On Sunday night, I received a text from my friend who attends the University of Alabama. She was locked in her sorority house.
“Have you seen what’s been going on?” she asked frantically. “Everyone in Tuscaloosa is freaking out.”
She was referring to threats and rumors that had been circulating across campus and on social media. It was started online by a commenter who was angry about the mistreatment of minorities in Alabama’s Greek life:
Threat sent towards University of Alabama Greek Life pic.twitter.com/SQPfUKsT4y
— Atlanta Sports Guy (@Atlantasportguy) September 22, 2014
The potential threat resulted in Tutwiler Hall, a predominantly Greek girls’ dorm, going on lockdown for nearly an hour. The rumors were pretty outlandish, from guys with weapons in masks getting arrested to students getting strangled. They were spreading like wildfire, though, and with no one to confirm that the rumors weren’t true, most girls in Tuscaloosa were scared shitless for a couple hours.
Police eventually lifted the lockdown around midnight. They cited the reason for it wasn’t based on any tangible evidence, but because of reports coming from social media. Basically, a game of telephone escalated into some kind of psychotic, campus-wide attack that nobody had actually seen but was willing to spread without second-guessing the origin.
The response from the school angered a number of students, which you can read about here.
Fast-forward to today in Athens, Ga., where girls in sororities at UGA have become targets of strange, anonymous text messages. Here is an example of the weird shit getting sent around, personal information redacted for obvious reasons:
So before you ignore me and tell someone I am messaging you you might want to know I know who you are.
[Girl’s name, address, parent’s names, and car license plate number.]
I think you should message back.
One sorority promptly emailed all of its members, warning them about what was going on:
This isn’t even the first safety concern for Georgia students in the last seven days. On Friday, a UGA student was arrested for making terroristic threats on Yik Yak, that stupid app that was popular for, like, two months last spring. The elevated threat levels at these schools may have resulted in increased security at other major state universities.
Cool down, SEC. This crazy shit is getting to be too much..
Image via Twitter