9843RE: [WWWEDU] Any thoughts on how I should respond to Wired?
- Aug 29, 2007Andy,
Educators are often accused of having no sense of humor. But you do -- you
understood right away what Wired was up to. It was Wired's readership,
supposedly a sophisticated group, that didn't get the intended humor.
If you "call them out," you live up to the educator stereotype and put
yourself on the same level as the vandals. What is needed - and I'm not
quite sure how to do it - is to point out how much you appreciate Wired's
attempt at humor, comment on the seriousness of the problem in general
terms, and find a way to laugh at those who didn't get it, couching the
consequences in the most humorous manner possible, perhaps by publishing
some of the more moronic offerings, presenting the material in such a way
that the point becomes obvious: it's not funny.
Easier said than done, I know. Any creative people out there?
(whose creativity quotient is low at the moment)
From: email@example.com [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org] On Behalf Of
Sent: Wednesday, August 29, 2007 3:04 PM
To: WWWEDU List
Subject: [WWWEDU] Any thoughts on how I should respond to Wired?
I'm in a bit of a quandary. Late last week, there was
a flurry of activity on the social network site I set
up, Stop Cyberbullying
(http://stopcyberbul <http://stopcyberbullying.ning.com> lying.ning.com),
which I created
to give teachers a place to share best practices on
bullying education. In a matter of hours we were
flooded with a number of new users who were
vandalizing the community in extremely obnoxious ways.
The reason for the vandalism? Well, it turns out the
latest issue of Wired Magazine decided to name the
Stop Cyberbullying community as "one of the six lamest
social networks" on the Internet.
Here's what they had to say about us:
Stop Cyberbullying (stopcyberbullying.ning.com)
What it is: A safe place for frank discussions on the
topic of Internet bullying
Who you'll meet: Pussies
What's annoying: Dare to call them pussies, and
they'll gang up on you mercilessly.
Now I know this was intended as a joke, but the
consequences have been very serious. We had no choice
but to lock down the community, making it private and
invite-only, and work with the site host, ning.com, to
expel all the vandals. So needless to say, I'm pretty
annoyed, but I don't want to make the situation worse.
My gut is telling me to call them out and write an
open letter to Wired on my blog, telling them that
they're a part of the problem - eg, "Wired mocks
educators for combating cyberbullying" - but I fear
that doing so will lead to more vandals and bullies
attacking the site, and Wired basically saying "we
told you so."
Any thoughts on what should I do?
andycarvin at yahoo com
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