You’re fired!

by Chris Bertram on June 5, 2009

Well someone had to use that headline first, so it might as well be me. Does anything demonstrate the desperation and vacuouseness of the Brown adminstration more than the “appointment”: of a former entrepreneur, turned property developer, turned reality-show compere as “enterprise Czar”? Actually, don’t answer that question, because lots of other things do. Despite a lifetime of voting Labour, I couldn’t bring myself to back them in the Euros (went for the Greens in the end, faute de mieux, since you ask). Maybe nothing can save Labour, but Alan “tm” Johnson might be their only chance. Brown needs to jump though.

At IHE, Scott Jaschik has a piece about a site that sells corrupted files to students as a way to get a few extra hours or days to finish an assignment. The idea is that the student submits a corrupted file, it takes the instructor a while to figure this out, in the meantime the student finishes the assignment.

Although I’ve never had students send me corrupted files, I’ve certainly had them supposedly send me attachments that weren’t there in reality. Of course, most people have, at one time or another, forgotten to attach a file to an email so it’s hard to assume it’s always intentional, but one wonders.

The piece made me reflect on what other excuses are emerging in the new digital environment that weren’t in vogue earlier. I’ve had students claim to have lost their Internet connection at home making it difficult to meet a deadline. While on the one hand, I tend to be skeptical of this, ISPs are sufficiently bad that it’s not completely implausible. What’s your favorite digital-era bogus excuse?

As a tribute to old excuses that presumably some still use, here’s a link to the “The Dead Grandmother/Exam Syndrome and the Potential Downfall Of American Society” [or pdf] by Mike Adams in case there are people who haven’t seen it yet.