This is a follow up to my May 4 post, addressing the problems that students have had with Middlebury Confessional, the anonymous online forum.
In my May 3 letter to students, I tried my hand at moral suasion, asking posters to Middlebury Confessional to treat one another with some civility. However, at the end of that note, I suggested that the Handbook does give concerned students some options for redress. Here they are:
1. File a complaint based on the College’s harassment policies. Middlebury College prohibits “any form of coercion or harassment that insults the dignity of others and interferes with their freedom to learn or work.” The Handbook provides a comprehensive definition of harassment as well as instructions for filing a complaint. Potential complainants should consult the Handbook and speak with one of the College’s human relations advisors if they believe they have been subject to harassment.
2. File a complaint with Library and Information Service based on the College policies regarding the “responsible use” of computing and network services. The Handbook notes that “the same standards of civilized discourse and etiquette that govern our face-to-face interactions should apply in cyberspace. All users of our computing and networking facilities bear the responsibility to avoid libel, obscenity, undocumented allegations, attacks on personal integrity, and harassment.” Anyone who feels that these standards have been violated may file a complaint with LIS, and LIS will “investigate and act, including cooperating with legal authorities, if necessary.” Contact person: Carrie Rampp, Area Director of Resource Development & Services, LIS. Ext 2451; firstname.lastname@example.org
3. Register a complaint with Community Council. Community Council “considers policies and issues in all areas pertaining to the nonacademic life” and recommends actions to the president and administration “in which the council has an interest.” Any member of the Middlebury community may bring a concern or recommendation to Community Council for its consideration.
These options will also be posted on the Dean of the College web page.