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    You and the Internet

    Can I be prosecuted for comments on the Internet?


    Just a few years ago, it was uncommon for someone to be prosecuted for content posted on the Internet.  However, since  cyberbullying is now so prevalent, law enforcement is stepping up investigations where victims are threatened, harassed or stalked online or by cellphone. There have been a number of cyberbullying cases in …

    Can I access my personal site from a school computer?


     Jon* attended middle school in Ohio.  On his own time and computer he created a website describing the exploits of his friends who were skate boarders.  Although the language was juvenile and crude, the court found nothing obscene about the site.  It also included a section called “Losers” …

    Can you be suspended for Internet speech and expression?

    Computer Drawing

    Aaron* was in the 8th grade at Weedsport Middle School in New York.  He designed an AOL Instant Message icon on his parent’s home computer.  It depicted a hand-drawn pistol shooting at a person’s head.  Underneath was the statement “Kill Mr. VanderMolen,” Aaron’s English teacher. Aaron …

    Do students have freedom of speech on social networks like Facebook?


     Justin* was a 17-year-old senior at Hickory High School in Pennsylvania.  On his grandmother’s computer he created a parody of the school’s principal and posted it on MySpace. It contained silly questions and answers and crude language with the principal’s picture taken from the school’s …

    What if I make a comment on someone else’s site?


    Joshua* went  to Kettering High School in Michigan.  He contributed to a website called “Satan’s web page” that was created by another student.  Joshua added a list of “people I wish would die.”  He was suspended for one semester and spent three days hospitalized for a …

    Can I get in trouble at school for what I write on my home computer?


    The short answer is “it depends.” If your comments on the Internet amount to a threat to anyone or cause disruption at school, yes the school may discipline you. Even though you have constitutional rights as a person which apply at school, there are limits to …

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