Monthly Archives: November 2010

Need another blog on feminism?

Probably not, but on the other hand, why the hell not?

Some online chums and I, disappointed by the faux feminism we keep finding on “feminist” blogs that are also about pop culture, decided to make our own. I am hoping that the combination of feminism and snark will fill the gaping hole in my soul left by the demise of FYCL.

Anyway, if you like feminism, pop culture, internets commentary and/or meanliness and snark, come check us out at Feminist Snark. I am really hoping to make it a group effort,  so if you ever feel inspired to contribute, feel free to email me at whatladder at gmail dot com.

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A New Low.

Ugh.

I know, I have been complaining all semester about the students in my online writing class. They are the laziest students I have ever had. Earlier in the semester I had it out with them about how my class was “too much work”. Because, you see, we only meet once a week, and then I give them online tasks to do to make up the other class time. These onerous tasks, this week, include watching a 15 minute TED talk, and reading some posts on Icanhascheezburger. These things, I am informed “take too much time”. When I asked for clarification, saying “So you’re telling me that you are spending more than 5 hours a week doing this stuff?” the room went strangely quiet.

Their research papers SUCKED; they were under-researched (in some cases non-researched), and in most cases lacked any kind of argument, discussion, thought or spelling.

Since this is a course in online communication, I designed a group assignment for them to do that involved trying to get content to an audience using the internet. They were allowed to design their own message and figure out how to get it to their audience using any number of methods, as long as some of the things they did used the internet or social media. The idea was to get them learning by doing, since so many snowflakes, and this group in particular, have so much trouble learning by reading information.

It felt a bit like kindergarten, the online equivalent of asking for plasticine sculptures, but it’s a Gen Ed class, and I am supposed to be experimenting with different learning methods. Plus, as I said, LAZY ASSHOLES.

So, they had 3 weeks to get their shit together, and I even gave them class time to work on it. A couple of groups had decent ideas, and worked to implement them, and actually got reasonable audiences given the time frame, although no one had anything like a stunning success.

The other part of the assignment, naturally, was for them to write a report on what they learned from the experience. I gave them guideline questions, but left a fair amount of the decisions about HOW they wrote it up to them.

So, this was worth 15% of their grade for the course, and at least 3 groups handed in reports that said, “We asked 20 people we knew on Facebook to join our group and 6 joined, so we think this is a success.”

That was it. I shit you not.

I am thinking about buying a cattle prod.

Covert Genius Offers me a Deal.

So.

My Covert Genius who was butthurt when I didn’t recognize his writing ability from the half-formed ideas he wrote in his emails, or the entitled ponitificating he did in his blog style journal entries, finally turned in his essay.

You know where this is going, right?

It was full of pontificating, and assumptions about groups of people, and his MLA was all up the wazoo, which, he informed me, was my fault because the library handout which 90% of students find perfectly comprehensible wasn’t good enough for him, nor was the MLA section in his textbook, so he had to MAKE UP his own style which included putting random words in brackets. It was also full of subjective language, and pronouns, which I had already warned him about when he told me his topic (typical snowflake, he wanted to write about his own generation and how awesome they are).

In short, it was pretty much dreckitude, as Andre Leon Talley would say. And because of his previous displays of butthurt, I was very kind when I marked it, and polite in my comments, and gave him an overly generous B-. Which, I should know better.

Man, if I thought he was butthurt before, you should see the level of butthurt now. It is like this much:

This is the worst mark anyone has ever given him! (I believe this. He is a browbeater, and I think a lot of his previous profs have probably caved.)

I suggested that he needed more evidence to support his claims, and he responded that evidence would “clutter up his argument”. His argument is WAY more important than any actual facts in the case. (Are you smelling a snowflake?)

I criticized his use of overly emotional language and hyperbole. In a research paper. OF COURSE HE IS EMOTIONAL! HE CARES ABOUT THE TOPIC! YOU KNOW WHY? HE IS WRITING ABOUT HIMSELF!

He’s really mad that I don’t recognize his previous award-winning genius. He’s not asking for 100% (although it is clear he thinks he deserves it), but he will offer me a bargain. I am to give him an A, and in return, he will… wait for it, this is awesome… take my feedback seriously.

Needless to say, I am an ungrateful asshole who rejected his offer out of hand. I did offer to let the subject co-ordinator mark it for him, but given that said prof actually SHOUTED with laughter when he read Covert Genius’ email to me, I don’t think much of his chances.