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Why Do You Ask?

From asking questions that require an answer To asking questions that require a conversation.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Boneheaded Decision OR Just Another Brick in the Wall

Look at the Top 10 Words Right Now in Twitter (2008-06-19 21:08:22):

ice, mars, best, water, iste, ready, work, google, usa, today. See http://tinyurl.com/2jzqq2

Mars rover has found ice created from water.  Pretty cool (pun intended).

Best, work, today, ready are innocuous.

Google and USA - makes sense that these words would be used frequently everyday to me, based on the people who use Twitter.

But ISTE.  C'mon.  It's an education-related term.  Who truly cares what ISTE is outside of the education technology world.  No one.

And that's the point.

The reason for the talk is that ISTE is denying attenders the opportunity to record (audio/video) of any presentation without the presenters approval.  I'm good with that; after all the material they share may be their livelihood, or even better, they may have already made plans to have the session recorded.  [I believe I read that Will was planning to Ustream his session].

But ISTE thinks it is now Major League Baseball and decides to do the "...no recording or rebroadcast of this game, without the express written consent of Major League Baseball, is prohibited..." announcement.  Since the advent of BetaMax, how's that working out for ya MLB?

I first read about this issue from Wes.

Last year, when NECC was in Atlanta, the Blogger Cafe was all the rage.  I followed the conference everyday from the education writers I enjoy reading.  I got a sense of the atmosphere.  I was sorry I wasn't there (only 90 minutes from my house). 

I decided during last year's conference that I wanted to go to San Antonio, but since that decision my niece decided she would was getting married in early July (in Charlotte, NC), and I would rather be at her wedding.  I would like to invoke the digital divide conversation, in that I can't afford to do both in the same week, but I'll refrain.

Besides, methought, I could catch the rerun.  I could actually have the opportunity to LEARN from the world's best and brightest because the technology that will be discussed at NECC is being used by the best and brightest - so I, along with thousands of others, could "attend" and support the work of colleagues. 

Guess not.

Other have written, and will continue to write, about this issue.  You can follow the conversation at Miguel's Diigo page. 

The only way I could possibly be assuaged, is if ISTE recorded all the sessions themselves, then provided each session, free of charge, as a service to educators (service is what a non-profit is all about, right?).  The long tail approach could be to gain membership, even though Gary Stager might oppose that view (read his comments from June 19).

Speaking of Gary, he sent me a tweet with two great comments on this issue.

How about going to a conference to listen, talk and learn? Why should we all become broadcasters or stenographers? What do we lose?

I'm equally concerned about liveblogging. I've been savaged for misquotes and comments out-of-context. You can't unring that bell

My response is Gary should WANT TO BE RECORDED is to avoid the misquotes, and the recording is for those of us who are not able to attend, who can rely on nothing more than the misquotes.  We all shouldn't become broadcasters, but perhaps some of the better ones could.

So, ISTE has ticked off a fair amount of Ed Tech people. Not enough to shut down Twitter like an Apple conference, but enough.  It would seem that ISTE might want to reconsider their position.  They'll never rescind this one, that would mean admitting wrong, and God forbid that would occur from anyone not running for President these days.  But perhaps they'll have an answer before 2009, or perhaps a boycott might do the trick in D.C.

Anybody else who presents at NECC have these kind of guts...from Miguel Guhlin.

In fact, I'm so disappointed that I regret that I provided ANY
assistance in helping ISTE advertise the NECC Conference, a part that
involved having bloggers write about NECC 2008 event!

I will NOT present at NECC 2009 or any other ISTE affiliated event
UNLESS this wrong-headed policy is changed. I urge you to do the same.

Then again, maybe all this prohibition is just an advertising campaign to get some buzz for the conference.  Maybe it is ISTE's attempt to prove that "any publicity is good publicity."  Kind of like Coke Classic in '80s.  Wait, that didn't work out that well.

You know what our students do when they are told they can't do something.  I have the image of Seinfeld sneaking into the theater with a Handicam to pirate the presentation, so the movie can be sold on the EdTech underground.  Perhaps another reason why more students should be invited to NECC.  If they did, I could catch that killer panel discussion on YouTube, with the "We Don't Need No Education" song from Pink Floyd as the background music.

In the World of Education, this is just another Brick In The Wall.

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