Monday, April 9, 2007

Online Poll Chicanery

An online March Madness poll to assess the "coolest law school" has been removed because of "a number of gaming attempts." The final poll was between NYU and Michigan; it was parallel to another bracket, UVA and Georgetown. (Totally UVA - although the notion that any law student or school is in any way "cool" is kind of absurd.)

According to the poll system host,
[a]t least 4 different automated scripts were being run to try to influence vote totals beginning earlier today.

The scripts were starting to cause severe performance problems for the site. We attempted to block by IP the attempts but whoever was behind one or more of the scripts kept moving to new machines. We finally were forced to delete the poll to end the problem completely.
The poll's sponsor,, is understandably peeved:
Jeez, people. We're very disappointed in you. This is a sad commentary on ethics within the legal profession -- as well as the coolness of law students and/or lawyers. Don't you people have anything better to do than cheat in a silly online poll?

We've asked for more details about the cheating from the Vizu folks (and we may disqualify one or both schools depending upon what we learn). We will keep you posted.
I know more about this than I'm saying.

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