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January 19, 2007

Comments

Kimberly Moritz

Christian, Thank you for the support. I do appreciate it, even expected it of my fellow bloggers, when I posted that I had to include a disclaimer. It's interesting to me that others in our district are now asking the questions that I've considered since my very first post. And you nail it--write like you're writing for the district newsletter. Only better than the newsletter, it's a more frequent and immediate way to influence thinking, my goal since the beginning.

Rick

Great post here. My bottom line for blogging is that it's not a place to air out dirty laundry. If I'm going to post about something about somebody else, it will always be in a positive light. Anything less than that should be taken up privately. And I don't think it's EVER a place to post students' names. I won't even relay a situation at school because there's a chance that somebody will be able to connect the dots.

Blogging has responsibilities. Abdicate them, and you may find yourself in serious trouble.

John  Powers

This http://www.alternet.org/rights/46925/ is a bit off topic, but seemed worthwhile bring up anyway.

The gist is that in a class of 12 year olds the computer a substitute teacher was using went into an endless loop of porn. She was charged and convicted of "corrupting the morals of minors" and faces 40 years in prison.

The article left me with questions. But from what I gather it was an older school machine not behind a firewall. The teacher claimed that the porno came up because the computer was infected with malware and a security expert who carefully examined the computer was convinced of her innocence.

Wow, this story rang so many alarm bells. I'm so not geeky, but following IT discussions on edu-blogs and blogs in the non-profit world I see a lot of evangelizing about open source. Some of the reasoning has to do with the way that budgets tend to work in these environments. In this case for example the security license for the school's computers had expired and so they were unprotected. On the other hand reading experiences of places going open source, I understand it's not easy.

The suggestions you put up about blogging are solid. But I can't help thinking about the "permanent record" thing and the accumulation of garbage in garbage out. There's stuff on all of our "permanent records" we didn't put there, it's not ours. Not all of it is like the malware on the teacher's computer but some of it is exactly like that. Things like comments on a blog are tricky too.

I have a feeling that the Internet is going to change our ideas about "permanent records." In the meantime steering clear of the hazards isn't always easy. And it isn't only an individual's job. Of course we should avoid the obvious hazards, but there are hidden ones out there too.

Miguel Guhlin

I agree with both of you! However, isn't it dangerous to apply Scoble's wisdom and observations to education settings? While some education administrators (supes) are working to apply business principles to K-12 education, the reality is that they are being selective about messing with education culture...they may be trying to bring about change with business principles but without full commitment to transforming the education culture.

Simply, if blogging hasn't quite caught on in business, it's less likely to catch on as a transplant from business to K-12 education.

What are your thoughts?

Miguel Guhlin
Around the Corner-MGuhlin.net
http://www.mguhlin.net

Christian

I'm going to thank all of you for adding your voices/ideas, and pushing my brain as well.

I'm going to tackle Miguel's question in particular.

Scoble's blogging ideas -- while focused in the business world -- is hardly limited to that context. He's not talking about for-profit strategies, per se, but 'blog smart' tactics regardless of your setting. He's pushing people to value the exchange of ideas, rather than the tradition of experts handing off their headlines. To this I say that there is tremendous overlap for education. For all of life/society, really.

It's not about 'business' but about 'conversation'. The vast majority of teachers and students who will blog will create limited value for audiences in the long-term. Perhaps the 'process' alone allows a high degree of accomplishment, but ultimately you face the fact that the blog enters a public conversation...and that it's not just a matter of type/publish/read/comment. The nuances are far more dynamic. And for this, I say that Scoble offers the best challenge to those in all fields who are going to 'go there'.

The technology of blogging is only the first question. The purpose of blogging is far more valuable. And the ultimate development of one's tone/voice and ability to be part of something larger, a constellation of global voices, is what makes it ultimately valuable on both sides.

Blogging by CEO's hasn't caught on. But blogging by people who 'happen' to be in business -- and have real lives -- has certainly caught on. A matter of what realm their blogging from, perhaps.

Thanks, Miguel! Cheers, Christian

Chris Craft

A new discussion on this topic is going on through my blog, I'd love to hear your thoughts!

http://opensource.christophercraft.com/?p=119

Yours,

Chris Craft

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