Professors worried students will share lectures with 'right wing sites'

  • Professors across the country are expressing concern over courses being moved online as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
  • One professor expressed concern that "right wing sites" could expose what is being taught in college courses.

Professors across the country are taking to social media to express their concern over being forced to deliver their course lectures online amid the coronavirus outbreak, sharing with each other tips on how to limit the number of people who are able to see what they're teaching students, and criticizing "right wing sites" and even Campus Reform, specifically.

Texas Christian University Associate Professor of Political Science Emily Farris tweeted Thursday, "if you are recording a lecture on anything controversial, be prepared for right wing sites to ask students to share it." Campus Reform reached out to Farris via Twitter Direct Messaging to allow her the opportunity to further explain her comments or to clarify. She later blocked the author of this article on Twitter.

"if you are recording a lecture on anything controversial, be prepared for right wing sites to ask students to share it"   

[RELATED: Professor worries students will share 'controversial' recorded lectures as classes move online]

LaSalle University Assistant Professor of Public Health Christen Rexing replied to Farris' tweet, asking why others could find topics such as "gun safety, women's health, elections, etc." to be "controversial, as they are "evidence-based." 

"Seems like the flood gates could open," Rexing commented in response to courses moving online.

University of North Carolina political science graduate student Stephanie Shady also weighed in, saying, "Annnnd I just realized that the second half of my course focuses on public opinion towards and politicization of immigration. This will be interesting." Another user with the Twitter name "Prof CWO" replied "Sigh, I teach about white nationalism and this has been my biggest fear since we began transitioning to online instruction."

Columbia University political science professor Jeffrey Lax said he has been "thinking about" how students would be able to record classes.

Trinity College Associate Professor of Political Science Isaac Kamola who, as Campus Reform previously reported sought to hire a "Campus Reform Early Responder," specifically mentioned Campus Reform in his reply to Farris. 

[RELATED: Trinity College seeks 'Campus Reform Early Responder' to 'monitor' 'attacks' on profs]

"If Campus Reform harasses you or someone you know, the best response is to 'follow the money.' Campus Reform receives $1.4 million from the Leadership Institute, a Koch-funded organization designed to delegitimize academics they consider too left. They are not a new [sic] source," Kamola tweeted.

A user whose website says they are a history professor at a "community college in North Texas" wrote, "I'm taking steps to limit this but nothing is foolproof." 

Farris asked how Gunter was working to ensure her lectures are not made public, to which Gunter responded with one tip for her colleague.

"Instead of posting videos direct to LMS (which would then own them) I'm posting links to the videos on youtube. The videos themselves are 'unlisted' meaning you can't find them in a search or if you go to my page-only if you have the direct link. Doesn't stop link sharing though," Gunter said.

Follow the author of this article on Facebook: @JonStreetDC and Twitter: @JonStreet



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Jon Street
Jon Street | Managing Editor

Jon Street is a news editor for Campus Reform. Six years ago, Jon cut his reporting teeth fresh out of college as an intern at Media Research Center's CNSNews.com, where he interviewed multiple members of Congress and former presidential candidates. From there, he went on to complete a stint at Watchdog.org, where his exclusive, investigative work was picked up or cited by the New York Times, Washington Post, Fox News, National Review, and the Drudge Report, among others. More recently, Jon spent three years as an assistant editor at TheBlaze.com. In his free time, Jon enjoys trying new coffeehouses around the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area and traveling back to his home state of Missouri to spend time with his family.

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