Photo from Wikipedia

Photo from Wikipedia

Mary Kimball, Editor

As I walked through the doors of The Point on Monday morning I heard the familiar ringtone that indicated I received a new snapchat.  

I opened my phone to find a snapchat from my friend who lives on the east coast.  Eager to hear from them I tried to load the snap so I could open it.  I tapped it, Failed to load, I tried again, Failed to load.  That’s weird I thought to myself, I turned my phone off then on again to see if that would do the trick.  Nope.  

I looked around and found my friend, Kylie Watton.  “Is your phone working?” I promptly asked after a brief hello.  “No I can’t send anything to anyone,” she sighed.  “Hmm, I wonder what it is,” I contemplated.  

Turns out that nobody could get their phones to work.  A rumor quickly started to spread that the school WIFI blocked the use of snapchat from anyone that was connected to it.  I went to the settings on my phone to turn off my WIFI and my phone changed to a very slow 3G connection.  I watched the circle on the top of my screen spin and spin and nothing happened.  

This is crazy — did the school actually block us from using snapchat?  I was angry at first, but then i realized how smart this move would have been.  The battle of teachers vs. phones has been raging ever since the invention of the Iphone.  Snapchat has been a major player, keeping students distracted for hours.  I know for me personally when your phone buzzes in your pocket it is irresistible.  So for the school to make this app unavailable to kids during the school day would increase the attention of students in every class.

Kids quickly found a solution to this problem and it spread like wildfire.  I myself don’t know how anyone knew how to adjust the WIFI coding to allow previously blocked things to pass through the server, but they figured it out and before the 2nd period bell rang my phone was working again.  Others found an app that sets up a VPN and this makes the WIFI function properly again.  Now all we could do was wait until the teachers had an answer for our counter attack.

Fortunately for us the school administration did not have an explanation for why the school WIFI was not working.  They believe the district WIFI was updated blocking many things, including our very own school website.  Many people including David English and Curt Nelson, school and district IT respectively are actively working to get to the bottom of what really happened and how to fix it.  I hope soon we will be able to use our phones freely again, or do I?