This is extracted from an interview on admissionsdean.com with Sarah Zearfoss
SZ You know, there’s not a ton of misinformation out there, but it does come up from time to time. I’ll tell you, I actually had an interesting incident happen just today that I’d like to share with you since it relates to the topic of discussion boards. Right before lunch we got a call from an irate, really angry woman. She identified herself as a neighbor of an applicant who recently received a rejection letter from us – but this applicant had been wait listed at Penn and admitted to Columbia.
AD A “neighbor,” huh? Is that sort of like the preface to a lot of questions you hear in a law school classroom – “This isn’t me, but I have a friend . . .”?
SZ [Laughing] It could be, but I’m not really sure. Anyway, she was demanding to know how that could have happened. She wouldn’t tell us the name of the applicant we supposedly denied – and even if she had, of course, we wouldn’t have discussed her file or entertained a conversation with her. But why I bring this up, is because she kept saying over and over, “Whatever you tell me, I’m posting on Top-Law-Schools.com.” Really, she kept repeating this. What I find interesting is how she was beating us over the head with this, as an explicit threat.
So, back to your original question, how have discussion boards affected my job in admissions? Well, I guess it has made us more guarded. We are realistic about the possibility that anything we say can show up in some form (whether accurate or inaccurate) on a discussion board. Because of this fact, it inhibits some of our communications with applicants unless we feel very comfortable and confident about the person we’re talking with. So, in that respect, I guess the prospect of being misquoted on a discussion board does adversely affect our job.