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Phoebus Cotsapas has published 11 articles

Trinity College restrict students’ access to porn websites

College cite security software updates, and say they take 'no moral stance at all on internet pornography'
Phoebus Cotsapas on Thursday 1st March 2012
Photograph: Becky Nye

A security software upgrade has blocked students at Trinity College from a number of pornographic websites.

The updates, which came into effect last Tuesday, are intended to reduce the amount of viruses acquired by computers on the college network.

Estates Bursar Kevin Knott told Cherwell, “There used to be one or two cases of infections every week. We have therefore proceeded to restrict access to websites identified as likely sources of infection.”

He insisted that the college did not intend to target pornographic websites specifically, saying, “We take no moral stance at all on internet pornography.”

JCR President Beatrice Graham defended the college’s decision to tighten internet security, explaining, “The pornographic sites were not the intended target of the new security settings. We've had a lot of recent problems with the college system becoming virus ridden and it was not realised that the change put in place to combat that would have this effect.”

She added, “I have had it confirmed by College that it is in no way a judgement on the sites themselves or individuals who use them. They are particularly concerned because we're seeing instances of sites with academic sexual content, Baudelaire poetry for example, being blocked. Hopefully we'll resolve the problem soon.”

Despite efforts to loosen the restrictions, some students have continued to express frustration at the situation.

Chris Holcroft, one of the Men’s Welfare officers, told Cherwell, “The blocking of pornographic sites has gone on for 3 or so days. Students have had no notification as to why they are being blocked. I am following various routes to get to the bottom of the problem as we see it as not only a men's welfare issue, though of course this is not solely a men's welfare issue, but also a matter of principle.”

Economics and Management student Tom Bosley commented, “It's the timing of it that I find most appalling. With the Classicists struggling through mods they need instant access to good quality, hardcore pornography so they can get themselves off and get on with their day.”

A security software upgrade has
blocked students at Trinity College
from a number of pornographic
websites.
The updates, which came into
effect last Tuesday, are intended
to reduce the amount of viruses
acquired by computers on the
college network.
Estates Bursar Kevin Knott told
Cherwell, “There used to be one or
two cases of infections every week.
We have therefore proceeded to
restrict access to websites identified
as likely sources of infection.”
He insisted that the college did
not intend to target pornographic
websites specifically, saying, “We
take no moral stance at all on
internet pornography.”
JCR President Beatrice Graham
defended the college’s decision
to tighten internet security,
explaining, “The pornographic sites
were not the intended target of the
new security settings. We've had a lot
of recent problems with the college
system becoming virus ridden and it
was not realised that the change put
in place to combat that would have
this effect.”
She added, “I have had it confirmed
by College that it is in no way a
judgement on the sites themselves
or individuals who use them. They
are particularly concerned because
we're seeing instances of sites with
academic sexual content, Baudelaire
poetry for example, being blocked.
Hopefully we'll resolve the problem
soon.”
Despite efforts to loosen the
restrictions, some students have
continued to express frustration at
the situation.
Chris Holcroft, one of the Men’s
Welfare officers, told Cherwell,
“The blocking of pornographic
sites has gone on for 3 or so days.
Students have had no notification
as to why they are being blocked. I
am following various routes to get
to the bottom of the problem as we
see it as not only a men's welfare
issue, though of course this is not
solely a men's welfare issue, but also
a matter of principle.”
Economics and Management
student Tom Bosley commented,
“It's the timing of it that I find most
appalling. With the Classicists
struggling through mods they
need instant access to good quality,
hardcore pornography so they can
get themselves off and get on with
their day.”

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