“I have higher education on my side, you just have your sites!” was basically the summary of UK professor Bill Cooke’s blog post about higher-educator rating websites like Rate My Professor and it’s British knock-off Rate My Lecturer.
Having apparently just learned that such websites exist, Professor Bill Cooke took to his own corner of the web to sound off on these “inhumane” and “dangerous” services. After all, if Professor Cooke gets a couple of bad ratings, why should students be encouraged to take his class so he can impart his knowledge on them?
We digress. In fact, we should point out that Professor Cooke does specifically mention a bad review that set him on his course here, but the title of his otherwise-academic post, “WE ARE NOT DANCING BEARS: OPPOSING RATE YOUR LECTURER,” implies some sour grapes.
“But what I am not is a public performer, a stand-up comedian, a cabaret artist. I have a mum and a dad and a partner and children, and friends and neighbours. If my occupation makes me personally the subject of anonymous, public comments about my day to day performance or appearance that they and anyone else can read then that is not the job I signed up for.”
Good grief, professor. It’s just a rating website. And in fact, it doesn’t look like anyone has even gotten to you yet:
It really looks like Professor Cooke is expertly shooting right at the middle, here. He’s fair enough that no one feels the need to exercise petty revenge against him online, yet also unspectacular enough that he doesn’t really leave much of an impression.
Still, he has balls for putting himself out there, so we commend him.
Others were not so kind. Gawker‘s headline on the subject reads: “Indignant Professor Miffed That Students Have Opinions,” and Hamilton Nolan writes:
“It is absolutely outrageous that we live in a day and age when people who pay someone to do a job might discuss whether or not that job is done well— in public. People have mums and dads, you know.”
Maybe these two things are not unrelated …
Sound off! Do you agree with Professor Bill Cooke? Are these types of rating websites harmful, or do you find them helpful?
[Image via: Everett Collection / Shutterstock]