I am fairly sure I can draw the dots as to what Doug is Gah-ing about. Badge bashing is flashing about, but it was hardly “up in arms” when some people noted that the DML splash with Connected Learning did not seem to mention a great deal of prior work in this area.

I thought this was something we learn early, but a little of this goes a long way.

(FYI, the graphic is from Soul Kahn’s ep- okay, I did not find creative commons, but I did buy the album, if anything for the Alec Baldwin song).

It’s not that I see people like Siemens, Downes, Courus seeking anything but a reasonable nod to their work. Anyone who has invested, say ahuge about of personal time, commitment, energy into a body of work, say a thesis is going to naturally feel a bit off put if some other organization announces a highly publicized work of highly similat nature w/o even crediting prior work. Maybe they did, I nor others have not seen it.

Doing the background research, the environmental scanning is part of any effort like this. It’s hard to see how one could miss work like this (look, Doug, you do it yourself).

No one is claiming ownership of these ideas, and I agree that ideas are never really the product of just one or a small group of people, they are shaped, reframed, but their influences are as much a network as the ones the DML is talking about. We borrow them all the time. Borrowing and acknowledging go well together.

But acknowledgement is so much a key to the idea of connected thinking/being/learning (cough attribution), it is part of the juice that makes the flow go better, and frankly, is such a simple, easy thing to do, that it seems silly for me to be writing about it. I thought I leartned that in kindergarten. It ought to be the natural reflex.

I’m not even sure I will press the publish button because this seems just silly and I’d rather be creating stuff then harping about it. NUff said.

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An early 90s builder of the web and blogging Alan Levine barks at CogDogBlog.com on web storytelling (#ds106 #4life), photography, bending WordPress, and serendipity in the infinite internet river. He thinks it's weird to write about himself in the third person.


  1. I can’t disagree, acknowledgement seems like a small price to pay, and yet at the same time, even more than just acknowledgement is people actually doing something with the work/idea. When I see someone take an idea and then simply publish the same idea, but not actually do anything with it, that just ticks me off. But if someone has actually taken it, run with it, made something in the world bigger than just the idea, for me at least this soothes any small sting of not being acknowledged, because ultimately it seems that’s what’s more important.

  2. Hi Alan, thanks for the pushback. 🙂

    Perhaps I just do so because I’m hardwired to, but I ‘license’ all of stuff (thesis, blog, etc.) under CC0. In other words, I donate it to the public domain.

    You say that folks just want recognition? I’m not sure I see how that’s divorced from claiming some ownership over ideas?

    1. I can’t speak for what people want. Yes, they are sour people who may gripe about lack of recognition.

      But I can’t except that it’s always tied to ownership of ideas. I acknowledge people as a form of thanks not for ceding any ownership. Again, I am no psychologist, but my gut instinct says being acknowledged (and is that the word that come from Latin for I see you?) is a underlying human desire.

      Acknowledgement comes in various forms from gushing speeches to something as simple as a hyperlink.

      If “connected” is so important to learning I have any expectation that DML would be connected to as many ideas as possible. I find lack of connections super ironic.

      Ownership of ideas is a silly pissing match in my mind that has low interest to me.

      1. I’ve just realised that the example you cite of Alec Couros’ thesis is a really good example.

        Perhaps I should have cited him as an inspiration? I certainly was aware of his open approach at the time he did his thesis. But then I forgot about it until you referenced it in this post.

        Whilst I try to reference other people’s work as meticulously as possible, it’s the general drift towards better ideas that’s important, at the end of the days. I suppose that’s why I don’t understand the sniping at DML’s Connected Learning initiative.

        Anyway, I think we’re pretty much agreed and are focusing on semantics here, Alan. I’ll let you have the last bark. 😉

  3. Yeah Doug, we are a bit past done and am sure we are in more of a similar space than not. The DML sniping was I believe, 2 tweets, and not from any of our colleagues whose work is in the idea space of the DML thing.

    My belief is you can hardly ever over acknowledge, and it’s a good thing I know you practice overtly. But yeah, no one would suggest you could acknowledge every bit.

    Let’s get to the ideas! Last bark complete

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