10 April, 2007

Bob Jones University Starts "ThySpace" for Students

GREENVILLE, SOUTH CAROLINA

Life at Bob Jones University can seem "strict" to some. Girls are restricted from wearing pants on certain parts of the campus. All dates must be chaperoned by one of the college staff, and under no circumstances are couples allowed to touch. Violations of these rules are strictly enforced, and those who accumulate enough demerits during a school year face expulsion. But recently rules regarding internet access on campus have been reevaluated.

"We recognize that the internet is both a wonderful and a perilous thing." Said Dr. Bob Jones III, Chancellor of the University. "Every day there is something new out there, and while many of these things are worldly, there are, on occasion, good ideas."

One of the ideas that Jones appreciates is that of the popular website MySpace, in which people can post information about themselves such as likes, dislikes, pictures, etc. But given the nature of much of the content on MySpace the website is blocked by the campus' internet filtering software.

"I like the idea of MySpace," said Jones, "a place where our students can connect and learn about one another, but MySpace is a terrible website, filled with worldly and base things. We just cannot let our students have access to such a website without monitoring them, and checking up on everything they are writing and posting. But we have come up with our own system called ThySpace, which will allow our students to basically do the same thing."

ThySpace will be launched this fall at the beginning of the 2007-2008 academic year and will only be available and accessible to Bob Jones students on campus. Students will be able to customize there own home page and list their favorite classes at Bob Jones, their favorite Bob Jones III quote, their favorite Bob Jones choir music that they like to listen to, and their favorite food at the Bob Jones Dining Common. In addition, students may post pictures of themselves so long as they were taken on the campus of the university, and they may regularly blog about the things they have learned during Sunday AM services at the Founders' Memorial Apithorium.

"What this will do is increase our community." Said Jones. "You take a good idea, like MySpace, and you tweak it just a bit and you get what we have here with ThySpace."

The site will be free to use by all campus students, and will be monitored by the school's staff to avoid any inappropriate remarks being made. Furthermore, under no circumstances may students of the opposite sex add each other as friends.

"We're here to show the world that we at Bob Jones University can be old fashioned and yet use new things." Said Jones. "But we're not going to compromise though. We're here to stand in the gap and show the world how Christians should live."

12 comments:

Richard Boyce said...

So for a little background info, I'm a fundagelical baptist that holds to a general atonement. A Calvinian, or Armenist, if you will. I'm your all-around mixed breed.

Yes, I'm a majority text guy. Yes, I prefer the KJV, though I'm by no means a KJV-only guy.

That being said...I absolutely love your blog. While I don't agree with all of your opinions, you hit the nail on the head far more often than I might prefer to believe. The ePhod cracked me up, as did your NABS-only post. Please remember though, that not all fundamental Bible believers fall into the ruckmanite schema. Furthermore, not all IFB's are opposed to contemporary Christian music or think that women should under no circumstances wear pants. (Have I told you yet I'm a mixed breed?)

As to this post...again, hilarious. However...can you actually provide a Bible-based reason why they're wrong in their ideology? Yes, it's all opinion based, and their opinions are a little more conservative than mainstream Christianity. But is it actually wrong of them? Is it possible they're onto something?

Just some food for thought.

Anyways, keep up the satire. We all need a laugh these days. When you gonna do something on the PoMo emergents?

In Christ,

Richard

By the way, you are familiar with mypraize.com, right? Your idea didn't miss by far, lol.

Tominthebox News Network said...

Hi Richard,

Thanks for reading the blog and enjoying it, and thanks for the comments!

You asked the question "can you actually provide a Bible-based reason why they're wrong in their ideology?" That's a loaded question given that I've made some 65 posts to this blog picking on all kinds of people (You'll notice I pick on my own denomination too). I've covered a myriad of subjects, so I'll generalize my responses.

First of all I satirize certain IBFxers not so much for what they believe, but because they think everyone else is going to hell because they don't believe what they believe. For instance. Do I think it's wrong for someone to prefer the KJV? No. Do I think it's wrong (sinful) for someone to prefer the majority text? No. Do I think it's wrong or sinful for someone to think everyone who doesn't read the KJV is going to hell? Absolutely. I don't have to find a Bible-based accusation against such an ideology because there's no Bible-based support for such an ideology. It would be like me having to find a Biblical reason why there shouldn't be a Pope when there's no Biblical reason why there should in the first place.

Secondly, I do think there are specific unbiblical ideological problems with some of the people and/or institutions I address here. There are issues of binding one's conscience, lording it over the flock, easy-believism, etc. At schools like BJU and PCC students are encouraged to turn one another in if caught in a sin. There's something fundamentally wrong there in that Christ commands us to do otherwise. BJU put's local area churches on "black lists" for the most minute of reasons, causing undue divisiveness amongst the body.

So would it be wrong for BJU to start a page called "ThySpace?" No, it wouldn't necessarily, but it demonstrates and reflects the overall mindset of the institution, of legalism and control over their students.

