justonemoregame wrote:Would the world be a worse place if schools were not allowed to solicit via e-mail at all? At the very least, students should be allowed to choose which schools can send them information. Seems like a simple enough function to add the LSAC's site. I guess they would just flood your physical mailbox. Some do both (Rutgers)
LSAC used to charge a penny for every name a school downloaded. Then they made it free. Schools see email as a "free" medium of communication, and in my opinion, have abused the hell out of it. We, as a group, are strangling the goose that laid the golden egg.
The rationale is a noble one. Our goal is to reach students that might not have considered all the schools for which they might be a good fit. Confirmation bias is strong. Many students THINK they've done enough research, but in reality they've only done enough research to reaffirm their existing ideas. While there is a lot of information on the internet, it's not all accurate. Not all (perhaps even most) applicants do not have access to prelaw advisors at all much less good ones, many work and don't have time to research like the want to, etc. Allowing law schools to send information to students is one way for these students to get information.
The flipside is that it is up to law schools to use this responsibly. I try very hard to make my emails short and relevant to the intended audience. However, because of a few more aggressive schools, people stop reading ALL law school emails, regardless of source, and we all get labeled spammers. I know a lot of students who missed law fairs in their areas because they gave LSAC their parents' address, not their own. I give out fee waivers at events so they missed that opportunity.
I don't necessarily fault schools for spamming people. I understand why they do it. In a down year, they get pressure from their bosses. They will get asked, "Did you do everything you could to recruit and increase applications?" And what person wants to respond "Well, not really. I mean, we could have contact more students, but I didn't think it would work and I didn't want to bother them."?
I totally understand why the veteran admissions people who remember what it was like back before US News and when there were only like 150 law schools and no internet. It's a much more competitive game these days, which creates some not so positive behaviors in both applicants and law schools.
Texas Tech University School of Law