Cornell Fetch is a website that launched a week ago. In its short life span, it's racked up over a million page views, media coverage from the Daily Mail, Jezebel, and TFM, and multiple MySQL injection attacks. The founders, who have somehow remained anonymous throughout the backlash, claim they've received death threats. Their handiwork has been called "childish, objectifying and completely unnecessary" by the Cornell student paper.
None of this is even remotely surprising. Cornell Fetch seems to have been created expressly to piss off everyone in Ithaca (and beyond): The site is a Cornell "Hot or Not," allowing you to rank and compare the school's undergraduate sorority sisters. This data has since been collected into a top-ten list filled with girls, their sorority affiliation, and a Facebook profile photo. After an unclear amount of time, the founders say they'll release more data that "will illustrate the positive and negative stereotypes associated with different sororities." It'll be "even more controversial and enlightening."
If this all sounds familiar, then congrats, you know the history of Facebook. Facebook began as "Facesmash," which allowed Harvard undergrads to rank each other—before school administrators quickly shut things down. Cornell's university officials haven't done the same for Cornell Fetch. Although several have expressed concerns.
Besides the unwelcome off-semester attention for Cornell, this all seems pretty icky. Obviously, guys (and girls) objectify the opposite sex. Sometimes, they rank. But to expose essentially private sorority girls to national attention—just to prove a stupid fucking point about "sorority heirarchies," which everyone already knows about—is wrong. This site is unnecessary. And it's not nearly as clever as it thinks it is.