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Hotmail Blocked! 
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MES-Zealot!

Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2007 11:33 am
Posts: 289
Location: Niigata
Post Hotmail Blocked!
Well, it finally happened! I work for a board of education in Japan that has finally decided they want to block Hotmail, Gmail and Yahoo because all of the "spam mails". The thing that spurred this crackdown was one of the city's policemen was surfing adult material at work and opened up the entire police server and put it online.

Up to date, "in the name of education", the city:
1. ...doesn't give us computers like every other teacher at school.
2. ...we can't bring in out own laptops...even if we don't connect them to the server.
3. ...we are forced to the communal computers, which are -- usually 900Mhz Celeron processors with a mere 256MB, Japanese OS, no USEFUL art editing software to make worksheets for classes;
4. ...and finally this week, they have blocked all online web-based emails.

I am so pissed of by this this BOE. Everytime I take a proactive step to try and improve the quality of the English education system here, I feel like they are tightening the handcuffs tighter! Anyways, I have spent all morning searching ways around this block but everything so far has been futile. I know there has got to be ways around this.

Anybody with any ideas?

Sorry for the rant...but I can't operate without my hotmail account. It is setup to receive all of my communication with the outside world -- friends, family, networks, forums, groups, etc.

*slightly edited by admin. Rant away but keep it clean please :) *

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Tue Sep 25, 2007 11:29 am
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MES-Zealot!

Joined: Wed Jan 24, 2007 8:57 pm
Posts: 135
Post 
Patrick,
Yikes! I feel for you. I don't know about how to get around the hotmail, but can you find some way to bring your own computer? My office has recently changed as well and no one is allowed to bring in their own computer. I was allowed to keep mine because all of my files are on a MAC. Could you use the "I can't use the Japanese OS" since I exchange a lot of files with English OS and or MAC users? or explain that since you visit schools, you need something in which you can easily access the files?

I know that you have done considerable work online, maybe if you push hard enough your BOE will make an exception.


Tue Sep 25, 2007 11:48 am
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MES-Zealot!

Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2007 11:33 am
Posts: 289
Location: Niigata
Post 
They know I can use the computers a little but they are not making any exceptions for foreigners. The harder I try to help, the harder they try to stop it! Other ALTs in the city can't read Japanese at all!

The website I'm building uses Microsoft Live, which is now blocked, so this is going to take an real blow to the quality of the site. It's like these idiots are begging me to spend my free time surfing the internet instead of doing something useful. When I approached them about needing a computer and tried to explain what I was trying to accomplish, they told me that unless I put my website on their city's server, it's not "city-related" and therefore not work related. I tried to explain to them the 3 benefits of not putting it on their server:

1. putting it on the server would essentially take all control out of my hands. Meaning, all direct contact with my site would be taken away and everything would have to be checked before being added.
2. keeping it off their server would protect them from any kind of copyright infringements.
3. education should not be subjected to geographic location.

I hate this city!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Tue Sep 25, 2007 12:42 pm
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Site Admin

Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2006 10:46 am
Posts: 2130
Location: Nagano, Japan
Post 
As far as email is concerned, could you down load a POP mail program? Something like MS Outlook, but not Outlook as you wouldn't want everyone looking in. But if you got the Modzilla version I'm sure no one would even open it. Just be sure you set it to leave a copy in your Y!mail, hotmail or Gmail.

I can see both sides. I can check my mail, but it might be better if they blocked me from doing that. I'd get more work done, because I tend to check email to procrastinate.

As far as the website thing goes, I'd say think bigger. Get an account with Hostmonster.com ($5/month), Bluehost.com or anywhere else really. You'll then have ftp access and can do pretty much anything you want as long as you have an internet connection.

I wouldn't bother with the city's server unless they are going to give you ftp access. If they'll do that, then host with them, but register a domain name and then just point your name servers to their server. Then they'll host your site for free and you can move it whenever you're ready.

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Tue Sep 25, 2007 12:53 pm
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MES-Fanatic!

Joined: Wed Dec 20, 2006 9:10 am
Posts: 71
Location: Japan
Post 
try bypasslive it's a very good way to get around the block. gain access to needed mail and/or other materials...


Fri Nov 02, 2007 10:22 am
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MES-Addict

Joined: Fri Apr 13, 2007 4:59 pm
Posts: 38
Location: Gunma Prefecture
Post 
I hope it isn't one of the first things you happened to try already, but I recently discovered I can easily get around my elementary school's content filters against gmail if I just log in through the https version.

I guess the https creates a tunnel that the school's firewall doesn't know exists between me and the gmail servers. Like I said, it was news to me until I happened to stumble upon a tidbit about it somewhere online, and lo and behold it worked like a charm.

Try it out and let me know if it works for you, too.

:wink:


Fri Nov 02, 2007 10:28 am
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MES-Zealot!

Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2007 11:33 am
Posts: 289
Location: Niigata
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You would be surprised about the things I've tried. I've tried online proxies, the 'https' trick, I've even tried channeling my work computer through my home computer and then bouncing it off an online proxy with no avail.

I've exhausted all of my nerdiness and still couldn't crack it. There's a way to do it but I need some jedi nerd force cuz the force is weak in me.

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Fri Nov 02, 2007 1:01 pm
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MES-Zealot!

Joined: Thu Feb 09, 2006 1:36 pm
Posts: 386
Location: Tohoku Japan
Post 
at my BOE we also can not use any web based emails

and we have filters (I am sure this is pretty common these days?)

but we do get supplied reasonable computers

(all the other teachers have to supply their own PCs)


Wed Dec 19, 2007 3:46 pm
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MES-Zealot!

Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2007 11:33 am
Posts: 289
Location: Niigata
Post 
In the city I am working in, the stupid BOE has not only punched us in the stomach by taking away web-based emails, but they then turned around and slapped us in the face because we are forced to use old computers and FORBIDDEN to bring our own computers.

I told my boss he should just remove the 'E' from BOE because they have done everything in their power to ensure the educational quality in this city is drastically lowered. He didn't like be saying that...probably cuz' the truth hurts. :lol:

What's even worsee than the computer issue, is that most of the other ALTs in the city hung me out to dry cuz' all of them, with the exception of one refused to take a public stand with me against the BOE. Needless to say, it pretty much wrecked an ethos of anything I stood up and took a stand against.

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Wed Dec 19, 2007 5:19 pm
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