Minecraft is primarily either available via Bedrock (a safer, more secure version of the game available on all major gaming platforms) or Java (more customizable with more mods and modes available). There is a new (old, really) version of Minecraft that kids are starting to use more and more: Eaglercraft.
What is Eaglecraft?
Eaglercraft is an instance of Minecraft 1.5.2 that players can access on any modern web browser. It supports both single-player and multiplayer gameplay. By putting Minecraft in a web browser, as opposed to a standalone application like with Java or Bedrock, effectively changes how the game will be moderated in work or school settings.
We’ve all experienced some kind of content blocking as we’ve worked and studied in different environments. Chromebooks and computer labs are locked down to within an inch of their digital existences so that students focus on the tasks in front of them. Schools have instituted these rules partly to protect themselves from liability (in case someone accesses something deeply inappropriate) and partly to ensure data protection and privacy.
Why Kids Use Eaglecraft and Issues Which May Arise
Kids are using Eaglercraft to get around the content blocking. On the one hand: good for the kids. We love the ingenuity to find ways to always be playing Minecraft. On the other hand: playing Minecraft, even in a browser, on one’s Chromebook or school computer is almost always going to be a direct violation of the Code of Conduct that gets signed at the beginning of a student’s time at a given school.
It’s important to keep the school’s IT Code of Conduct in mind when talking to your kid about some of the ethical challenges around using Eaglercraft on a school-assigned system. If a school finds out that a system has been used for non-school purposes in an egregious manner, much as playing a version of Minecraft to subvert content moderation, they will likely remove the system and potentially seek suspension (or expulsion) depending on the severity of the infraction.
Eaglercraft is ingenuitive, but maybe not the right choice for a school PC.
What do you think? Sound off in the comments and let us know your thoughts!
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