When I was asked to cover this story, I thought, oh boy this is going to be boring. I get to hear some lawyer talk about stuff I should not be doing in college. To my surprise, it was really enjoyable. C.L. Lindsay is probably one of the funniest lawyers I have ever met. I wish that more people had taken the opportunity to come hear him speak. The topics he spoke about were ones that every college student should know about. I think the information presented could even apply to high school students.
C.L. Lindsay is originally from Philadelphia; he moved back in with his dad after he quit his “big shot” lawyer job at 27 years old. He is now working at a non-profit organization as an attorney that represents college students. He stated that the law firm receives 10,000 requests from students per year, and there are about 500 attorneys that work to help these students.
Lindsay says, the number one rule that college students should know, as well as everyone else, is if you would not do something in person, do not do it online. Obviously, we all know it is not very smart to put pictures of yourself, or anyone else, on Facebook showing everyone what you did on your drunken Friday nights. We have also all heard, probably a million times, that it is something future employers look at. He showed us pictures he had taken off Facebook of drunk and high people. It is amazing what some people will put on Facebook. Yes, some of these pictures were quite hilarious, but they made the people look like idiots. There was even a picture of someone holding a bag of weed. I am sure their family would be proud to see that on Facebook.
Lindsay started to talk about cheating. Ethically, most of us think it is wrong, but there is a significant amount of students doing this. Around 60-70% of students admit to cheating and 70% say that it is nothing serious. I was shocked! I thought maybe 30% would think it was wrong; that is not the case here. People, cheating is wrong! Lindsay said that people actually go on sites and buy prewritten papers. There is actually a site called www.nonplagiarizedcollegetermpapers.com. He says, do not fall for that! These sites are based out of foreign countries, and they will charge your credit card as many times as they want. They will also ask you to tell them what school you go to. If you go to your credit card company to have these charges stopped, the paper writing company will threaten to contact your school. Let us face the facts, everyone has their own distinct writing style, and your teachers will find out eventually that it is not you writing the papers. He said that he has read thousands of papers purchased from the sites and they are at best D or F papers.
Lindsay also spoke about sexting. He says, before you hit send, take some time to think about the fact that your picture will probably be seen by more than the person you are sending it to. In a recently conducted poll, 20% of teens said that they had sent nude or semi-nude pictures to someone. About 25% of girls and 33% of boys have received nude pictures; this fact is not really surprising. Lindsay said this is a serious problem. Sexting can turn into something called sextortion, which is getting a naked picture and using it as black mail against someone. Before hitting send, think about the recipient’s reaction, not only now, but later as well. A lot of awful things can come out of your decision to send or forward a picture. Lindsay told us some true stories of people that got severely hurt by this, and some of them even took their life from the bullying they experienced after they were basically blackmailed.
Lindsay stated that we need to be smart about what we do. Every time you are doing something on the internet, or at a party, make sure you think about the consequences that your actions can cause.