In the US, instructors sometimes ask one or two students to take notes for a given lecture, in view of releasing the lecture notes later on for the rest of the class. Such students are sometimes called "scribes". Is "scribe" a pejorative or a neutral term? If pejorative, is there any neutral or positive term? (I am asking as in French "scribe" can sound somewhat derogatory)
In all of the academic usages with which I am familiar, scribe is almost entirely a neutral term.
Every student must act as a scribe for at least one lecture this term.
The one exception to this requires further elaboration to indicate that what one is doing is merely "reproductive" instead of "synthetic":
He slavishly acted a scribe copying down the professor's words without understanding them.
However, such usage is generally written and somewhat formal (see how far you have to go to put it into a negative context).
"Scribe" is definitely hierarchical: some trust from "superiors", but not their peer. And then if everyone is a scribe, the "trust" becomes uncertain. E.g., is it just that the instructor doesn't want to spend their own energy? Or is it that the instructor has confidence that all the students can make reasonable transcripts?