In response to the “Students mixed on WKU’s policy:”
As a recent WKU business graduate, I felt it was necessary to speak up.
It sounds like WKU’s administration needs to take some classes in social media. It boils down to this: Should they be actively monitoring social media outlets for positive and negative perceptions? Definitely, without a doubt.
Attempting to discipline students for sharing negative remarks about the university? Completely unacceptable.
Let’s ignore the legality of the matter and look at this from a business standpoint — Ransdell wants more money, right?
The most successful companies in the social media world are actively engaging their customers. WKU’s customers are its students. Now, when intelligently managed businesses see complaints on message boards or find posts putting the company in negative light, successful companies take responsibility. They interact with the customer to find the source of the problem, and they reach out directly to fix it, changing that perception. This turns negative commentary or spite into happy, repeat customers (or upset students into future donors). Censoring or punishing them will only enhance that frustration felt, making them lash out further and with more vigor. WKU will definitely lose that battle.
Why should the student be punished for WKU’s faults? If WKU were smart, they would invite complaining students to small-group discussions to initiate dialogue about how to improve the situation, not punish them for speaking up. This is an opportunity to make WKU great. Students are getting engaged — they care. Listen to them and work with them.