Dear [insert name here]
Posted August 17, 2012on:
A few days ago, I received this email from “Hanna”. This could be a real person or not.
Hi Dr. Tan,
I’m getting in touch with you because I’d like to contribute an article to your blog. I found your blog post as I was conducting research for a resource about how technology is used in education today.
The article that I’d like to contribute would be look at the most effective methods (and not so-effective ways) that technology has been introduced into classrooms and learning environments. How is technology used to improve knowledge retention and the efficiency of providing students with a wealth of information?
Please let me know if you’d be interested in an article of this sorts. I’d be happy to hear your opinions about this and work with you on hashing out a more cohesive idea if you’d like.
If this is real and Hanna really reads my blog, I expect a response by way of comment.
If this is not real, then this is what spam, marketing, or phishing is starting to look like. It can be hard to tell.
So here is my open letter response to Hanna and whoever else tries this in the future.
Thank you for contacting me. I am surprised that you found my blog because it is among millions.
I am not sure that you will want to write in my blog because this is my expectation for it: I do not blog for views. I blog my views. I do this to learn and to shape my thoughts on educational technologies and technology-mediated pedagogies. This is in my About Me page. Perhaps you did not see this statement.
As for a topic, I do not think it wise to promote current technology for just knowledge acquisition or retention. We already have books and tests for that.
Far more important is how to leverage on technology to promote collaboration, communication, content creation, critiquing, etc. Today, it is less about WHAT you know and more about WHO you know and WHAT YOU DO with what you know.
If you are real, I would like to hear your thoughts in return.
If you are not, then kudos to you for trying.
Real or fake, I think you will understand my caution and skepticism. Better to err on the side of caution.
It would help you in your cause (the real attempt to connect or to deceive) if you provided more information about yourself beyond your name and Gmail address (firstname.lastname@example.org). These days you are one Google search away from being verified or trashed.
Whatever the outcome of this exchange, I thank you for the opportunity to not just practice my digital literacies but also develop some digital wisdom.