Remember the good old days?
School classes are disrupted by passing physical notes.
Bullying was mostly confined to the playground during recess and walking to and from school.
And bullies had to face their victims to inflict pain.
That was before the world heard of Mark Zuckerberg and his friends.
They parrot the same self-serving mantras.
Social media and the internet make the world a better place.
Social media and the internet bring us closer together.
Social media and internet reduce hate, racism.
Social media and the Internet accelerate the absorption of knowledge and plant the seeds of insight.
Social media cures acne.
Nothing, nothing, nothing. . .
This is why they argue that mass destruction of societal norms should be allowed without question or regulation.
And – to top it all off – they make everyone enthusiastic about how it has nothing to do with money.
Of course, they do that only after they accumulate enough money to crush or buy the competition.
And who says Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates and their ilk weren’t old school?
It’s the playbook that Andrew Carnegie, the Rockefellers, and the rest of their robber baron cronies wrote to “give away” their wealth after basically being given a government license to destroy other businesses.
The tide may be turning.
Last month, California and Colorado took the lead in a 33-state lawsuit against Zuckerberg and his creation Meta.
Notably, technological versions of Frankenstein as well as Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde Zuckerberg have grown in the form of Facebook and Instagram.
The lawsuit alleges that Meta “designed psychologically ambiguous product features to induce compulsive and prolonged use by young users” of platforms such as Instagram.
It also argues that the company’s algorithms are designed to push children and teens “down the rabbit hole of toxic and harmful content,” such as “endless scrolling” and constant alerts used to hook young users.
There are other differences also mentioned in the lawsuit.
Among them is the argument that Meta systematically violated the federal Children’s Online Privacy Act by unlawfully collecting “personal data of minor users” without their parents’ consent.
“Meta,” says the language in the indictment, “used powerful and unprecedented technologies to lure, engage, and ultimately entrap youth and teenagers.” The purpose is profit.
Meta uses the tobacco industry’s Joe Camel defense.
They were not knowingly targeting children.
The rise of social media isn’t exactly breaking news.
That being said, the slow train that is forcing young people down the rabbit hole of closings is becoming evident in many school districts.
Manteca’s confederation – like all districts – has issues.
The use of cell phones in the classroom is at the discretion of the teachers.
The district has blocked social media on district Wi-Fi.
There are still problems.
This is not up to par in some school districts.
Orange County Public Schools in Florida is the nation’s eighth largest school system;
The district’s teachers noted that during the outbreak, large numbers of students were more immersed in smartphones and unable to attend in-person learning.
*Students do not make eye contact when walking down the school corridor.
*Some were secretly videotaping others during class and posting them on social media apps.
*Young people were texting each other to arrange to meet in the bathrooms to make dance videos in the classroom.
* Faculty were dealing more with cases of bullying by students posting, or trying to record, things that happened during class.
In other words, the obsession with social media during school was undermining the effort to educate students.
Telephone use is prohibited in the classroom.
But it wasn’t enough.
Students were still using their smartphones during recess, lunch and between classes to threaten other students.
In response to the continued bullying, Orange County banned students from using cell phones for the entire school day, from the time they enter campus until the time they leave.
More than 100 phones were taken on the first day.
After that, he took the smart phones from the vandals and locked them in the office until the end of the school year.
Based on feedback from teachers and educators:
*Telephone-related student violence is down.
* Students are more engaged in class.
*Reduced classroom distractions.
* Eye contact between teachers and students increased as young people could not bury their faces in the phone.
*During lunch, students are socializing, playing pickup ball, or chatting instead of being glued to their phones.
There are perceived weaknesses.
Some students said they felt unsafe not being able to immediately text a parent if they needed help or had a safety issue.
They also found it difficult to talk to parents about driving arrangements and the like.
The district notes that if a student wants to use the phone to reach a parent, they can do what has been done for generations — go to the office, then call them. The only twist is they have to ask permission to use their own phone.
Also, students don’t have to worry about the increased monitoring to enforce the ban.
In Orange County schools, it includes a security officer who regularly monitors security camera feeds for students using cellphones in hallways and other areas.
Repeat offenders may be banned.
Students say that there are negative aspects that affect their studies.
They can no longer check their class schedules at school or take pictures of their art class projects using their personal phones.
That means students in districts that offer the tools can use them to do just that.
The Orange County schools’ ban — and others like it — will likely have limited success in upending the academic and social norms of a generation raised on smartphones.
But California and 32 other states have an unwritten business plan that could be a huge success, with social media companies getting students addicted to their devices for the same reason that tobacco companies do with smoking — even more profit to line their pockets.