Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Please help .... I am worried :S

Hello Friends!

I just wrote 2 school tests (Bio and Maths) and I think I performed well. I am happy they're over but I gotta start preparing for my mocks taking place in March... still got time but there's a shit of a lot of other things to do at the same time... I will not bore you with my school work schedule but please bear in mind that I am being very busy these days at school….

Anyway, I am doing overall well. My busy life is probably helping me in having fewer moments of crisis, depression, self-hatred, etc… (which are very normal to happen to me while I am going through my confusion)

Regarding my confusion, there are very many ups and downs. One day I wake up happy about myself, another day I hate myself, people around me and society at large (lol). I understand that nothing too special is going on with me – I am meant to feel this way until I finally conquer it all (as my friend Josh would say), achieve self-acceptance, face society, and Rock the world!

On a side note, I just wanna share with you what's on my mind.
…I’ve been thinking of either deleting my blog or making it private...
(Please don’t slam at me yet)
I know it's very early and I just started blogging and all but I am a bit scared and worried…

Firstly I would like you to know that I am loving this blog land and blogging has been helping me a lot in getting over certain emotions, speaking up my mind with full honesty, and talking about things that otherwise I would have been keeping to myself only…

But I am kinda paranoid already. As I told you before, I am at a boarding school and here students access the same internet network and are subject to the school’s firewall. Hence, the school can literally track down my history and all that I do on my laptop (they can even go through my email inbox, which is only permitted in extreme cases such a violation, harm or so on)
I know that my school does not really have time to be stalking me per se, since students are many and the school cannot dedicate such time for ever single student. Plus, I am not doing any illegal stuff for them to find a reason to do so.

However, what’s worse than all that is the fact that the school’s server and network are more or less run by students (the geeky ones) who initiated this ICT support team and took the initiative to supervise and monitor the network.
This means that some students can actually access other students’ internet history and personal data. Although the school goes on and on about integrity which must be maintained by that ICT support team, I cannot really rely on them not to access my data by either curiosity or ill-will. So I am worried…

[some guys on that team dislike me (and I dislike them back as a result) so they might just be spying at me or trying to find any way to mess up with my life…]

It’s just so easy for any other student to find out about my blog; and once they do; they’d very easily tell that I am the author (my blog says a lot of personal details about me that someone who knows me in person can easily spot)… and then I’d be in hell! (you understand what I mean; you know my school’s type and whatnot)

So basically I don’t know what to do and what is best to do…
I wanna continue blogging but there is this privacy issue tormenting me… :(

I would love to hear your suggestions and advice…

Thanks in advance!

Best,
Sam

17 comments:

Tim in Italy said...

Bloody hell, man! Can't you come up with an ordinary problem once and a while??

So, you know that the first rule of blogging is that you blog for yourself. No one else. I just left a company that spied heavily on its employees, though such actions are illegal in the country in question. While there are several actions you can take to make it difficult to follow your machine, they'll just tip off anyone wanting to snoop around. I know that such worries can be extremely distracting.

Off topic somewhat, where in the hell is faculty oversight in the IT lab? Or are you attending school at Luft Stalag xvii?

Anyway, if you feel that the blog is helping you and you want to continue, then by all means, take it private. But be aware that if someone really wants to identify the owner of this private blog as either a student or faculty member at the school, they can probably do so. Whether they could trace it to you directly is another matter. I can't imagine that any faculty would sanction such a goose chase, but you know your school better than I do.

Regarding your comment about one day being up and the next being down, well, welcome to the human race.

Sam said...

Thank you Tim!
Well, I am not kidding when I say my life is complex... lol

There IS faculty oversight in the IT department but my school likes to see students initiatives and demonstration of leadership, bleh!
My school is a bit similar to Luft Stalag XVII, so to speak. It's really like a jail since I am on campus 24/7 and not allowed outside (unless for church or the mall trip which happens once in a blue moon)

On a side note; how do you find my blog in general. Let's say someone I know in person (a fellow student for example) comes across it. What might they think? is it vulgar at all, weird, or so?

(please ignore my ignorance)

Thanks again!
Sam

Tim in Italy said...

No, I don't think it's vulgar or in any way something to be ashamed of. Also, it's surprising how exposed you probably feel and yet anyone stumbling on the blog would, I think, be hard pressed to make a positive ID. Things are not as black and white as they seem.

Sam said...

Grazie!!
:)

Scottie said...

I think you are right in that this is a problem. After reading this and remembering my senior year at a boarding school ( before internet) I would recommend making it private and letting your current friends in. You could start a g rated blog about other parts of your life that =you would share with anyone. Then if some one wanted to know you better and you were comfortable with that, you could allow them to your private blog. Also you just have the one private blog and let your friends you have on this one recommend new people.

