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Isaac Smith poses with the controversial shirt that propelled him to sue the university in the Students Defending Students office in Baker University Center in Athens, Ohio, on February 2, 2015. The idea for the shirt came from the group's founding slogan in the 70's. 

Video of OU grad Isaac Smith lands atop Reddit page

A video of grad Isaac Smith is garnering widespread internet attention a day after it was published by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education.

A video of Isaac Smith, former associate director of Ohio University’s Students Defending Students, is garnering widespread internet attention a day after it was published by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE).

The video, “My College had a Problem with a Funny Shirt: a Q&A with Isaac Smith,” already has over 28,000 views on Youtube and was the third-highest ranked video on Reddit.com/r/videos as of 1 p.m. Thursday.

In the video, Smith details the origins of the widely-publicized lawsuit he filed against OU, recounts the origins of the shirts that sparked it and levies his opinion on the situation.

The video has received over 800 comments on Reddit as of press time, most of which appear to express support for Smith’s cause, or condemn the tightening of speech on college campuses.

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“I think overall the feedback has been pretty positive,” Smith said of the video early Thursday afternoon, adding that many commenters are “lamenting the fact that free speech seems to be under fire on college campuses.”

“A college campus should be a glorious haven for free speech,” Reddit user MeltBanana said. “Instead the college campus is turning into of the most dangerous places to speak your mind. It’s f--king disgusting and terrifying.”

Smith said he was “dismayed” that some commenters are placing the blame for Smith’s troubles with OU on F--kRapeCulture. He said that the feminist organization had nothing to do with the blowback from the shirts, and said they’ve been “nothing but supportive.”

Smith said the video was filmed last July at FIRE’s annual conference, and was likely published in an effort to spread the word about this year’s event.

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He also pointed out that the video comes less than a week away from the one-year anniversary of his filing a lawsuit against OU.

“I’m really glad that the video got posted on Youtube, and I’m glad that it became such a big thing for people to talk about on Reddit,” Smith said. “Obviously Ohio University is not alone in this, and that’s what is most concerning.”

jh082913@ohio.edu

@JeremyHTweets

 This article previously mistakenly said Smith is the former president of Students Defending Students. He is the former associate director.

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