Spotify is blocked, but do you know why?

The reasoning behind blocking Spotify and other popular sites on the Wi-Fi network

Hunter Minne, Staff Writer

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The popular music streaming service Spotify was temporarily blocked on November 18, 2019 on St. Pius X’s SPX-BYOD Wi-Fi network, for technical reasons.

Before blocking Spotify, Director of IT Mr. Tim Stultz had been receiving complaints from multiple teachers about extremely poor Wi-Fi connection in their classrooms. Upon further inspection, Mr. Stultz discovered that Spotify was partially to blame as it was using up lots of the network’s bandwidth.

“And it was mostly due to Spotify running during certain periods of the day and using a high amount of bandwidth,” Mr. Stultz said.

However, students will be relieved to know blocking Spotify was not a permanent solution, it is just a temporary fix for the school’s Wi-Fi problems.

“I’m not saying that it’s blocked forever,” Mr. Stultz said. “But right now, we are still testing to make sure that, after we’ve turned it [Spotify] off, it’s allowing the classroom teachers to do what they need to do. So it’s still a work in progress, but as of right now we have blocked it so that we can continue to test the network.”

Most things blocked on the St. Pius network are blocked automatically. Nevertheless, sometimes specific websites must be blocked individually if a problem is reported.

“Anything that interferes with the educational use of the technology, then we’ve got to take the education as a priority over recreation,” said Mr. Stultz. “All the extra stuff, it’s not a right it’s a privilege.”

When more popular sites such as Spotify or Netflix, are blocked, some students prefer to avoid the block entirely using VPNs, or virtual private networks. While this may seem like an easy way around St. Pius’s safeguards, Mr. Stultz advises students to follow the school’s technology policies that restrict VPN or proxy usage.

“We have ways of knowing if people are using VPNs, so if they are we’ll find them out, and it’s not going to be good,” Mr. Stultz said. “I would definitely recommend they do not try to go that route.”

Although there is no definite date for when the block on Spotify will end, Mr. Stultz assures students that it will happen eventually. Until then, we”ll have to patiently wait for its return.