This blog will be about things I dislike. If I was a fan of internet meme type things, I could say “Do Not Want,” however I prefer to communicate using my own special version of english.
I dislike it when The Poly doesn’t endorse candidates. As a result, I am not endorsing The Rensselaer Polytechnic as a legitimate source for campus information and opinion… that would be the act of negatively endorsing.. not just avoiding the issue like they do. Sure, the decision might be hard… and they’ll have to communicate with the winner, even if they didn’t endorse him/her which might be awkward… but if they are going to be in the business of endorsing people than they should do so. If they are in the business of offering biased opinion in response to an interview than they should change their model to that, a more accurate reflection of what they’ve done the past 2-3 years. This lack of endorsement gives me the sensation that The Poly feels neither candidate will do a good job, and that maybe I’d be better writing someone in. I am unsure how familiar The Poly staff is with the job of GM and Student Government at RPI. Historically speaking their ed/op articles on the subject have been terribly slanted and I view them as slightly out of touch. No, I can’t say that I’m in the SGS 24/7, nor have I attended every minute of ever senate meeting ever, but I do my darnedest to be informed as to what is going on whereas they opt to make up the rest of the story. I have hope that some day The Poly will write something positive about Student Government at RPI. Despite the many failures of student government at RPI over the year, there have been a few success, which tend to go untouted outside the Top Hat column.
I dislike it when candidates running for office cite being in the “Web Tech Group” as a qualification for office. While I think that the members of the WTG running for office are well informed people and it shows campus involvement, being in a group responsible for making websites isn’t the reason why they are informed or extra qualified for the job. I would cite an involvement with student government or the senate.. not a distant adgency.. possibly remarking on a specific area or two that one is familiar with. It would look very dumb if I wrote “Can write PHP, RoR, and HTML” as a qualification for Senator… maybe if I was hoping to be CIO again I would do that.. but Senator? really? I think back to some of the top Senator’s I’ve seen over the years, and I have trouble citing anyone who has been effective at office because they were good with computers.
I dislike it when candidates hope to better “use” the WTG to fight the campus communication battle. Last time I checked, none of us were robots or tools that could be “used.” As the CIO, I report to the Senate and could therefore be responsible for projects from the Senate, but at no point am I required to pass off projects the group because it has been said. The WTG tends to do its own thing, with a strategically-ill-defined adgenda that overlaps a few broad areas that the Senate Student Governemnt is interested in. If I have the pleasure to be CIO next year, I look working to working with the elected people to figure out what we can do to help. I do not look forward to being used by an elected person to communicate something because they said so. I actually don’t think this is an issue, as its likely a poor choice in words and not reflective of a mentality… never the less, I can dislike it.
People who untag themselves from photos that they are clearly in are also commiting a practice I dislike. I won’t untag myself from a photo unless I am actually not in the photo… like when my iLife identifies me instead of my brother… a legitimate mistake which I should correct. I guess I could be embarassed about the photo or fearful some employer might find it one day and be like “hark! what are you doing in that photo? remind me again why I should hire you?” Personally, I minimize my engagment in things that I’m not comfortable being documented. Take photos of me all the time I’m in public for all I care… you need not consult me. If I don’t want to be documented, I’ll creatively hide from the photo, such that I cannot be identified or I’ll adjust my behavior to something I am comfortable being documented in… you shouldn’t have to adjust your picture taking efforts to me. If you are embarassed about a photo taken of you maybe you should rethink what you’re doing… not the photo.
Traditionally, I’ve been in support of people doing moderately illogical things if they help to achieve a longer term logical goal. Learning their is no longer term logical goal invalidates my support of the illogical behavior and I will reclassify it as a waste of time. That said, its too bad more people didn’t have longer term goals or committments in life at a young age. As a member of the Boy Scouts of America, there was a pretty well defined long term goal sequence (and by long term I mean like 6-8 years). Academia doesn’t present these sort of long term committments unless you’re a faculty member, at which point you can go really really long term. Looking around at students I think that people are unwilling to stick with something. Its not that they are necessarily going to change and move on to something else, but rather people seem unwilling to settle down and accept a burden. While life can be quite dynamic, there are many things that aren’t really going to change, and in my effor to better society in some way, I am interested in doing my part to help out with the more stable things… in whatever capacity I can. Be it today, tomorrow, or 4 years from now.