Zoom bombing: Classroom distractions reach another level


Teagan Smith

The term Zoom bombing refers to the act of joining another school's Zoom call to prank teachers and disrupt classes.

As students across the country attend school remotely, many of the normal in-person classroom disruptions — such as talking to your neighbor or sneaking off to the bathroom for half the class period — no longer occur during online school.

So naturally, people have taken it upon themselves to create new ones.

This caused the birth of Zoom bombing.

Basically Zoom bombing occurs when a student sends, shares or posts a link to their classes’ Zoom meeting. This allows random people to join classroom zoom calls and interrupt or prank teachers.

Famous Youtube channels such as “Nelk” have a series of video montages where they enter different college Zoom classes and distract the class and professor. During quarantine Youtubers and other social media influencers were unable to interact with people in real life, so they turned to Zoom bombing as a way to make more content. These creators are adults and are not breaking any laws, so they received no repercussions — besides being kicked out of the zoom by the professor.

These videos, however, inspired younger students to follow this trend. These kids think that because it is not their school Zoom calls that they are “bombing” that they won’t get in any trouble, but they are wrong.

The extent of which these pranks go vary tremendously. Some teenagers will join a class and make distracting noises or play loud music until they are removed from the call, but other incidents are much more absurd.

In some cases schools are tracing the accounts so the students can be identified and punished because of the severity of their actions. These “pranks” are even being sent to local law enforcement in extreme circumstances such as nudity.

Last year, many teachers claimed that the biggest distraction in a classroom was a cell phone, now it’s a random person joining your online class and flashing everyone.

This new form of online life has instilled a sense of boldness into everyone. They find it easier to get away with everything because they are at home behind a screen, and are able to do more outrageous things. This also stems from the fact that schools can no longer give punishments like in-school suspensions, so many students think they are free from all forms of repercussions.

DGS along with other schools have taken steps to prevent Zoom bombs from occurring (this is why we can’t have nice things). Now zoom calls can only be accessed by accounts in our district and many teachers require students to manually sign in with specific codes, passwords and other IDs instead of merely pressing a link.