So that's a very "nut shell" kind of answer. This blog of satire looks at the big picture not the subtle strokes. Yes, there are always exceptions (like yourself), but I'm addressing the status quo of a particular group or ideology.

I hope you keep reading and keep enjoying.

-Tom

Richard Boyce said...

Excellently stated, and I apologize if my questions came across as purposefully loaded.

A man at my church the other morning, while talking about the difference in the NIV and KJV, made (if I heard correctly) a comment about the NIV being translated by men.

I didn't have the heart to remind him that the KJV was too, lol.

I do appreciate you noting the difference about IBF-ers, and thanks for the feedback. Take care.

jenny said...

Bwahahahaha!

Ah, if only there had been Thyspace when I was out in the "dating" world in the 80's....NOT!

Thanks for the laugh.

victor said...

Tominthebox News Network said:
"Do I think it's wrong or sinful for someone to think everyone who doesn't read the KJV is going to hell? Absolutely."

I agree with you on that, I heard a preacher telling the congregation that no woman or girl will go to heaven if she wear pants. There is nothing wrong if a woman or a girl prefer not to wear pants at all, but if pastor and church makes it obligatory to all and sends all others to hell and go after those in congregation whom they saw wearing pants occasionally, that is WRONG. The same can be said about other things as well. Then Christian life becomes a life that follows after a long list of "do's" and "don't's."

pilgrim said...

Thanks for the laugh--it was hilarious--especially the picture from the site.
"Turn someone in" shows up twice.
Great stuff...

Anonymous said...

I can't believe that PCC didn't do this first! :)

As usual, excellent satire!

Rev. said...

Tuition at BJU per semester:
$12,375

Dormitory fee per semester:
$8,540

The "screen" of 'ThySpace' - PRICELESS!

Buddy Watts said...

I have not laughed that hard in a very long time! Great Stuff! I also appreciate boyce being able to laugh with all of us! This may be the attitude that we all need to have! This may be the "something" that unites the church. If we can admit that we don't have the answers and NO one has a corner on the market, we may be able to resemble what God intended us to be!

Candy Morhardt said...

As a Bob Jones graduate I would just like to clarify a few things. First, I find it highly unlikely that the girl pictured on the supposed "screen shot" from thyspace actually attends BJU or that "Turn someone in" would be listed twice - their media productions are much more classy than that. Also, have you actually ever seen the Bob Jones list of "black listed" churches? I think that there are 4 or 5 listed (and not for "petty" reasons, either) of how many hundreds of churches in the Greenville, SC area.
Something I think that people need to remember is that Bob Jones University is just that - it's a university. It's not a church or an association. It is a place that students choose to attend and place themselves under the rules and regulations for a specific time in their lives. In my four years at BJU I never once heard a professor or dean even suggest that girls should continue wearing panty hose every day for the rest of their lives, or that guys should put on a tie every morning in order to avoid going to hell - as you stated. But, they did give us self-discipline, professionalism, and a better jump start on adulthood than any state/public college that I am aware of.
Yes, we are aware that many of the rules are strict and may even seem ridiculous at times. I don't know of any 18 year old that wants to be told when to turn their light out at night. But you obey and learn and you're better off for it.
One last thought...Bob Jones University gets enough bad press and slander from the secular media - does it have to be ridiculed by fellow believers, too?

Tominthebox News Network said...

Hey Candy,

Thanks for taking time to read and comment. Let me respond succinctly.

1.) It's a joke. It's satire. It's meant to be funny by exaggerating. If you'll read the entirety of my blog you'll notice that I pick on everyone, even my own denomination (The Presbyterian Church in America)

2.) The article is intentionally exaggerated so that if someone reads it they will know it's a joke. I know Bob Jones would not put "turn someone in" on there twice. That's why I put it on there twice. But I do know that when my wife was there at the school that standard policy was to report people who you thought were breaking the rules. Someone turned her in once for using the phone in someone else's room. Something like that just begs to be poked fun at.

3.) I have not seen a recent list of blacklisted churches, but my wife told me about certain churches that were blacklisted when she was there, and some of the reasons were indeed very far out. I have family members that attend a church in Greenville that was blacklisted by BJU and I know the reason first-hand.

4.) BJU is, in-part, responsible for how it is perceived by the world. The university exists under public scrutiny, and the university has chosen over the years to establish and enforce rules the way it does. These rules and the way they're enforced are seen by the secular world as "extreme" and even by many in conservative Christianity as "over the top" and even downright unbiblical.

5.) As to BJU being ridiculed by fellow believers; tell me honestly that BJU is not guilty of the same thing! There are conservative Bible-Believing Christian churches on BJU's black list. I know this for a fact. Don't you think conservative Christianity has enough bad press and slander from the secular media - does it have to be black-listed by believers too?

jaustin said...

this is the most ridiculous thing i have ever read. why would you want to shelter someone from the world. these are adults that you are dealing with, not adolescent teenagers. you need to give them a chance to live their life and make their own choices. the things that don't kill us only make us stronger. if they are strong enough christians then they will live by what they were brought up on. give the students more lenience