By Callum Florance
Pepper Grinder is a Peppercorn series providing news and reporting relevant to ANU law students and beyond via Peppercorn’s Facebook Page and biannual Magazine.
*Data updated 22 October 2023 and 24 October 2023*
The people have spoken! Now that current ANU Vice-Chancellor Brian Schmidt is stepping down and Genevieve Bell is taking up the reigns from 1 January 2024, it's time the ANU community had a think about what we should rename the ANU Schmidtposting Facebook group to, or whether change is necessary at all.
Woroni reported on this in February 2023 when Brian Schmidt first announced that he was stepping down from the role, explaining that "[i]mpacts for students at ANU may include the seismic renaming of ANU Schmidtposting (to be confirmed)'. Is now the time for the 'seismic renaming' of the infamous Schmidtposting?
What is ANU Schmidtposting?
ANU Schmidtposting is a Facebook group that serves as the main ANU feed for all things student politics, news, memes, photography, lost items/pets, course complaints, anything you can think of.
Previously named ANU Stalkerspace, Schmidtposting is the digital Union Court or Kambri Precinct for over 22,000+ current and former ANU students,
Name change? Yes/No
I put it a poll to the ANU Schmidtposters on whether there should be a name change at all, and if so, what the name change should be.
Woroni and ANU Observer both made similar puns for Bell's announcement as the next ANU Vice-Chancellor in September/October: 'Ringing the Bell' or 'The Bells Ring for Change'... maybe this could be an inspiration? Or maybe some other pun would work?
As of the posting of this article, there are a number of submissions for alternative names:
ANU Bell Curve
ANU with Bells on!
ANU Belly of the Beast
ANU Bell Ringer
ANU Bells Angels
All of these were competing against the status quo option: 'No change - Schmidtposting is his legacy'.
Are Schmidtposters ready for change?
As of the posting of this article (7:10pm Friday 20 October 2023, 6:50am Sunday 22 October 2023, 1:50pm Tuesday 24 October 2023), the status quo option is in the lead with 61% (65%) of the cumulative vote. This is ahead of the ANU Bell Curve with 27% (21%) of the vote, ANU UnderBelly with 6%, and ANU DingDong with 6% (5%) (4%) of the vote.
It is unlikely that the existence of several alternatives is leading to vote-splitting amongst those who want to see a change, as the cumulative vote for alternatives is still far less than the status quo option.
The status quo option might be appealing to many of the former or older ANU students who fondly remember Schmidt, or ones who wish to hang on to the meme-worthy name.
The world has also changed so much over the past few years, including our university experience shifting from in-person, to online, to hybrid, and back to in-person. This shift to normality could be factoring in to a general want of stability, a way to hold on to something stable and well-worn as we steady our feet.
Maybe it is too soon to be thinking about a name change. Maybe it is the beacon of stability we need right now. Maybe Schmidtposting is just the perfect meme. For those who want a name change, ANU DingDong may be some time away.
Results as at 7:10pm Friday 20 October 2023:
Results as at 6:50am Sunday 22 October 2023:
Results as at 1:50pm Tuesday 24 October 2023: