blogging, humour, lessons, pairadimes, technology

Congratulations on being duped

Congratulations edublogger, you’ve been duped!

Here is a wonderful badge to put on your website.

The Top 100 Duped Educators Award

Now all you have to do is link back to our website and you get to share this wonderful badge on your blog. That’s right, all it costs is a link to our site where we advertise college degrees or not-so-free ‘free educational resources’.

You see, we are “an organization dedicated to online education and learning technology and would like to recognize the top resources on the Internet that parallel the same goals of promoting the expansion of learning into new and innovative formats.  Your website has shown its commitment to the advancement of education and this award is intended to commend your efforts.”

Translation: We create a fancy award badge, tell you that you are great, then you freely put a link to our blog or website on the sidebar, and thus every page, of your blog. We get free links and an improved Google/search engine ranking and you get a shiny badge.

Thanks for playing along.

8 comments on “Congratulations on being duped

  1. Thank you for raising this point – can’t ever be brought to the attention of educators enough.

    I see it happening more and more and more…. soft marketing. Playing on people’s egos too. I’ve written about it but it is maddening when hard working, earnest educators (I’m not ashamed, I consider myself one) produce thoughtful lists which are overlooked by the spam of many sites that quickly throw something together and then push, push around the netiverse only for “attention” and not any sincere wish for good information to be shared.

    It makes you wonder how anyone on the internet given the lackluster response of educators to these “cretins”, can really share any reliable information, especially to teachers new to the online world. Makes it even harder to wade through the crap. Here is a recent example – onlinedegrees(dot)org’s “Top 25 ESL blogs for teachers and students” -they keep shoving out half hearted, hardly researched lists, all in the name of selling campus programs. And then yes, we have the “contests” with tens of thousands of vanity hits while the blog carnivals get a few hundred at best….

    End of my tirade. Thanks for posting this in an engaging manner.


  2. You know – I looked at that list a few times yesterday and I kept thinking “Online Degrees?” wouldn’t I consider email from them SPAM? Now it all makes perfect sense.

    I’m fashioning a super shiny badge of my own right now.

  3. So, Stephen Downes wrote about this post, and in response to a comment he got from Doug Peterson, (whose own post response is linked above in comment/trackback 3), Stephen created his own badge:

    Downes' Free Learning badge

    I just shared my thoughts on Doug’s post and thought I’d share them here too:

    It was neat to see this evolve, and yet I find myself uninterested in Stephen’s badge. I’m a huge fan of Stephen and his is one of only two newsletters I get, the other one being George Siemens, via email… but ‘wearing a badge’ to benefit from google popularity in the name of ‘free learning’ doesn’t sit well with me for some reason? Still, I respect that what it is, is completely out in the open… no one is getting duped:-)

  4. It did evolve a little bit and that’s kind of cool. Your original post raised a very important point and I think that that’s the true learning from all of this. Had Stephen not read your content and I hadn’t read Stephen’s, this whole discourse wouldn’t have happened.

  5. I still have my “Top 5%” badge from 1995, though I display such things in a very deep folder inside the bowels of a creaky hard drive.

    It’s on old game, older than the web.

    Nice badge anyhow

  6. Doug,
    We are indeed having a learning conversation, and your blog post exemplified that your choice to ‘wear’ Stephen’s badge on your blog was a thoughtful process.

    A “Top 5%” from 1995 is iconic! I didn’t even know what the internet was in 1995. I’m in no way opposed to badges, but these top lists that David mentions above, made up or even copied just to sell campus programs bother me.

    It’s all a learning process, but if we are going to preach to kids the importance of being net savvy, should we practice that ourselves?

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