
There's no Freedom of Speech in the UK

By Reclaimer77 on 3/29/2012 9:14:38 AM , Rating: 1
UK law imposes a number of limitations on freedom of speech not found in some other jurisdictions. For example, its laws recognise the crimes of incitement to racial hatred and incitement to religious hatred. UK laws on defamation are also considered among the strictest in the Western world, imposing a high burden of proof on the defendant. However, the Education (No. 2) Act 1986 guarantees freedom of speech (within institutions of further education and institutions of higher education) as long as it is within the law

If that's your idea of "Freedom of Speech" than we have diametrically differing views on what freedom is. And again, I see NO such general "freedom of speech" as applied to the general population. I see it being applied to Parliament and here in educational institutions.

Again, you miss my point. Without a clearly expressed goal of defending the Freedom of Speech, an inalienable right, instead of a body of people GRANTING it, there is no such Freedom in reality.

By martin5000 on 3/28/2012 3:01:13 PM , Rating: 2
There's no Freedom of Speech in the UK, so I'm not surprised.

I believe the correct internet term to use here is "u mad bro?".

"I modded down, down, down, and the flames went higher." -- Sven Olsen

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