[Open-education] [OER-advocacy] Deseret op-ed... very negative but see the commentary

Paul Bacsich Sero paul.bacsich at sero.co.uk
Wed Aug 10 09:27:14 UTC 2016

In the interests of balance, here is an article commenting on a very negative article in Deseret News (http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865659643/Our-view-Openly-licensed-educational-resources-pose-a-threat-to-teachers.html?pg=all) on the threat of OER and related agendas.

My opinion is, having spent months letting the US OER-related stuff wash over me, that the negative articles are very much in the minority and usually in them the issues seen with OER are part of wider issues with various aspects of “big government”  - and some of these issues eg with privacy are likely to be more important to a general audience than their issue with OER.

See what you think. 

This is just a flavour and I won’t make a habit of posting this detailed level of contestation to this list. If you want to follow at a detailed level join OER Advocacy Coalition (details at end)


Paul Bacsich
Coordinator, Open Education Working Group - http://education.okfn.org/blog/ 
Senior Consultant, SeroHE - http://www.serohe.co.uk 

From: Karl Nelson 
Sent: Tuesday, August 09, 2016 5:07 PM
To: OER Advocacy Coalition 
Subject: Re: [OER-advocacy] Deseret op-ed... again

Ordinarily, I try to follow a policy of not reading the comments on news websites. But, the comments (at least most of them) on the new article are great. Seriously. Go read ‘em. A few highlights:

  Grab my tin foil hat on the way out the door.

  Seriously? This is what we are going to complain about now? OER would be a fantastic boon for our local schools where funding is pitiful. Our teachers need cheap but good resources to teach our children since our legislature funds education so poorly. Teachers are free to choose which materials to use. The state of Utah has been producing OER textbooks for science classes for many years now. Our local school uses them for 7th and 8th grade science. The books only cost $4 each! Plus you can download a digital version for use at home for FREE!

  Smart school districts and schools will take full advantage of these materials. It sure beats paying $80 per book from some book company based who knows where.


  Yes this is exactly what we need here in Utah. Quality resources that come at a minimal cost. Thank you to the authors of this article for making us aware of resources like this. As a teacher, I've got nothing to hide, thus nothing to fear. I would love to get involved with something like this. Where do I sign up?


  Bring open source textbooks to college as well. Why pay $200 for a math textbook and have it updated every 2 or 3 years? Lets unburden our students of needless expense. Math 101 just doestn't change much year to year.


  This is easy. Content used to teach our students should be available for free. Too often research and instructional materials are created using government money and then are locked up in eternal copyright by for-profit companies and then government entities (schools) are required to pay to access those materials that they already paid to develop. And if the materials are truly OER, not just in name only, then the instructional materials can be copied and remixed and put somewhere else where it won't be tracked for those who are worried about being tracked. My only question is who really wrote this article?


  On Aug 9, 2016, at 8:57 AM, Nicole Allen <nicole at sparcopen.org> wrote:

  Hi all,  

  Heads up that the Deseret News has published another anti-OER op-ed, by one of the same authors who wrote the one last October. The argument is similar: common core is bad, OER is aligned to common core, therefore OER is bad — which we can all agree is pretty ridiculous.

  Here’s the new article:

  Here’s the old one:

  There’s really not much to say about it, but perhaps an opportunity to go back and pitch Deseret on a positive news story sometime in the future. 


  You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups "OER Advocacy Coalition" group.
  To unsubscribe from this group and stop receiving emails from it, send an email to oer-advocacy-coalition+unsubscribe at googlegroups.com.
  To post to this group, send email to oer-advocacy-coalition at googlegroups.com.
  Visit this group at https://groups.google.com/group/oer-advocacy-coalition.
  For more options, visit https://groups.google.com/d/optout.

-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://lists.okfn.org/pipermail/open-education/attachments/20160810/96b2db91/attachment-0002.html>

More information about the open-education mailing list