Want to join the conversation?

I am in the process of planning two symposia submissions for ALT-C 2010.

If you were aware of the VLE is Dead Symposium from ALT-C 2009 then you will know that these can be not only great fun, but interesting, useful and informative.

So what are the two?

Are you stealing stuff?

So there you are creating a presentation, learning resources, handouts, learning objects, handouts…

Now in those is there any stuff, such as text, images, audio, video that you didn’t create, have “taken” from somewhere else (such as a website).

Did you think it was okay, as it was “for education” and it’s not as though you took it, you merely made a digital copy.

In this digital age it is much easier to create interactive, colourful, exciting learning resources. It is also just as easy to infringe copyright.

Should we as learning technologists be turning a blind eye to this, to increase the usage of learning technologies, should we be the guardians of digital content, should we be ensuring that infractions don’t happen?

This debate will look at the issue of copyright in a digital age and the role of users of learning technologies and learning technologists.

Best thing since the printing press!

Alternative title: Do you like books or do you like reading?

e-Books and e-Book Readers are going to be big! Apple have announced the iPad, Amazon have their Kindle, many other manufacturers are offering a wealth of e-Book Readers. Likewise publishers are now offering many more titles in the e-book format.

We know that some people like physical books, well if you like reading and e-Book Readers offer the reader a lot more than a traditional book.

With an e-Book Reader you can carry more than one book, you can carry a lot more than one book. You can carry documents too. The screen is reasonably large enough too so that it is easy to read. The battery life is pretty good too, much better than many laptops or a phones. With devices such as the iPad you can view video or play audio.

e-Books are not about replacing books, in the same way that online news sites don’t totally replace physical newspapers, or YouTube replaces TV.

Likewise e-Book Readers don’t replace computers; what both e-Books and e-Book Readers do is allow reading to happen at a time and place to suit the reader.

However is this all just hype? A marketing dream that will never bear fruit and e-Book Readers and iPads will be placed in dusty cupboards.

Will e-Book DRM make it impossible or difficult for educators to use e-Books effectively?

This debate will discuss the emergence of the e-Book as a new format to enhance and enrich learning. Is it the best thing to happen to reading since the printing press, or is it just a big hyped bubble that will burst?


If you are interested in being part of this then please let me know either by e-mail or adding a comment below.

I would suggest if you haven’t done so already, watch the VLE is Dead debate , as this will give you an idea of the format; likewise read this blog post on how I feel about conference symposia and how the symposium will be run.

I am looking for people to have different views to my own. I am also looking for a chair for each discussion

Deadline for submission to ALT is the 15th February, therefore I need to know as soon as possible.

Photo source.

12 thoughts on “Want to join the conversation?”

  1. Very interested in the “are you stealing stuff?” one from an OER perspective. It’s one of my favourite soundbites that the biggest single threat to UK HE would is a class-action copyright infringement claim from a consortium of publishers.

    Music Technology as an emerging discipline has a lot to teach the greater academic world about this. We’ve been having the same debates about sampling, bricolage and creativity for years now.

  2. Hi James,
    Fascinating that you pick on these two topics.

    Copyright and it’s infringement by teachers has been a pet subject of mine for a while now.

    My school is in the process of becoming an
    Academy and have had discussions around the iPad only today.

  3. Love the idea of the ‘Are you stealing stuff?’ symposium. Raising awareness of copyright through learning technology staff development is an important part of my current work, although having previously worked as a film and media teacher, I have a very good appreciation of the challenges teacher’s face ;o)

  4. As a teacher I “steal” stuff, does that make me a criminal?
    I feel that it helps and benefits my students and (to some extent) helps sell the original version too.

    Said it now, wait for the wrath of the Copyright Gods.

  5. Very interested in particating in eBook debate. Am a publisher of eBooks for schools (i-stars.co.uk) so been watching closely developments in schools and effects of digital texts on literacy and reading.

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