This national issue is relevant for my local blog because West Michigan is home to several liberal arts colleges that have done well in rankings, Calvin, Hope, and Aquinas among them.
It might seem like a bad PR move to stop providing survey data to a major media outlet that annually provides this resource for students and their parents to make college selections. The issue could be seen as one relating to reputation as well as a key driver of applications. However, I think the move is good for several reasons:
The college presidents say they will put together their own criteria and possibly have a third party gather it for a more meaningful list. US News' editor has said he would welcome that. Either way, I applaud colleges in this case of ignoring the media. It's the better PR move, for both ethical and strategic reasons.