Criticism for criticisms sake?

Stephen, really, do you think that’s fair?

“a prize system guaranteed to skew the results”

How’s that going to happen? Nominations are public, voting is open and public, any blog on any platform can enter? Do you think people are really going to be entering for the prizes… they haven’t before?

“Accept the prize and either blow off your blog after a year or start paying”

That’s twaddle! You could give the prize to a friend or colleague, use it to play around with WPMU or just not take it… I think that shows a bit of ignorance on your part about what Campus actually is – it’s not for personal blogging.

And even if it was you can Import/Export the entire site or individual blogs whenever you like – so there’s no tie in. In fact, fuck it, let’s make each license 3 years long? That better?

“it is really bad form for that sponsor to publicly announce his own nominations

Not if all nominations are public, it isn’t. Why don’t I get to play? I have no vote! Come on, a little more qualification Mr Downes.

And finally, the awards aren’t tied to Edublogs, they are supported by Edublogs having been run, hosted, managed, promoted in the main (along with the assistance of Josie) by me for the last 5 years… and did we look for other sponsors? Yes we did. A lot. Ask Josie. How many did we get? Zero.

While I admire your dedication and talent and appreciate your work Stephen, sometimes you come over like a miserable old grouch, intent on knocking anything that has any commercial interest whatsoever.

While you may be able to sit in a comparable government / conference-speaker funded ivory tower, I’m responsible for not only me and my family but Edublogs staff, users and over quarter of a million edublogs. Which, might I remind you, are all given away for free, at a cost, which I personally front up, of almost ten thousand US$ per month (and that’s just hosting!)

How do we manage to provide free services, support and assistance to so many people – by having a commercial arm. If that arm benefits from giving away sites for free (the whole idea is to raise awareness of the product, not tie people down) then is there so much wrong with that? If that commercial arm can support the operation (for no financial gain) of something like the Eddies for as many years as it has done, is that bad?

5 replies on “Criticism for criticisms sake?”

  1. James,

    Just as I didn’t understand the public critique of the Edublogs Magazine when you tried starting it, I just don’t understand this kind of reaction.

    I was a community organizer for nineteen years before I became a teacher. In each organization where I worked, we developed the only multi-ethnic organization in the area. Invariably, though, there would be people (who typically would never have done anything approaching the nitty gritty of organizing in their lives) who would note which ethnic groups weren’t represented in the organization and criticize us for not being inclusive enough (though not do anything to help reach out to that constituency).

    Criticism you receive often reminds me of that experience.

    Keep up the great work!

    And I’d say the same thing even if you hadn’t nominated my blog!


  2. I’m not being a twit. I’ve always supported the awards and would not criticize just for the sake of being critical.

    Instead of simply reacting, try taking the perspective that I am a friend who has pointed out something wrong with the way the awards have been set up this year.

    When the organizer of the awards is invested in the outcome of the awards, in any way, then the neutrality of the awards is compromised. That’s not just me being a twit – that’s the way it is.

  3. p.s. “I’m responsible for not only me and my family but Edublogs staff, users and over quarter of a million edublogs.” –> doesn’t give you carte blanche.

    I have a family to feed too, and I worked in abject poverty for very many years to be able to be in the position I am today. So please don’t get all huffy on me – nobody has any special position of privilege here.

  4. Two people I really like, in this kind of a spat, is rather sad. I’m sorry that Stephen was in a grumpy mood today.

    Keep up the good work James; I know how long and hard you’ve worked to create a successful business while sticking to your principles.

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