Ryerson University hosted a town hall Friday morning asking the community if they wanted to adopt Google Apps to provide email, calendar service and a suite of other tools for academic use.
Some faculty members say that university is rushing to a decision.
Professors are wringing their hands over the possibility that the U.S. government could be reading Ryerson’s emails if the university implements its proposed switch to Google’s email server.
The Patriot Act allows the US government to view any email sent through Google.
A pro side is pushing the university to adopt Google Apps:
“The consensus has been that our email is lagging,” said Dimitri Androutsos, chair of the advisory committee on academic computing. “We can’t keep up with what’s out there.”
But a no side is asking the university to avoid using Google as its next email provider.
“Many professors are engaged in serious and extensive research,” said professor Anver Saloojee, president of the Ryerson Faculty Association. “We have real concerns about intellectual property rights.”
Check out some of the highlights below and the second by second discussion underneath.
"Google is like a drug pusher - they want to get you on their heroin, addicted to their software" - best metaphor ever? #RUGooglerstheryersonianvia twitter on Nov 25, 2011 at 10:42 AM
Q: "What is Ryerson's commitment to Google" A: "We commit to a contract, but Google gets no money from Ryerson"theryersonianvia twitter on Nov 25, 2011 at 10:40 AM
Lesser: if we adopted Google, we'd have a 3 year commitment with extension for another 2Calvin ToNov 25, 2011 at 10:40 AM
Androutsos: Harvard, Stanford have adopted Google. How is that a negative effect on our reputation? It makes us look cutting edge, forward thinking.Calvin ToNov 25, 2011 at 10:38 AM
Androutsos: "I'm a faculty member here. I don't want to work at a crappy university with a bad reputation."Calvin ToNov 25, 2011 at 10:38 AM
Audience comment: "we are ignoring 97% of our population" by moving ahead with this so fast.Calvin ToNov 25, 2011 at 10:07 AM
Driscoll: re Patriot Act, "our own government can also do these things."Calvin ToNov 25, 2011 at 9:58 AM
BUT "patriot act or not, doesn't matter" - there are always ways to get at infoCalvin ToNov 25, 2011 at 9:33 AM
Problems being cited: costs - what does it really take to do various things, can we hold a vendor to be accountable?Calvin ToNov 25, 2011 at 9:32 AM
Lesser explaining the pitfalls of #Rye's current email server - no calendars, undelivered emails, lack of accountability, accessibilitytheryersonianvia twitter on Nov 25, 2011 at 9:31 AM
"Our email has always been an issue... Collaborative tools [are] severely lacking" - Androutsostheryersonianvia twitter on Nov 25, 2011 at 9:21 AM
Lesser's response: at the end of the day, Google and Ryerson must comply with the law of the land. The reality is, we can't tell anybody about these secret data requests.Calvin ToNov 25, 2011 at 10:16 AM
Androutsos: Rmail works, but it's not just about sending a msg. It's also about collaborative tools, things that Rmail doesn't offer.Calvin ToNov 25, 2011 at 10:19 AM
Lesser: "If Ryerson's Rmail is so bad, something has to be done about it. Why are we just sitting back, right?"Calvin ToNov 25, 2011 at 10:18 AM
Lesser explains that Google's cloud server may actually be more secure than the average desktop harddrive. #RUGooglerstheryersonianvia twitter on Nov 25, 2011 at 10:25 AM