Indiana Schools Consider Facebook Restrictions for Student Athletes

Under the new rules, student athletes would not be allowed to slander or make a derogatory statements about a teammate or a member of an opposing team

Sunday, Feb 2, 2014  |  Updated 11:30 AM CDT
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Two Northwest Indiana school districts are reportedly planning to enact restrictions on the use of Facebook and other social media sites by student athletes.

School officials in LaPorte and Michigan City are developing the social media restrictions, expected to be in place by the start of the fall semester, according to the Northwest Indiana Times.

Under the new rules, student athletes would not be allowed to slander or make a derogatory statements about a teammate or a member of an opposing team.

Students who violate the rules would face disciplinary action. What exactly the disciplinary action entails will be decided by a committee.

There have been no reports of inappropriate postings by athletes at either school, but officials say the “potential is high,” the NWI Times reports.

Some have debated that the right to use social media is protected under a student’s First Amendment rights.

Ken Falk, the legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana, told the NWI Times that the organization has never handled a complaint regarding restrictions on social media by schools, but said a close look would be given to the matter if a complaint were filed.
 

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