Fed up with a dangerous hazing culture, a group of Thai university students decided to step up activism against it by creating a Facebook page where people can report on and post photos demonstrating inappropriate behavior. The Anti-SOTUS page now has 11,000 members from across the country, and since the start of the school year this month, some of them have already posted evidence, including photos “in which scores of freshmen are shown lying down in what is identified as waste water.”
What’s the Big Idea?
The group’s name literally means it’s against the code (seniority, order, tradition, unity, and spirit) used by generations of university students to intimidate and exploit freshmen. Last year, injuries and deaths resulting from hazing led the Thai Education Ministry to ban smoking and drinking during freshman orientation, and another government agency issued policy guidelines to help make orientation safe for everyone. Not surprisingly, hazing is still done behind closed doors, and some of the policy changes have met with resistance. However, the Anti-SOTUS page is creating some much-needed public discussion surrounding the practice.
Nippon Television Network is working with other organizations to provide elder-care monitoring services that will, for example, alert relatives if a family member doesn’t change their channel for an extended period of time.