'The Phantom Professor'

No one at Southern Methodist University knew — for sure — who The Phantom Professor was. The professor’s blog, like those of many untenured academics, was anonymous and the university was never named. —Scott Jaschik‘The Phantom Professor’ (Inside Higher Ed)

A professor blogs anonymously, venting about the campus crime and the wealthy socialites in her classes. SMU officials admit that they know about the blog, they admit that they worry about the blog, and they admit that they think Elaine Liner might be the blogger. I’m not sure about the timeline of events, but an editorial in the school paper is involved.

Elaine Liner doesn’t get rehired.

Fired for blogging? Is this a first amendment issue?

The First Amendment reads, in its entirety, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.”

What, exactly, does Congress have to do with Southern Methodist University’s decision not to rehire a popular and talented writing professor?

“SMUAshley” is right: “You had free speech — your blog was published. What you don’t want is consequences of that speech.”

Liner might have been better off saving all those stories for a tell-all book, after she has carefully scrubbed it clean from any details that might identify individuals.

Come to think of it, might sell even better now, given the publicity it has received.