OLDaily, by Stephen Downes

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October 11, 2010

CBC Bans Use of Creative Commons Music on Podcasts
Michael Geist, Weblog, October 11, 2010.

Though several days of discussions may have yielded the point that the CBC (the national Canadian broadcasting channel) prohibition ought apply only to music licensed with a Creative Commons Non-Commercial (CC-NC) license, one wonders about the initial blanket ban and whether that was the intent in the first place. Because there is a great deal of Creative Commons music that is perfectly appropriate for CBC use, specific, all that music licensed without the Non-Commercial condition. This license allows commercial use. There has been quite a bit of coverage in the open content community (see here) but none of it tells us where the prohibition came from in the first place. Could there be any doubt that the misinformation originated in the offices of a commercial music publisher? Because the Creative Commons license allowing commercial use is like a dagger to the heart of the publishers, who rely on exclusive access to market to attract musical acts.

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When Generosity Hurts: Bill Gates, Public School Teachers and the Politics of Humiliation
Henry A. Giroux, TruthOut, October 11, 2010.

files/images/100510giroux2.jpg, size: 26978 bytes, type:  image/jpeg Henry Giroux forges a link between Foucault and education with this long exegesis on the politics of humiliation applied generally and to educators particularly. "Anyone who does not believe in the pursuit of material self-interest, unbridled competition and market-driven values is a proper candidate to be humiliated," he writes.

"Beneath its discourse of urgency, altruism and political purity parading in a messianic language of educational reform and a politics of generosity are the same old and discredited neoliberal policies that cheerfully serve corporate interests: privatization, union busting, competition as the only mode of motivation, an obsession with measurement, a relentless attack on teacher autonomy, the weakening of tenure, stripping educational goals of public values, defining teacher quality in purely instrumental terms, an emphasis on authoritative modes of management and a mindless obsession with notions of pedagogy that celebrate memorization and teach to the test." Via TonNet.

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Disaggregate power not people – Part two: now with more manifesto
Dave Cormier, Dave's Educational Blog, October 11, 2010.

Dave Cormier's "more manifesto" captures accurately what I think the 'personal' in 'personal learning environment' means. "We need to remember that the ‘personal' is about emancipation, not about being alone. Learners need to remember that the connections are still needed, they just need to go out and make them, they will not be provided. The side effect to the power granted, is that simply 'doing the work' (read: posting my response to my blog) is not the end of the work. The work needs to be connected to others, learning is still about people." (NB: it's not that 'learning is about people' - you can still learn without people, but not without putting your learning out there into some sort of reactive environment, to get feedback and correction, and to experience the power of influencing that environment, and for most cases, this reactive environment consists in large part of people.)

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A Convergence of User-based Design and Design-based Research
Steve Covello, On Instructional Design, October 11, 2010.

All I ever ask of people is that they observe for themselves. That's why I really appreciate this post from Steve Covello. An acknowledged sceptic about the usefulness of emergent knowledge, he nonetheless looked for it in a recent sequence of design-based research evaluations. In addition to a really nice detailed description of design-based research, which is worth the price of admission alone, Covello decides that there may be some value to emergent patterns after all. As a bonus, he provides a nifty slide show in the middle of his post constructed with the nextgen gallery plugin for jQuery. Oh, and check out the tagline on this design blog. Learning by doing. It's happening out there, with or without educators.

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Tracking devices used in school badges
Jennifer Radcliffe, Houston Chronicle, October 11, 2010.

files/images/260xStory.jpg, size: 16217 bytes, type:  image/jpeg RFID tags have been in the mix for a few years now, and though they barely qualify as educational technology, have been making an appearance in schools. A couple things about this story caught my eye. One was the way they were presented - "the same technology used to monitor cattle" - seems calculated to engender a negative reaction to them. Never mind that they weren't used in anything as little as ten years ago. I find it more interesting that the students have all been issued ID badges with their names and pictures (photo). The second was the justification that was offered for their use. "The district uses the tracking system to check on the whereabouts of students counted absent by classroom teachers. Oftentimes, the student is somewhere else on campus, allowing the district to recover $194,000 in state funding..."

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Copyright 2010 Stephen Downes Contact: stephen@downes.ca

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