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Flog of the Prokonsul

Internet fluency, digital governance and Wikipedia propaganda. You have been warned.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Wikipedia Weekly on Digital Citizenship

A recent inteview (#29) at Wikipedia Weekly raises some interesting points about what it is to be a 'Digital Citizen'. I think its worth listening to.

And the following inteview (#30) is with yours truly :)

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Update on ACLA

While I am still waiting for any word from Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, I have scheduled a meeting with people from Allegheny County Library Association for Monday, October 1st. I will keep you updated; let me know if any of you would like to volunteer to do something for them (and what would that something be).

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

How to use our knowledge

I would like to propose that we use our online discussions as an opportunity to share our knowledge with the outside world. There is a Wikipedia article on digital divide, but it is not very good - it needs more references, and it is also tagged with "This article or section is in need of attention from an expert on the subject.". It doesn't even acknowledge the main topic of our recent Blackboard discussion - the concept of 'have now' vs. 'have later' is not mentioned at all in it (!). What do you say we try to improve it, with knowledge gained from our books and articles? I think it would be great if as one of the 'digital artifacts' of our class we can leave a vastly improved Wikipedia article on digital divide. And from a certain perspective, working on Wikipedia in such a way is a community activity, and 'service learning', too.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Library Update

Well, it's time for an update on my Carnegie visit. Which is "not much" - but here's the full story.

I approached one of the librarians, introducing myself and the concept of our class (i.e. that there is a group of grad students willing to help them in teaching computer literacy skills, and that some of us can also lecture/offer aid to the librarians on topics of our particular interest, such as Wikipedia). The librarian noted that they don't need courses, as they are already experts on things like Wikipedia (I wonder if any of them actually edited it), and suggested that I go upstairs and talk to people from "Job something Center" to see if they would need extra help in the courses they run for visitors.

People upstairs were polite but they firmly stated that their courses are run by paid employees and they see little need for volunteers. They promised to pass my contact info to a person who may be interested in our help (I am still waiting for any sign of life since last Wednesday...).

So overall, I am a little disappointed with the librarians at Carnegie. Of course, maybe I just talked to the wrong people - but the presumption that they know all and we cannot teach them anything, and that they have no need for free volunteers to assist them with teaching others, is rather... surprising. I wonder if any of you tried approaching the Carnegie library yet? It's such a big place, close to were we are, that it would be a shame to let it 'pass' so easily. We could do much good there - even if they don't realize it :)

PS. I did get one possibly useful piece of info: apparently somebody at Allegheny County Library Association may be interested in our help...

PPS. I tried Carnegie again on Thursday. If we don't try... again, I am waiting for them to contact me.


Thursday, September 06, 2007

Flog reactivation

Have you seen Wikipedia's article on service learning?

Today I've asked Carnegie Library if they are interested in volunteers. The responce was lukewarm but somebody is supposed to contact me; I'll keep you updated on details. If you go there yourself, look for training centre, 3rd floor, to the right and far end.