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Eduspaces crosses the pond to mystery new home

December 20th, 2007 by Graham Attwell

Completely tied up in meetings so no time to comment at any length on what has been a somewhat traumatic and very instructive phase in the development of the community.

For those of you who have not been following, the story goes something like this. Open Source boyband lookalikes, Ben and Dave, develop innovative social software application called elgg, originally intended as an e-portfolio. Elgg quickly becomes popular, especially in the educational technology market. However popularity does not turn into hard cash for Curverider.

Slowly, over time, Curverider attract commercial contracts and gain funding from business angels. Obviously wanting to focus on the new business development Curverider announce they are to ditch eduspaces, their education platform and community.

The announcement causes uproar in the edublogosphere. Curverider make a brief statement but refuse to be drawn into any discourse. A number of offers to take over the network emerge. Curverider refuses to respond publicly. After five days it is announced by ‘news‘ – Curverider’s non de plume – that TakingITGlobal were taking over the network.

Members of the network are grateful for the support but non-plussed as to who TakingITGlobal are and why they have been chosen as inheritors of eduspaces.

As Steve Warburton says:

“It is good to have seen so many offers arrive within such a short space of time and from such a variety of sources. What lessons can the community learn from the experience? For me, this has been and continues to be a question about community governance models and I strongly feel the issues surrounding this still need to be voiced and thought through by the community particularly as it now seems likely that it is to be shifted to a new home.”

I totally agree with Steven. The resolution of the eduspaces debacle is almost more disturbing than its outset. A series of offers were made to host eduspaces – a number of them on the public discussion list. other requests for information were posted. There was no public response by Curverider. the community were not involved or even consulted in the process.

Good luck to TakingITGlobal. But why was TakingITGlobal chosen out of all the offers? What were the criteria for selection? I think the community has the right to know.

Longer term this should be a wake up call to the community. A new eduspaces community may arise. But this time the community has to develop forms of organisation. TakingITGlobal can be members of such a community. But they cannot be allowed to ‘own’ Eduspaces in the way Curverider did.

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2 Responses to “Eduspaces crosses the pond to mystery new home”

  1. Hugh Switzer says:

    Hi!

    Since I have little information about the transfer of eduspaces to TIG, I thought I would at least demystify who TakingITGlobal is and what we’re all about!

    We’re an international non-profit organization headquartered in Toronto, Canada. TIG provides a portal for young people to find inspiration, access information and get involved in improving their local and global communities. We currently have just under 175,000 members from over 200 countries and territories. A number of years ago, we launched TIGed (TakingITGlobal for Educators) which was designed to help educators integrate classroom lessons with online interactive lesson plans. TIG was also created by and currently run entirely by young people, and we seek to keep youth on the cutting edge of what is happening in both their local and global community.

    You can find out more about us by going to the “about” section on our website here: http://www.takingitglobal.org/about/

  2. Graham Attwell says:

    Thanks Hugh. I have nothing against TakingITGlobal – my criticism is on he manner in which the transfer was done. TakingITGlobal has made a promising start in calling for a representative body for teh community.

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