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Page name: stop blocking Elftown [Logged in view] [RSS]
2008-02-01 22:48:33
Last author: Hedda
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Stop blocking Elftown!


The school Example High has blocked the international art and literature site Elftown. This is done because the school feels that it's very bad for the students to learn how to read and write properly while learning about art and different cultures around the globe in a fun way.

Elftown may not be useful that often for school work, but it teaches written communication way better than any school is doing. It's an indisputable fact that 16 year olds who have been using Elftown for 3 years are handling written communication much better than the average adult.

The blocking also has psychological effects on the students. They are being oppressed, which in the best scenario leads to rebellion and vandalism of the principal's car. In the worst scenario they turn into indolent drones who feel that school is just a prison.

The school might think that there is "immoral" content on Elftown. It might be true depending on your views, but would you also forbid Shakespeare because of that? Shakespeare's filth is often accepted as it's a very important part of the culture. The positive effects are more important than the unlikely fact that young people's heads might explode after reading it. And when you understand that, then it should be obvious that the culture that you learn on Elftown is way more important for both future networking and for understanding of what dreams, ideas and feelings the world is going to be built on.

So please put this stupid idea of blocking Elftown in the history-books where it belongs. Stand up for teaching the students how to grow up without censorship and don't join the dark side that fights against freedom and democracy!

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Here is a letter I wrote to the principal of a blocking school 2008-02-01:
Internet Filtering, Elftown

It has come to my attention that your school is blocking access to www.elftown.com. I hope this is just a mistake. Elftown is an international community for artists and writers, hosted by the computer club at Linköping University in Sweden.

I understand that the school computers should primarily
be used for school assignments, but it's also very important to give students a general interest of the rest of the world and written communication. Students doing for example a report on foreign cultures should be able to do it on Elftown where there are people in their age with similar interests.

Many of your students can't point out USA on a map, and to be frank, they write English quite badly. But after running Elftown since 2002, I know that Elftowners have greatly improved their skills, myself included.

I hope the blocking was just a mistake so I'll not write
XXX High School on
http://www.elftown.com/_evil%20schools
until next week so that you have a chance to correct the broken filtering.

Feel free to ask me questions, who ever ends up handling this matter!

/Henrik Wallin, Mayor of Elftown since 2002.

(Of course don't sign it with my name if you use this letter, but you're welcome to use it in full or in parts otherwise.)

Back to My School is blocking Elftown






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2006-11-25 [Hedda]: Please correct any language-errors and write comments on the arguments or the overall thread.

My idea is to give the feeling among the school-board that "Oupps, this was a little mistake, but we can correct it at once and still look good.". But... Well, I'm generally quite not nice to idiots, so I might have been a little strong in my language anyway.

2006-11-27 [Faery]: strong% You call this strong? This would make any schoolboard angry as hell! I'll try to write a more institutional type of letter when I'm back to a les russian i.e. crazy way of life! :P

2006-11-27 [Hedda]: Angry as hell? Oh... But then they maybe die in heartattacks, and that can't be bad... <img:img/mood/2706_1128818519.gif>

2006-11-27 [Tigers and Trees]: It wasn't my principal who blocked the site, it was the librarian. It was back when Elftown was just being used as a chat source for emo kids.

2006-11-27 [Avrora_Black]: That sounds like a speach that someone would shout in the most intense moment of an adventure movie;) I like it:D My school had Elftown blocked for some time, but then it got unblocked...I don't even know why they blocked it in the first place...<img:img/mood/44166_1164145209.gif>

2006-12-15 [Fearathress]: Wow. That is one way to get my school boards attention. Though i dont think you used "stong language" as you put it. I have seen worse. Anyway, I will have to write my schoolboard a letter based on what you said Hedda. <img:stuff/sm-gif.gif>

2006-12-17 [Artsieladie]: I like it! It's straight & to the point! Too bad if the jerks sitting on the school boards don't like it! They'd rather you placate them, as is generally their own practice! <img:stuff/ThumbsUp_Wh_Mood_rev.gif>

2007-01-07 [sedumwave]: It was my Counselor who blocked elftown. The School Conselor didn't agree, but after trying to commit suicide, you're whole life is pretty much blocked. My parents don't care, and thats why i can still come once in a while.

2007-01-07 [sedumwave]: No matter how many letters we write, they won' t unblock Elftown!

2007-02-08 [light.]: ..Get someone else to submit it maybe? If they won't listen to you, maybe someone else in your community can help?

2007-03-27 [Draco Kinam]: In my opinion, thank you to post a letter like that...because the school technicians don't know the websites we visit and they don't know what they contain, they just block them if they pass near you and see a girl/boy with just and underwear and a cap trying to make fun of herself/himself in a picture.They just say: "Oh they're watching porn we have to block the site..." and they block it....and if we explain no this is an artistic site they just don't let you explain NOTHING!!! But thanks for posting it.

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