So, as I said I would do in my last post, I read the critiques, discussions and reviews of the Cape Town Declaration before actually reading it, and all that did was set me up for utter disappointment. What I expected was a dense and in depth declaration, but what I found turned out to be not much more than 900 word letter to the editor! Sorry if that hits some as a bit harsh, I appreciate the effort, but like Stephen I struggle to see the benefit of it. What it did inspire me to do is check the Wikipedia for any mention of it, and to review the status of the WP entry on OER.. hmm, there’s something the Cape Town think tank could have worked on…

Of course Stephen can’t be the one to ask it, but of the group that was called in to pen the declaration, why was Stephen Downes not one of them? Stephen is on record talking about open education since way back. I see there were some big names included but not our SD! He would have been an extremely valuable (if challenging) addition to the group. But if I know Stephen at all – he probably wouldn’t have accepted the invitation 🙂

So, the Cape Town Declaration – both product and process has let me down… and as if BotheredByBees sensed my disappointment across the Tasman there in Australia, he has posted a link to an article by Ahrash Bissell for the CCLearnin initiative called Towards a Global Learning Commons. It is a fast paced, engaging, and broad reaching article that skims the surface of a number of important issues facing the Open Educational Resource movement.

But I’m equally dismayed that with all its posturing, this article comes to us in PDF only! And a two column one at that!! WTF? Thanks to that, it makes it quite difficult to cut and paste parts of it out or more.. so I won’t bother to speak into it other than to say that it is quite inspirational, touches on a number of important issues, and is an enjoyable read (apart from the 2 column PDF 😦 .

Just get past the usual intro to OER (but do read it), and focus in from the Problems and Solutions part on. From my experience as someone engaged in trying to lead an institution towards OER, this article touches on some of the issues we face.

But darn it! why did they do that silly PDF thing 😦 and where’s the clear copyright statement on it? Oh here it is: Copyright © 2007 by Educational Technology Publications, Inc., used with permission… jeez!