Fraternity's Facebook Posts Cause Suspension

Penn-state-fraternityPenn State fraternity Kappa Delta Rho has been suspended and may face criminal charges because of Facebook photos. The images, posted to two "secret" pages, showed women who are nude, unconscious, or in other compromised states. Other photos revealed drug sales and hazing.

A cease-and-desist letter from the university's Interfraternity Council explains the decision:

"This action is being taken in response to the chapter hosting two private Facebook pages where highly inappropriate photographs were posted of activities, events, and comments that are in direct violation of the standards and values of a recognized student organization and/or fraternity at Penn State University. The State College Police have shared copies of photographs and communication that were posted on these Facebook pages with the Office of Student Conduct, the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life, and the Interfraternity Council."

A statement from the university similarly condemns the action and explains the investigation.  

A New York Times article portrays student sentiment: "Students on this campus of about 47,000 were dismayed but unsurprised by the episode."

The incident brings new questions about how the University handles sex crimes. In 2011, football coach Jerry Sandusky was arrested for abusing boys while school officials, including famed coach Joe Paterno, kept silent.

Image source.

Discussion Starters:

  • Consider Facebook's "Community Standards," updated just this week. Which are violated by the fraternity? 
  • Assess the University's and Interfraternity Council's statements. Consider the main points, tone, organization, and so on. 
  • Do you find the Sandusky situation relevant? Why or why not?