Trust me, computer tech's will snoop. Been one since my Army days and we all have.

What is the position on being gay in your school. I was almost thrown out of mine because of a rumor that got started. I did not care and so let it go, the dean heard about it and being gay was an expellable offence. That is something to think about.

You only have a few more months and then you could open the blog back up as you choose. Remember in life you do have to make compromises and will as long as you live. If you choose to be open you take the good and bad, if you choose to take a loan you make the payments, so if you want to stay in the closet for now, you have to make the sacrifice.

Sorry this got long, if you want you can email me. As for your being up and down, yes welcome to being human. Right now your body, world, school, home and everything is in flux, so your emotions are also.

Hugs to you and wish you the best.
Scottie

Sam said...

Thank you Scottie!

My school is an international one, so they claim that they're open-minded and understanding... but the student body is such a narrow-minded bunch...
I wouldn't care how they'd react - its not like I'd be expelled or so - but I am only worried about having to deal with this crap at this time of the year (mocks, official exams and graduation...)

I think you're right; I gotta do this sacrifice somehow... But I don't know exactly how to make those invites when I turn the blog private. I will explore...
Please lemme know if u know how to do that

Cheers!
Sam

Scottie said...

I know someone who does I will ask him.

alex said...

Between the peaks of joy and the cliffs of despair, if that sounds very human. :)
It's funny how many schools operate as enlightened despotism which aims to teach knowledge to question and break down barriers but at the same time, the authority is unquestionable.
Continue to blog or not depends on the reason why you opened it, and if the blog meets it, you should weigh the benefit against the risk and make your desicion. In any case if you decide to make it private hope to earn an invitation.
;)

B said...

First, congrats on your tests...

Second, I understand you completely about "one day hating yourself, one day loving yourself"... It's normal thing to go through in your accepting of who you are, and I successfully passed that period. And if you wish to talk about it (while it's still fresh for me :P) add me on MSN and I will tell you my path... :)

Third... About the blog, there is no better person to advice you about paranoia than me :P

First, I wouldn't recommend you to make the blog private, cause it won't draw more visitors to the blog, and it will be more restricted, which is at least for me, not so good. I would risk it and let it be like this (public)...

But, I understand your problem better than you think. The boarding school is really big deal. And this "subject to the school’s firewall" is really serious to make you paranoid. Believe me, sometimes I even caught myself thinking about network provider seeing my history (and that's really sick paranoia XP, like they have time to go through all millions and millions users)...

My advice is to leave blog like this (public) and try to surf from some "safe" place, I mean, try to find some Wi-Fi spot in the city or even use dial-up (it's old, but can be very anonymous) and only to post some post or read some blogs...

or... you should reduce your private details, like I did (but now I tend to publish more and to open myself to the world), but in your case it's important to somehow "hide" yourself...

And now I realised that you didn't told us how are you connecting at the Internet? Cause I know a bit about websites and IP and such stuff...

So for example, if the network is really controlled by some freaks who doesn't have anything smarter to do, they can easily see what were you typing, cause when you press send or publish, the letters which you typed on your keyboard needs to be sent at the internet and even if it is "private", while sending and while it's writing, it is viewable :D

So the best option is some "safe" place... But now I need to ask you in which environment are you living?

Sam said...

Thank you Mr. B!
Well, I cannot really folllow the advice of blogging from a "Safe" place.
I use the internet (Wi-Fi) provided by my school, campus-wide. And I stay on campus ALL THE TIME! (literally) so I do not have any access to alternative sources of internet.

so as you said, no matter how private I try to make my blog; they'd still be able to view what I write and then publish (if they have nothing better to do)

Basically, I am not worried about my school (faculty, Dean, whoever) but rather about certain students... one of them has been giving me this evil look lately and I cant help it; all I think of is: "O-OH! He's reading my blog" :(

I'll just add you on gmail from:
confusedyethonest@gmail.com

Best!
Sam

B. said...

LOL, don't call me Mr :) I'm only 1 year older than you. :D

Well, then try the other one, try to reduce your details about school, your classes and write about people, use fake names and everything will be safe...

Scottie said...

Hello Sam. I did some asking and going private may not work for you. Only you can tell. Here is what I found out. When you make the blog private, people have to sign up for a user name. Then you put that name on a list of approved visitors. My understanding is the first so many are free, after that to have unlimited private viewers can run from 20 to 30 dollars.

I think it is worth it if you want total security, but only you can decided if the the changes are worth it. You have to weight what would happen to you if found out, what benefits to being found out, loss of the visitors like my self who simply followed a link from another site.

