Friday, May 25, 2007

Fake Students Online?

"On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog." If only I had a nickel for every time I've had to answer the following question: "How do you know that your on-line students are who they say they are?"

This is a beautiful story. A young lady climbed in and out of a dorm room at Stanford University, attended classes, and pretty much looked like any other student at the prestigious U. Only one problem. She didn't register for classes, never was assigned the dorm room, never paid for tuition or fees, and is not a Stanford student at all.

Yep, that whole on-line thing is VERY suspect. Of course, these two things are not quite the same. The Stanford imposter was never going to get a degree from the university since she wasn't ever admitted, and I suppose that someone could get an on-line degree while not really being who they say they are, or by having other people pose as them on-line. Yes, anything is possible in both the on-line world and the other "real" world. But it's nice to have more ammunition for replying to the "how do you know who they are" question.

Photo of dog at Stanford under CC license by kennejima

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