School fight website ‘fans violence’, says department

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The Department of Basic Education has condemned “in the strongest possible terms” a website and Facebook page that posts violent videos of school fights.

The website, which went live on May 6, was down yesterday afternoon. However, users were urged to send their e-mail address and details to the administrator, who would “let them now when the site is up and running again”.

The Facebook page linked to the site states that the administrator would pay for videos of school children fighting. “Please note that we are unable to pay for fight videos involving minors,” it states on the page.

In a statement, the department said it viewed the website as vulgar glorification of violence. “It is especially unfortunate considering the challenges faced around violence in schools, as well as the prevalence of bullying.

“Through this website and the Facebook page linked to it, pupils are being incentivised to commit violent acts and encouraged … to submit content. This is unacceptable and should be condemned in the strongest possible terms,” departmental spokesperson Troy Martens said.

Facebook users have criticised the page. It was still online yesterday afternoon.

The Facebook page offers vi-deos with titles such as “you won’t believe how close these schoolboys come to killing each other”,and “nothing gets a guy as angry as messing with his girlfriend”.

The administrator (who has not been identified) yesterday posted that the website was down “due to overwhelming interest”.

“Let me put things into perspective… I want to take fight vi-deos and index them for my own enjoyment. If you have a problem with it, try shut down the Internet … I dare you,” he posted.

Martens said they would open a case with the cybercrime unit and urged parents to be vigilant.

Police spokesperson Colonel Vishu Naidoo said the police were looking into the matter.

Violence was a problem in schools, Martens added. The department is doing its utmost to address it. “This website and page promote violence”.

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