One of the ways that I share my excitement for educational technology is through graduate online course development. I write ed tech courses for Pearson Higher Ed. This spring and summer I have been busy with a course featuring Web 2.0 technology. I wrote the course and then talked with Pearson's video guru, Vikki Myers, about video content. During our conversation I listed my Who's Who of ed tech Web 2.0 - Wes Fryer; Women of Web 2.0 (Jennifer Wagner, Vicki Davis, Cheryl Oakes, Sharon Peters); Will Richardson; Dave Warlick; Joselyn Todd; and Bill Ferriter. "By the way," I mentioned casually, "most of these people are sure to be at NECC. And they will probably be present for the edu blogger con."
My project manager and her supervisor loved the idea of talking to all these people at one time. So they started making calls and got permission to attend the blogger con and film it. I was so thrilled to be part of the project I could hardly contain myself. My husband listened to my delight bubbling over and even encouraged me to fly out to be there. Unfortunately it was the same day as my daughter's birthday party and I missed her birthday for NECC last year. So I didn't pursue it, but I could hardly wait for the blogger con to arrive and see if there was any buzz on the Web about it. Little did I know the buzz would be about my "great idea" and whether it was great or the ruin of the blogger con.
Some bloggers were mad that Pearson showed up, accusing them(us) of stealing ideas and changing the climate at the blogger con. I was crushed. I only wanted more teachers to be inspired by the great ideas of my favorite ed techies and now it seemed like it had all gone wrong.
I talked to Elaine Roberts the next day and she assured me that blogger con and the conversations there were awesome! Later that day her comments on Wes Fryer's podcast seemed to quiet the storm. I hope in the end this will continue debate about intellectual property, learning communities and commercial enterprises and maybe it will be a great idea after all.