Facebook page sparks controversy at the UW-L - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

Facebook page sparks controversy at the UW-L

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LA CROSSE, Wisconsin (WXOW)—"UW-L Confessions", a Facebook page with more than 3000 likes, allows anyone to anonymously share stories, most have to do with sex and drinking.

But when the site posted a picture of a female, who appears passed out on the floor, just days after the death of a UW-L student, Chancellor Joe Gow took notice.

"It's a terrible thing when you have a student pass away and we did last weekend and there was excessive drinking involved in her death and so when I see a photo of a women lying face-down, passed out on the floor, that's presented as comedy, that's a little disturbing," Gow said.

So Gow sent an email to the campus community, expressing his concern and disappointment.

"What I hoped was that people behind the page would see my message, hear from other people, and say yeah, this is not a good thing and they would change their photo," Gow said.

Maggie Ramirez, a freshman at the UW-L, says she found most of the posts on the page funny but not the picture.

"When I first saw that, I actually did think that was kind of upsetting," Ramirez said. "I mean first of all, we don't know who that girl is and a lot of people put rude comments."

The confessions page was removed by Facebook administrators, but it didn't take long for copycat pages to emerge. Including "UW-Lacrosse Confessions 2.0."

The administrator of the site said anonymously in an email to News 19, "'The idea that some people shouldn't express themselves because others find the material offensive is wrong on all levels."

And some students, even ones who found the picture offensive, agree.

"I don't know about [taking it] down because we've said, everyone has their freedom of speech, but I feel it should have been regulated maybe," Ramirez said.

Senior Scott Johnson, agrees.

"I'm not big in to censoring, I think it just makes people want that page more, but I think people need to be responsible about what they post on Facebook too," he said.

Chancellor Gow says he too respects freedom of speech, and didn't personally request the page be taken down. But he adds if you want to post those things, use your own name, not the University's.

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