Yale blocks student course evaluation website

Campus Reform Reporter

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  • CourseTable displayed courses' average ratings.
  • Yale claimed the site was using copyrighted data and has blocked the site.
  • Yale University has upset students campus wide after blocking a student-developed course-listing and evaluation website.

    A petition, published early Wednesday morning, calls for Yale University to unblock CourseTable, a student developed course evaluation website formerly known as Yale Bluebook+. The site sorted classes by rating and clearly displaying courses’ average ratings.

    “We are disappointed that an institution we so love has let us down.”   

    Co-developer of CourseTable, Peter Xu, published an op-ed in The Yale Daily News explaining why the university shut down the website used by nearly 1,500 students.

    “The reasons cited were that we were using copyrighted Yale data, that the website was viewable by non-students with NetIDs and that we had averaged evaluations,” Xu wrote.

    According to a report the Yale Daily News, Xu and his brother, Harry Yu, tried to accommodate the administration and created mockups that removed the Yale name and the option to sort classes by ratings.

    Xu says that the administration was uncooperative, and began blocking IP addresses last Friday to make it appear that CourseTable’s servers were down. On Monday, the school blocked the site.

    The developers are claiming this is an issue of free speech, and the petition has garnered nearly 550 signatures.

    “Yale must embrace the values it abandoned: transparency, innovation, creativity, freedom of expression, and most of all, respect for its students,” Xu said.

    “We are disappointed that an institution we so love has let us down.”

    Follow the author of this article on Twitter @CalebBonham