College 8212; the word ringing through every high schooler’s mind as he or she approaches the land of freedom and self-responsibility. Mark Zuckerberg mobilized this magical place to a virtual space called Facebook. The exclusive college website was used to create a network of college students who were all in a stage in which their independent minds could create, share and get to know one another.
Topics such as nightlife, news, friend requests and inside jokes with friends were given an online medium. Now leaving the bird’s nest and meeting with countless others who had done the same, students did not expect the incoming from mama-bird. Like a moldy strawberry past its age encroaching on the other perfectly ripe fruit, adults soured Facebook’s exclusivity and “coolness” factor.
Even more than that, as more started to join, the question of appropriate interaction was called out. Were younger people expected to monitor and tailor their profiles for the scrutiny of their parents and other authoritative individuals? If not, how were the adults supposed to respond to unwanted intimate information they normally would not have access to?
I am not suggesting that ties between generations should be severed. There is a time and place for everything, but it is not the older generation’s time and Facebook is not the place.
Some adults argue that it has brought them closer to their younger relatives. However, if Facebook is the only thing feeding these important relationships of parent-child, teacher-student and so on, there is something wrong.
A lot of the time, adults are brought down to kids’ level, losing their status and compromising their age. CNN pointed out some of these inappropriate interactions between teachers friending their students. The internet is changing so many things, but do professional and social standards have to be one of them?
Adults are climbing up the tree and into the club house and confusion has ensued as a result. Is the space’s sanctity deluded? A recent study shows that since this past year, Facebook use by adults ages 35-54 has increased by 328.1 percent and by 922.7 percent for those ages 55 and older.
It’s not that college kids want to hide a life of scandal, drugs and sex. They want the privacy to post as they please. Above all, it is the expression of free thought and interaction that is under attack as adults view and interpret youth while taking into consideration the responsibility of their role. Instead of waiting on the park bench, adults are on the jungle gym, falling in the cracks and ruining all the fun.
Sarah Greufe is a freshman journalism major from Ardmore, Okla.