Should students be allowed to tape and post videos of their teachers?

Summary: An article I came across in Education Week points to a disturbing trend- kids who take camera-enabled cellphones to class, sneakingly record some "footage" of their teachers, edit this "content," and then post it on YouTube, MySpace or similar sites.Some ironies here.

mongzilla.jpg
 

An article I came across in Education Week points to a disturbing trend- kids who take camera-enabled cellphones to class, sneakingly record some "footage" of their teachers, edit this "content," and then post it on YouTube, MySpace or similar sites.

Some ironies here. In some cases, the very editing skills the students use to post these videos were taught to them by the very teachers depicted in these clips. I've posted a screencap from an example, linked below.

In just one example, Education Week's Vaishali Honawar notes that:

..." in the Kent school district in Washington state, teacher Joyce Mong found herself the subject of a video titled "Mongzilla,"  shot by students in her classroom over several days, which made fun of her appearance. Teachers say that knowing they may be photographed at any time and then see their likeness broadcast on the Web, is a new source of stress in their jobs."

In a stance that should surprise no one, The American Federation of Teachers ain't too happy about this. Honowar quotes AFT general counsel David Strom (not the tech writer and pundit) as saying that these actions are "disturbing to the educational process," because the fear of being taped could change how teachers interact with students.

I'm of two minds about this. In a world long ago and far away, I  have taught and been made fun of, and the X-chromosomal unit is a teacher of technology in a middle school. But then, I have this reflexive, hard-wired belief against censorship.

Let's start a discussion here, using these two questions as a launching pad:

How far should schools limit cellphone camera use in classrooms?

If students create clips of their teachers and post them on public websites, should that lead to disciplinary action?

Topics: Censorship, IT Employment

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