Letters to the editor

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RE: Academic Misconduct

I received an e-mail on Oct. 31 from Mike Carroll, the Dean of Arts, concerning students sharing copyrighted textbook material online.  Now, putting aside my philosophical qualms with the institution of copyright and the ridiculousness of the uncompetitive scam that is academic publishing, I was particularly bothered by one quote: “Students need to exercise judgment when accessing material not provided by their instructor.”

I was unaware the university faculty held a monopoly on knowledge.  I rather think students need to exercise patting themselves on the back for thinking outside the box to access material unavailable to them.  I am also a little perplexed as to why independently seeking out information is considered “an attempt to unfairly gain an academic advantage”.  What if I just want a knowledge advantage?  Is that prohibited?

For the record I have not personally participated in any copying of textbook material.  I have no need to copy articles by people whose grasp of how regular folks use the English language is tenuous at best.

–Benjamin Weber

 

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