Smartphones, Social Media and Be Very Careful Out There

Don’t become the subject of the next viral video. Ain’t nobody got time for that.

A fraternity from Indiana University was suspended today for sexual hazing after another very inappropriate incident involving college students made its way online.

According to the Indianapolis Star:

“Indiana University officials said in a statement Thursday morning that there appears to be “credible video evidence” supporting allegations that a fraternity encouraged a pledge to perform a sex act on a woman while other members watched.”

There is credible evidence – we’ve seen the video. We don’t see any proof in the video that the young men are actually members of the fraternity under review, but since they’ve been suspended, we assume that the school has all the info that they need.

If the fraternity members were cavorting with strippers and videotaping it, that is very bad. If senior fraternity members were in fact hazing the juniors – forcing them to commit acts as part of the pledging process – and taping it, that is worse.

What we want to point out here is twofold. First, the posting of the video appears to have been a hit job. Second, the speed at which posts can go viral is mind-boggling. When you combine the two, you have the kind of situation that can get out of hand in a hurry.

Why do we think an enemy of the fraternity posted the video? Well, it first showed up on Twitter as far as we can tell, and then on Reddit (it is on YouTube and other websites now, or was as of this morning).

The anonymous Twitter account that posted the video first (we think) exists solely it seems for the purpose of posting that video, as you can see below.

Indiana-ato

There are no posts before or since other than the retweet of the school’s announcement.

As far as the Reddit post goes, which was posted shorty after the video was posted to Twitter, the post has been locked (no new comments, votes etc.) and the poster’s account appears to have been deleted. The post garnered 2,924 upvotes and 1,641 comments before it was locked.

indiana-frat-video-reddit

If you’re a college student, don’t do anything you’ll regret if it shows up online. When there are smartphones around, which there always are these days, be doubly sure.

Social media has a way of amplifying bad behavior the likes of which we haven’t seen before. Reddit is the 11th most popular website in the country.

Irony alert: the tweet below was posted by the fraternity’s national Twitter account last month.

ATO-Twitter-frat

 

 

 

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