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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 50161
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor
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My daughter has been punished by the school

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my daughter has been punished by the school for having looked (NOT during her school hours) into her teacher’s Facebook page (actually just one picture). The teacher said my daughter invaded her privacy and that her Facebook page was only for her friends and not for her pupils.
We are keen to understand if my daughter breached any rule/ code of conducts; we would like to know , in order for the FB page to be seen just by the friends’ of the account holder, whose responsibility is: is it of the account’s holder or by the person looking into the FB account holder’s page?
We will be soon have a meeting with the school's board and we need an official, fact/documented proven answer. Many thanks
Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. How did the teacher find out about this and was the photo on her public profile?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Hi Ben, thanks for coming back to me.
The teacher found out because one of the pupils told her " how would you feel if somebody was looking into your Facebook page'? The teacher reacted by asking who was doing that. He said that in December when he came over our house for a party, my daughter and other girls at the party, showed him the teacher Facebook page. The photo was on her public profile
Your daughter has not done anything illegal in this case. Whilst I cannot comment on whether she has breached any school rules (you ne to check the school policies for that), she has not broken any laws. First of all, in UK law there is no direct right to privacy. This means that there are no privacy laws which give someone the right to have general privacy over their life. There are various other laws which in one way or another give such rights in an indirect way but none would be relevant here. What has happened is that the teacher has placed a photo on a public site and as soon as she has done that, she has removed any rights to privacy she has. You cannot walk down the street naked and have a go at people for looking at you. In the same way, you cannot put a photo on one of the most popular public sites and expect there to be any privacy over it. If she wanted to retain privacy then it would have been entirely her responsibility to ensure that the privacy settings were such that this photo was only visible to her friends or a limited audience. If it was on her public profile then it is in the public domain and it is open for anyone, anywhere to access. There is absolutely nothing illegal about someone then going on to Facebook and searching for that person’s name and looking at any of the photos that are on their public profile. I reiterate again – if you want to keep something private then you do not place them on your public profile and if you do then they are open to anyone to view, completely legally. So whilst your daughter’s actions may be described as nosey, there is absolutely nothing unlawful about them and she has not breaches any rules, laws or regulations, unless the school can find something specific in their policies to show that. I hope this has answered your query. I would be grateful if you could please take a second to leave a positive rating (3, 4 or 5 stars) as that is an important part of our process and recognises the time I have spent assisting you. If you need me to clarify anything before you go - please get back to me on here and I will assist further as best as I can. Thank you
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