Mass spam student emails receive cease and desist notice

Molly Liebergall, Web News Editor

At 10:04 a.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 15, an unknown student used the school gmail account to send an email to the whole student body and faculty.  The message was sent by a student who used Tristan Zauls ’16 school account, and it read, “sup. swiggity swooty I’m comin fo dat booty.”

Zauls’ email was only the beginning.

“Once he had sent it, I guessed from experience that the APs would get involved and that other students were going to start sending [emails] out in reply,” Zauls said.  He guessed correctly, because one minute after the first mass-email, another was sent, and a frenzy of mass spam student emails began.

For about two hours following the first email, nine more emails were sent.  “The chain reaction isn’t surprising; It’s actually a great example of mob mentality and of how the bandwagon gives them a feeling of anonymity,” Zauls said.

Assistant Principal Karyn Morgan quickly addressed the situation with an announcement email subjected, “Cease and desist.”  The email consisted of one concise sentence: “Any student who continues to send mass emails will be in violation of the Acceptable Use Agreement and subject to consequences.”

The Acceptable Use Agreement requires that students “use the electronic resources, including storage space, only for educational purposes related to work in Westport schools.”  All Staples students and faculty were informed via Morgan’s email that this code had been violated; however, two more students dared to challenge the policy several hours after her announcement.

Defying school policy was not the intention behind the sent mass-emails, however.  “It’s a rare opportunity to share a fun experience with the whole school,” Marcel Massarani ’16 said.  One of the mass-emails was sent from his account, and Massarani later said that even though another student had sent it, he, “probably would have sent a response…although it would [have been] a little less…racy.”

The last mass-email was sent out at 9:40 p.m. by a student who only wanted to say “hi” to the student body.  No more emails have been sent since.