StudentLife

Here’s what NOT to do while in law school

65 posts in this topic

Here’s what NOT to do while in law school:

1. Guys, please don’t write and publish in the student newspaper satirical “fictional” stories about the drunken shenanigans of upper year females at parties.

2. Girls, please don’t lose your minds thinking that said “fictional” satirical stories were biographical and written about you individually. Most importantly, don’t use the official law and social media course that you are enrolled in as a platform to single out another student and make public accusations by going directly to the media. Lastly, please don’t pile on and target individual classmates or student clubs via social media just because it was the trending thing of the day to do.

Because that’s exactly what happened last week.

http://edmontonjournal.com/news/local-news/university-of-alberta-law-faculty-investigates-after-student-article-prompts-allegations-of-sexism

http://www.calgaryherald.com/news/local-news/university+alberta+faculty+investigates+after+student+article/12430484/story.html

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/edmonton/misogynist-article-removed-from-u-of-a-law-school-website-1.3868434


Lesson learned: Not everyone thought “There's Something About Mary” was hilarious. The same could be said of “American Pie”.

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It's like UBC circa 2007 with GurilLAW News and the Delgamuukw "satire". Perhaps it is law school memory that is nasty, brutish and short.

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People are so sensitive these days. In my time at Ottawa there was an outcry because a female student wrote an article in our paper about how to look stylish without having to spend too much time or money on getting ready in the morning. Apparently that was also sexist and reinforced to women that they are required to look a certain way. Of course, the Ottawa Citizen and CBC didn't pick up on that one.... I can't believe what makes the papers these days.

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I'm trying to decide whether the article is less offensive, or less funny.  It's a tossup.  

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If you wrote an article that just relied on a bunch of negative outdated stereotypes about any particular ethnic group, it probably shouldn't be printed. Especially if it was as deeply unfunny as this one seemed to be.

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One question:  What was wrong with the dork in the cosplay outfit?  He's clearly interested - he's buying her jagerbombs (which, I wouldn't inflict on my worst enemy, but some people lie) - and is no doubt a sweet, sensitive guy with a thing for comic books, like the guys on Big Bang Theory.  Talk about missed opportunities.  

 

 

 

Some of her classmates were horrified, thinking the story was about them, she said.

 

Which raises the question:  Just how many members of the UofA class got drunk, stumbled into a pillar, and gave themselves a concussion at the annual law school Halloween party?  Because if it's more than 1 or 2, forget sexism, that school has an alcoholism problem.  

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I thought the blog post criticizing the original story was very well written. It is in the format of a letter and is clearly an opinion article.

 

It's also a comprehensive and respectful piece of writing that attacks the objectionable assumptions underlying the original story without "going after" the author.

 

Not everyone is going to agree with that view, but it's a perfectly legitimate criticism. I would not categorize that blog post as anyone "losing [their] mind"; rather I see it as a future colleague eloquently expressing concern and dismay over a real and ongoing issue in the profession.

 

(Not sure if I misunderstood the OP to be suggesting otherwise; maybe he was referencing something else.)

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I can't believe that Hal-LAW-ween article was even published in Canons. Regardless of whether it contains sexist undertones, it's just a bad piece of writing, plain and simple. You'd think they could muster up some slightly higher quality stuff 

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Hah.. exactly. It's so badly written and executed that I'm not surprised it went under fire.

 

Anyways, you could also wear a "no one gets off like Ghomeshi" muscle shirt to the grad gala. It's a quick way to make the dean leave her seat.

 

Rest assured, there were many "town halls" and counseling services offered to the community. Many letters of complaint, and complaints about complaints, etc.

 

Probably on the what not to do list.

Edited by daw33d
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Hah.. exactly. It's so badly written and executed that I'm not surprised it went under fire.

 

Anyways, you could also wear a "no one gets off like Ghomeshi" muscle shirt to the grad gala. It's a quick way to make the dean leave her seat.

 

Rest assured, there were many "town halls" and counseling services offered to the community. Many letters of complaint, and complaints about complaints, etc.

 

Probably on the what not to do list.

 

On the other hand, despite the controversy it managed to not get in a newspaper. So there's some kind of lesson in there.

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On the other hand, despite the controversy it managed to not get in a newspaper. So there's some kind of lesson in there.

Yeah, I'm pretty proud of that. Newspapers are like vultures over this kind of thing. With few good journalists around.. the facts are hardly represented adequately.

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I have been part of a number of trials where very senior journalists sit through the Crown's opening statement and leave before defence says a word, then report the Crown theory as fact.

 

It's infuriating and depressing.

 

I do not have a high opinion of the media generally.

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I have been part of a number of trials where very senior journalists sit through the Crown's opening statement and leave before defence says a word, then report the Crown theory as fact.

 

That's not true... they report the Crown theory as allegations so as not to get sued. They just don't print any allegations that might suggest a different conclusion.

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I thought the blog post criticizing the original story was very well written. It is in the format of a letter and is clearly an opinion article.

 

It's also a comprehensive and respectful piece of writing that attacks the objectionable assumptions underlying the original story without "going after" the author.

 

Not everyone is going to agree with that view, but it's a perfectly legitimate criticism. I would not categorize that blog post as anyone "losing [their] mind"; rather I see it as a future colleague eloquently expressing concern and dismay over a real and ongoing issue in the profession.

 

(Not sure if I misunderstood the OP to be suggesting otherwise; maybe he was referencing something else.)

