Politicians aren't the only ones who have to worry about getting caught with their foot in their mouth and having it posted on the Web. Students are now being encouraged to photograph their professors and post comments and ratings on the Internet, reports Inside Higher Ed. RateMyProfessors.com, a site that gives students a forum to vent or praise their teachers, is encouraging students to take photographs of faculty members and to post them along with the anonymous ratings.
RateMyProfessors says that it will implement quality control of the photographs, such as checking on whether the photographs really are the professors, have been altered or are pornographic.
"Camera phones in the classroom have a new meaning," said Patrick Nagle, president of the company, in a press release.
The new addition to the site appears quite popular, as RateMyProfessors has received more than 1,200 photographs of professors in the 48 hours following the announcement and is in the process of reviewing and uploading them.
As one can imagine, the service has its critics. For instance, there is no way to tell if a comment is from a disgruntled student or a professor's mother. Because the site posts anonymous comments, there is little accountability.
Professors, however, are being offered a new RSS feed which will "give the professors a voice on our site." They will be notified whenever one of their students posts a comment or photograph about them. That way they object to a photograph or want to replace it with a new photograph.