Gonna look you right in the face,
Better get yourself together darlin’,
Join the human race,
How in the world you gonna see,
Laughin’ at fools like me,
Who on earth d’you think you are,
A super star,
Well, right you are.
~ John Lennon, “Instant Karma”
It’s not nice, I know, to gloat over another person’s misfortune, but in this case I think it’s alright to marvel at the wonders of karma, or at least that what goes around occasionally comes around too. Last month I blogged about a website called AutoAdmit, where some law students say anonymous comments cost them jobs. The owner of the site, Anthony Ciolli, refused to remove those comments after the students, citing freedom of speech as the reason.
Funny how the worm turns. Via Majikethise comes news that Ciolli was recently turned down by a law firm himself.
The Law Blog has learned that law firm Edwards Angell Palmer & Dodge rescinded its job offer to Anthony Ciolli, the 3L at Penn Law who resigned as “Chief Education Director” of AutoAdmit in March. He resigned in the wake of a WaPo exposé on how the site in part served as a platform for attacks and defamatory remarks about female law students, among others (see our earlier post here).
…Ciolli took time from working on final exams to talk to the Law Blog. “Three years of legal education has been wasted because of an unmoderated message board,” he said, adding, “The timing is absolutely horrible.” The 23-year-old, who contributes to First Movers, a blog written by law students and graduates, added that “I don’t know what I’m going to do next.”
Despite stepping down from his post at AutoAdmit, Ciolli’s reputation for facilitating the sullying of others’ reputations apparently followed him.
Despite initially blaming his misfortune on “an unmoderated message board” the young law grad soon pointed his finger at another law student whom he claimed sullied his reputation (and who was herself attacked on his site).
My impression from the phone conversation was that this was the chronology:
1) Jill Filipovic from Feministe tells WSJ that I worked at EAP&D
2) WSJ reporter calls EAP&D, and the firm says I had my offer rescinded.
3) WSJ reporter emails me saying they’re going to run a story on it tomorrow.
Believe me, the last thing I wanted was this to be public. I just want to be left alone.
But the timeline doesn’t lie. The firm said “No thanks,” to Ciolli about a week and a half before the WSJ reporter calls Ms. Filipovic. As for Ciolli, the law students who complained about AutoAdmit probaby wanted not to be slagged in public, and to be left alone. They didn’t get it. Either.
Like I said, I know it’s wrong, especially after all my talk about empathy, but I tend to empathize with the students burned by AutoAdmit. So, I won’t cheer as the “culture of cruelty” I mentioned earlier devours yet another of its own. But I won’t shed any tears either.