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9843RE: [WWWEDU] Any thoughts on how I should respond to Wired?

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  • Carla Beard
    Aug 29, 2007

      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: wwwedu@yahoogroups.com [mailto:wwwedu@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
      Andy Carvin
      Sent: Wednesday, August 29, 2007 3:04 PM
      To: WWWEDU List
      Subject: [WWWEDU] Any thoughts on how I should respond to Wired?

      Hi everyone,

      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?


      Andy Carvin
      andycarvin at yahoo com

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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