Thursday, September 13, 2007
Posted by Jeff Lipshaw
That's the suggestion of Michelle Morris, Lecturer in Law and Research Librarian at the University of Virginia Law School in a piece over at the Yale Law Journal Pocket Part in a reaction to "L'affaire Trustafarian" involving Boalt and Hastings after the Virginia Tech tragedy.
Alan and I both expressed views similar to those of Michelle back when the issue was hot - law students need to understand that they become lawyers, and are held to the standard of lawyers when they get to law school, not just when they graduate. The question back then was whether the Boalt student at the center of the controversy would be obliged to disclose the contretemps in his or her bar application. Michelle goes two steps further by suggesting not only the bar application but the law school application require the disclosure of any screen names or aliases used by the applicant.
I'm not sure how I feel about the suggestion. Requiring disclosure of online activity while one was a law student, at least after having been given the kind of warning some schools are now giving (I believe including here at Suffolk), does not seem too draconian to me. But I'm not sure it's fair to go back to what one did as an eighteen year old, and in any event, do the costs outweigh the benefits of that?