 

I wasn’t talking about their blog posts. They did go after the author right after that. Some of the writers of the blog went straight to the media (one girl in particular contacted the media first) which then published their one sided allegations calling the author out publicly. Goodbye articling prospects for that second year student. This happened after the Vice-Dean announced there was an ongoing internal investigation and to forward all concerns to him pending a town hall meeting. This also happened after the offending article was deleted and an apology already issued by the author. At the very least the public escalation by contacting the newspapers and providing interviews was improper supervision of the students in that class since “going to the media” happened during their law and social media coursework. To make things more confusing the class is directly supervised by the Vice-Dean who is also the one doing the investigation and speaking to the parties.

 

How would you like it if back in school students above you used a course they were in to publish negative articles in the mainstream media accusing you of all sorts of vile things? Referring to the Edmonton Journal article which some of them initiated by contacting the media first through their position in the course.

 

Losing their minds referred to some of the initial reactionary personal comments on Facebook and other social media made by various students directed at the individual. Even later some did not accept his apology or thought it was not genuine.

 

And yes, the school does have a drinking problem, but that is a topic for another day. If only you knew some of the things that happened in the recent past…

 

I will now go back to watching Animal House, while working on my Professional Responsibility paper.

Edited by StudentLife

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What is the issue? The author published the article under his own name, so obviously it's out there. He published it, so it's part of the public record. I haven't seen the apology, but if he did, that's part of the public record too.

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How would you like it if back in school students above you used a course they were in to publish negative articles in the mainstream media accusing you of all sorts of vile things? Referring to the Edmonton Journal article which some of them initiated by contacting the media first through their position in the course.

 

Losing their minds referred to some of the initial reactionary personal comments on Facebook and other social media made by various students directed at the individual. Even later some did not accept his apology or thought it was not genuine.

Not sure why this got personal all of a sudden.

 

In fact, I have had things I have said or written subjected to public scrutiny and even - yikes - Facebook and the comments section of the online news. It is not a pleasant experience - but it's what happens when you make public statements (or publish content in the public realm). If you can't take the heat don't play with the stove. You can't later complain that things got hot!

 

(I am afraid there is no rule anywhere that says anyone has to accept an apology or believe it is genuine. Sad for the honestly contrite, but true nonetheless.)

 

I am sure this has been a painful experience for the author. Hopefully he learns from it. Hopefully his peers are big enough to let him move on. Their (in)ability to do so will ultimately reflect on them too.

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How would you like it if back in school students above you used a course they were in to publish negative articles in the mainstream media accusing you of all sorts of vile things?

 

I don't see anyone "accusing (the writer) of all sorts of vile things". I see them saying he wrote the article that he wrote.

 

Goodbye articling prospects for that second year student.

 

Well, first of all: "After fearlessly hitting on pretty much all of the 1Ls, some who were clearly attached to partners, word, like herpes, spread at the party." If someone who writes this poorly ever had "articling prospects", thank God something came along and wiped them out. Second of all: employers judge you by the things that you do. If someone did something really great in the course of an extracurricular activity, it would reflect positively on them. This guy chose to write "word, like herpes", and if it reflects poorly on him, welcome to an employment market in which people judge applicants by the shit they do. Welcome to adult life.

I communicate in real life exactly how I communicate on here. Do you know how many professional opportunities I've lost because that guy I called stupid yesterday turned out to be my potential new boss's dad? Do you know how many professional opportunities I've gained because that other guy I called stupid yesterday turned out to be stupid, and people were impressed with my forthrightness? If you're going to want to reap the benefits of the good---and I suspect that if the "writer" of the "article" had written something brilliant that changed the face of Canadian jurisprudence, he'd want credit for it---you've got to accept the risk of consequences of the bad.

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I don't see anyone "accusing (the writer) of all sorts of vile things". I see them saying he wrote the article that he wrote.

 

 

I think the OP is referring to the Facebook hubbub. 

 

 

 

I communicate in real life exactly how I communicate on here. Do you know how many professional opportunities I've lost because that guy I called stupid yesterday turned out to be my potential new boss's dad? Do you know how many professional opportunities I've gained because that other guy I called stupid yesterday turned out to be stupid, and people were impressed with my forthrightness? If you're going to want to reap the benefits of the good---and I suspect that if the "writer" of the "article" had written something brilliant that changed the face of Canadian jurisprudence, he'd want credit for it---you've got to accept the risk of consequences of the bad.

 

While I agree with you, how many of these professional opportunities were at the end of a degree that required considerable investment and the only way to use it was to go through some form of internship/articling/residency? Not exactly like this student can set up shop on his own or lateral into some different role - a JD is pretty hard to market without articles. 

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As dumb as that article was, in fairness to the author, it is worth saying that people just love scandal. People like to make a big deal out of things because it is interesting, it's something to do. There are a few offended people and then a whole bunch of people that get "offended by association" and it just turns into a big thing. 

 

And seriously, article or no article, I find the party atmosphere at U of A to be pretty bad. The fairly large fringe group that stays out of it is kind of shocked and embarrassed at the whole thing.

Edited by ZappBranniganAgain
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that entire post could have all the genders swapped and it would still make sense. If anything, the stereotype of a person drinking far too much and hitting on anything that moves is a male stereotype. 

 

The article wasn't funny, especially the ending, but it was clearly intended as a joke. 

 

Honestly though, if you think there is even the slight chance that article is written about you, the article isnt going to make your reputation any worse.

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