Some websites are completely blocked on Troy University’s campus, but there are some websites that are blocked only on certain areas of campus, leaving students wondering why they can’t catch an episode of a Netflix show between classes.
Information Technology (IT) said some websites, such as Netflix, used to be unblocked, but this site was taken away from the academic and administrative networks so students would not be distracted. Teachers are also not allowed to use Netflix unless they have permission from their departments, and they are allowed only to show documentaries.
Susan Sarapin, an associate journalism professor, said the lack of some websites is all about the amount of data some websites produce.
“Some sites hold onto a lot of data that creates bandwidth,” Sarapin said. “The more data being used, the more the school has to pay on the expenses.”
Video or music streaming websites such as Netflix, Spotify, Hulu or Amazon Prime Video eat significant amounts of data, and the strain on the network could cause a crash.
Some students also mentioned gaming sites and messaging programs being unable to work on certain Wi-Fi networks.
Students reported Steam, Twitch, Discord and some gaming consoles having trouble everywhere but inside dorms.
While having these firewalls can increase student productivity in class, it could inconvenience those who may not have time to go back to a dorm or would like to relax between classes.
Sarah Bradley, a sophomore social work major from Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, said students should have the responsibility to get what they pay for in college.
“If I’m going into debt to go to this school, I should be able to watch TV when I want,” Bradley said.
Scarlett Crouch, a senior chemistry major from Silverhill, agreed that because they are paying to attend college, individual students should be responsible to not neglect responsibilities.
“In high school I could get it, but we’re paying to be here,” Crouch said. “If a student wants to fail and pay the school even more money for watching shows, shouldn’t that be on them to make the bigger decision?”
Kayle Knight, a senior graphic design major from Troy, said she understands why some websites may need to be blocked.
“These blocks protect the servers from being infiltrated by malware and other viruses that could corrupt the system,” Knight said. “However, there have been many times in my career at Troy where these blocks have prevented me from completing certain projects or learning extra skills on my spare time.”
If a student experiences problems with Wi-Fi, they can submit a helpdesk ticket to IT at www.helpdesk.troy.edu.