In this day an age of interne popularity contests, online reviews, and rate-my-professors, I thought I would share this article today.
“Rating or Defaming?”
“Many professors dislike instructor review websites, saying they attract disgruntled students in particular and thus offer a skewed – but very public – account of their teaching abilities. Others say students aren’t always the best judges of teaching ability, and that they tend to rate easier courses and professors more highly than meaningful but challenging ones. But most professors now see being rated on the Internet – good or bad – as an inevitable part of the job.”
“Sally Vogl-Bauer, a tenured professor of communications at the University of Wisconsin at Whitewater, doesn’t dispute that students retain the right to exchange opinions about professors online. But in a civil suit filed in a Wisconsin circuit court, she says that a former student’s extensive online commentary about her teaching amounts to defamation -- not protected speech. She says the student, after being dismissed from the university, “engaged in an intentional, malicious and unprivileged campaign” throughout 2013 to besmirch her reputation. She says it resulted in “substantial economic, reputational and emotional injuries,” and she’s seeking an unspecified amount in damages.”
“The case raises questions about the line between rating and defaming one’s professor, and of what, if any, ethical and legal obligations students have in publicly assessing professors’ performance.”
Read the whole thing here: http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2014/05/23/professor-sues-student-over-his-online-reviews-her-course#sthash.QkMBrwYZ.dpbs
It does not matter whether you are K12 or Higher Ed because this affects all educators. What are your thoughts?
Dr Flavius A B Akerele III