If you were harassed would your folks back you, would the staff help you?

Good luck, it is a hard choice and I bet you go back and forth on your thinking of what to do.

Best wishes.
Scottie

Sam said...

@ B:
Thank you "B", I guess I'll follow this advice, then... But sometimes I cannot help it so I just end up writing everything and anything about my life on here lol...
it needs practice, I guess

PS: it's not like I am gonna delete all the detailed posts I have already made... so my people would still find out about me if they'd come across my blog and read my previous entries
whatever... (grr!)


@ Scottie:
Thanks Scottie for finding that out for me. I am not that worried about harassment because if I don't care about someone, then I also don't care about what they think or say about me. As I said once in a post; people can somehow easily tell whether I like them or not and if I don't then tough luck; I never will. So I kinda ignore them, as if they're not present at all in my life (a bit rude, I know but that's how I am)

And people wouldn't harass me per se. They'd probably only give me those stupid looks or gossip about me... They're jealous in me in real life (people tend to think that I have a perfect life)
What I am most worried about is my image. I really work on my image and try as much as possible to be the best I can (oh, am I contradicting myself???)
Ouch, I see, I do care about what people think of me!! :S

Anyway; I don't know what to think or rather how to think about this issue...

(By the way; my good friends and staff would back me up.)

Ok, bottom line:
I just don't want anyone I know in person to find out about my blog.
(I am sure that's how almost ALL bloggers feel...)
Privacy is key; that's kinda why I blogged in the first place:
To have a space where I can share my private thoughts and intimate feelings, right?

bleh... I talk too much so I'll stop now.
Thanks though!

Sam

Manu said...

Hi! Sam,I know that you've been told this like a zillion times, but we do understand you.
I was so afraid to make a blog cause I was thinking "what if anyone who knows me end up here and find out who I'am" and all that.
I'm still worried, that's what I try to make my posts as discreet as possible.
About the depression, self-hatred thing is normal, sometimes I just wake up without any will to get out of bed, asking my self why should I? if my life is so hard, and how much I hate my self for being like this, and just wanting to die, really sometimes I have thoughts that scare me.
But then I find the strenght to go on, and be happy while I can. I don't know if you believe in God, but I do, and I always tell my self, if God loves me the way I am, why should I hate me?
And I don't know you or anything but I believe if you had the courage to start blogging then don't be affraid, you're already a step ahead, so don't go back. And if you find internal peace blogging then don't let those fears overwhelme you, and enjoy!
Sometimes life is not the party we wish but as long as we are here we have to dance :)

Sam said...

Thank you very much Manu for your words... it really means a lot for me to know that I am not alone in this... that's why I enjoy blogging and love my fellow bloggers...

I do believe in God; I guess that was something I forgot to mention amongst facts about me lol
God loves me and He loves you...
we shall always remember this, especially in moments of crisis....

My advisor also kept on telling me "Don't ever go back" as I was discussing my confusion with him last time... I'll try hard not to go back, I promise!


Bestest!
Sam

CoolCharlie said...

Hi Sam, I just read your post. ‘Please help...'

It gave me a tear in my eye. I could have written this, everything is me. The paranoia, the on-campus situation, the firewall, the ITC crowd, their even called ITC here too, and the open policy, fuck!

They even publish our internet history to records, in case we do anything illegal, and they post our top 10 sites on line, for our own use... yeah right!

I even get the ups and downs and how many of our followers, (love them all), don’t realise there is no place to hide at college plus the study and image comment; One day my friend, guys like us, who are the best for a reason; will excel in the world and they will wonder in amazement, and wish they had supported and understood us more.

I have been working on how to protect my connection, at least from the laptop through the firewall, to the outside. What can I say I'm a nerd? lol. I won’t say it here but will email you. But it won't change the content.

So much of me is in my blog, like you are in yours. Almost all here could ID me, in like 10 minutes, and at present I think someone has, and it's not my friends I worry about; even the narrow minded ones. lol

We have to stick together and stick at this blogging. I am falling for the adage: what’s good for us makes us stronger.

Your friend,

Charlie

Sam said...

Charlie, it's like you're describing my school's ICT system... they also post our top 10 visited sites...

My former teacher advised me to keep blogging and encouraged me to try not to care if anyone finds out about my blog. It's actually them to be laughed at for having the time to spy on others... I am being myself on my blog and I don't care... I am trying to keep reminding myself about this.

I am dead sure we will excel and show the entire world what we're capable of, and what they, themselves, cannot achieve at all!

We shall stick together and to blogging... I am there for you too, my friend! We're strong enough!

(email me when you can about how you're protecting your connection, if possible. I am very non ICT savvy)

Love and Peace,
your friend Sam