Coursera Hits 1 Million Students, With Udacity Close Behind

Aug 13, 2012
Commentary by Stephen Downes

Not that we're keeping track of this sort of thing. But before people get excited by these numbers, let me point out that having huge centralized providers is a weakness, not a strength. It's easy to build a platform and market it to people; companies have been doing that since the early days of the internet. It's hard to put a learning and networking tool into the hands of the people. This is such a challenging idea that my employers (not to mention most of the rest of the world) cannot even grasp it. When I think 'MOOC' I am thinking "individual people nwith their own piece of a learning network", not signups on a web form. But hey, signups are easy to count; that's hpow you get the millions of dollars of seed funding.

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