Due to my students messing around too much, I decided to severely ratchet up the web filtering (we use OpenDNS). Since the main thing they do is looking up random stuff on the web, I blocked all major search engines. However now replit.com will not allow them to log in, due to a requirement for access to google – even if they are not logging in with a Google account!
Does anyone know of a good workaround for this? I tried firewalledreplit and the old repl.it, but they all seem to have the same limitation…er, feature.
Yes, I can set the default search engine on all computers to be duckduckgo or bing or whatever, but that won’t stop them from visiting www.google.com, which must not be blocked for replit logins to work.
I understand your concern about students neglecting their assignments in favor of other activities, but I don’t believe this approach will be effective. A vast number of websites depend on major search engines, and I think even Replit utilizes Google in some capacity, possibly for SEO. Therefore, blocking major search engines is unlikely to be helpful. Perhaps you should consider an alternative solution, such as blocking specific terms that students might use inappropriately?
I’ve never been a fan of technological solutions to behavioral issues. I just want to throw up a speedbump or two (most of my students are 10-12 years old, some with weak impulse control).
Obviously replit uses Google, as I stated in my original note. If they use it for SEO that should have nothing to do with authentication. Since replit offers Google, Facebook, et al. credentials for logging in, it makes some sense that blocking Google might cause issues. However blocking Facebook does not have any effect on logging in.
I don’t even use Google as a search engine – I use duckduckgo and/or Brave, and I actually resent any kind of requirement that one must permit Google, Microsoft, Apple, or any other megacorp in order to use a product.
Blocking by keyword is absolutely unworkable. For instance a recent search from one student was “lgbtq bear meme”.