2009 U. Ill. L. Rev. 1623 (2009)
Myspace, Yourspace, Ourspace: Student Cyberspeech, Bullying, and Their Impact on School Discipline

handle is hein.journals/unilllr2009 and id is 1633 raw text is: 




MYSPACE, YOURSPACE, OURSPACE: STUDENT
CYBERSPEECH, BULLYING, AND THEIR IMPACT ON
SCHOOL DISCIPLINE

                                                  EMILY K. KERKHOF


        When a student engages in bullying, tensions tend to arise be-
   tween that student's freedom of speech -guaranteed in the First
   Amendment-and the school's duty to provide its students with an
   environment that is safe and conducive to learning. Bullying on the
   Internet is no exception. Although several Supreme Court decisions
   address students' free speech rights, none have dealt with student
   speech on the Internet. Thus, lower courts have struggled to apply the
   Supreme Court's standards to cases involving student online speech.
   When called upon to determine the extent of school administrators'
   authority to discipline students for inappropriate online speech, lower
   courts do not reach consistent results. The author recognizes the in-
   terests in conflict- the interest in speaking freely, without government
   interference, as well as the interest in educating and protecting stu-
   dents- and recommends that courts apply the material and substan-
   tial disruption standard to best balance these interests. The author
   argues that it would not be suitable for courts to look to other fac-
   tors-including the location of the speech and whether the student-
   speaker intended to bring the speech onto campus-in the context of
   student speech on the Internet.

                          I. INTRODUCTION

     In a society as technologically dependent as the one in which we
live, it is not surprising to learn that as of August 2006, over 100 million
people had joined the social networking site MySpace.1 Another popular
networking Web site, Facebook, subscribed its 30 millionth user in July
2007.2 MySpace offers subscribers the opportunity to talk with friends,
meet other people, interact with family, or network with business people



    1. Abbi Adest, Rupert Murdoch Comments on Fox Interactive's Growth, SEEKING ALPHA,
Aug. 9, 2006, http://seekingalpha.com/article/15237-rupert-murdoch-comments-on-fox-interactive-s-
growth.
    2. Progressive Policy Institute, Facebook Added Its 30 Millionth Subscriber Yesterday, http://
www.ppionline.org/ppi-ci.cfm?knlgAreaID=108&subsecID=900003&contentID=254388 (last visited
Aug. 27,2009).


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