Illustration by Reid Shniderman ’20 |In the fall of 2018, the administration dismantled Airdrop on all new school issued devices.
By Carl Justice ’21
Recently, students have realized that AirDrop is no longer accessible on their school-issued computers. While some have been unhappy about this change, it is important that they realize that AirDrop is a completely unnecessary feature that can only cause harm.
The benefits of AirDrop are very limited. As explained by Apple, “AirDrop [allows users] to share and receive photos, documents, and more with other Apple devices that are nearby.” While this can definitely be useful, every student at Brophy has their own school email, making it very easy for students to send photos, documents, and more to their own devices and their classmates’. The only problem with using email instead of AirDrop is a slight hit to efficiency.
The real significant advantage of using AirDrop is allowing photos that are large to be shared without sacrificing resolution through compression. Unfortunately for the feasibility of AirDrop, there is yet another solution. Google Drive, which once again is available to all students, allows this same process to occur. The only sacrifice made by losing AirDrop is still a bit of efficiency.
After examining the benefits of AirDrop, it is clear that the only advantages for students are stymied by Brophy-provided alternatives. There are, unfortunately, significant disadvantages to AirDrop, which are exactly why AirDrop was removed.
The Brophy Student-Parent Handbook explicitly explains on page 14 that students “should not send or forward unsolicited messages, files, images or notifications to individuals or groups.” The handbook continues that AirDrop usage in this regard is not allowed. Unfortunately, this is one of the main uses of AirDrop, especially on a campus where three-fourths of students have MacBook Air computers provided by Brophy.
While there are ways to prevent mass unsolicited file sharing like switching AirDrop settings to prevent most people from sending files, some students can still be prone to receiving offensive or cruel images that violate multiple Brophy policies such as the harassment policy via AirDrop. Not only that, but AirDrop allows users to send files to tens of people at a time, as long as they are close in proximity to other users.
Overall, because the benefits are so limited and the costs can be so catastrophic at worst, AirDrop should not be on campus.