UT students and officers react to controversial tweets

A Twitter account has the attention of several thousand followers, but it has also raised concerns among leaders at the university and those keeping an eye on the risky behaviors of some young people.

The Twitter account appears to focus on the University of Tennessee.

This account sent out its first tweet on December 2, 2012. Since then it has accumulated hundreds of photos of young adults in compromising situations involving alcohol, and sometimes drugs.

Thousands of people follow it, but what does this mean for the people in the photos, and the university?

College is a time for learning, advancing your career, and for some, having a little bit of fun in the meantime. University of Tennessee students say that @VolBlackout's Twitter page gives a funny yet dangerous look at the party side of school.

UTPD is aware of the Twitter page but unable to take any action. Lieutenant Mike Richardson said it is difficult to pinpoint its origin.

He said it is also difficult to tell if the pictures are staged or real, or even tell the identity of most of the people in them. They also cannot tell if these people photographed are actually students of the university.

"Just think about the decisions you make as a young person. It's something that could stay with you throughout your life. So be aware and think about the decisions you make," said Richardson.

The Twitter page asks followers to send in pictures of "blackout friends" and they will post them anonymously.

According to Heather Sutton with the Metropolitan Drug Commission, these kind of pages promote situations that could put students in danger.

"Sites like this promote extreme drinking as a norm and something to be laughed at, but the fact of the matter is, it is fun to go out and have a few drinks with your friends; it's a whole different subject when you are blacking out and passing out. It's very dangerous," said Sutton.

Lt. Richardson said he has seen things like this before and they typically fade out.


To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the
Conversation Guidelines and FAQs

Leave a Comment