Respect the privacy of students remotely and stop using harmful proctoring software

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The summer semester is current fully online at the University of Ottawa, and the fall semester will likely be too.

There have been reports that the university is allowing professors to use software such as Respondus Lockdown to monitor students' faces and private homes while they take exams. Thereby:

  • Requiring students to give up privacy with little power to resist.
  • Requiring students to obtain webcams, hardware and faster internet - many with already strained resources.
  • Requiring students to install closed source software they may not trust, which may not support their operating system of choice.
  • Requiring, from some reports about the software, students to keep a constant video feed of their face. Potentially triggering anxiety or impacting performance.

We are calling on the University to:

  • Ban the use of surveillance techniques that extend beyond information obtained from normal web browser.
  • Ban the use of a live video and/or audio feed for the purposes of monitoring a student.

The University has stated many times that they are committed to doing what they can during this online transition. Please, respect the basic privacy rights of your students in this time.