Saturday, September 20, 2008

CCK08 comment on blog post / FOC08 open vs closed communities

Darn it. I see a really interesting partial post by Nellie on Generosity - someone I greatly admire and who's great effort in organizing the WikiEducator Council election should be recognized and celebrated. And, bang - sorry you can't read the whole post or add a comment.

This leads to some thinking, and I hope, some further discussion about making and breaking connections (CCK08). And open / closed communities (FOC08). What's in it for me? If I block comments utilizing the provided screening devices, then I don't have to deal with the spam and annoying poor connectivism hygiene of others.

In a community where the primary communication is via discussion forums, there is the problem of the Commons - in a large open discussion, everyone is a user or a guest and no one assumes responsible for the ongoing sustainability of the resource. They post what they want, even if it means others are turned off by the frequency and/or tone of their posting. We have seen this to some extent in the CCK08 course in the Moodle discussions. A more closely held, closed community is better at dealing with this format. All participants accept and share responsibility.

Well, yes but... Houshuang says "I really want my research to be available to everyone ... approval is taking too long, so I am also publishing the files here on my blog. ... Creative Commons BY license. I am eager that as many people as possible that would be interested in this topic are able to come across it, so feel free to share it with others that are interested. I am also very happy to receive feedback and other perspectives"

This may be representative of most blogging - intended as primary personal statements, observations and links to other information of interest. A community that is built around blogs can be very open and inclusive as each member controls their own space within the community. In FOC08 and the blogs associated with CCK08, the openness is clearly a benefit. There have been protests from the community when registration is required to view and/or comment on blog entries. Openness is not only desirable, but expected, at least among the blog commenting participants in CCK08.

Returning to Nellie's post on Generosity, I actually have a Ning account and reluctantly logged in to read the post and comment. I wouldn't do this for just anyone. Nellie is very special.

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