My issue with Pottermore (edit:) is not really an issue with Pottermore but with information technology





 Pottermore is open to everyone from October ”  

This is false.  Unlike the printed books, Pottermore will only be made available to persons with computers and internet access.  Pottermore is open to everyone in October - everyone with the money to buy a computer and pay their internet bill.

This is what scares me so much about digital media:  Nowadays you see book stores and video stores shutting down left and right (Blockbuster and Borders, anyone?) - as books and film become digitized and accessible through high technologies, hard media will fall by the wayside.  There will soon be a very weak market for hard media, thus less and less of it will be produced. How, then, will we stock our libraries - how will we make information accessible to everyone?  Digital media is the end of accessability because in a society where digital media is the norm, only those who can afford the technologies will have access to new information. The competitive nature of the technology market scares me even more.  (Planned obsolescence, anyone?) 

I’m afraid that fans are going to have trouble wrapping their heads around this.  Kindly keep your class privilege in mind. No charge to use a website does not mean it’s open to everyone. 

This is something I’ve thought about a lot about everything becoming online-based. It worries me.

This is something that I’ve thought about a lot in relation to technology in schools. Technology in the classroom is a HUGE part of teacher education programs. 

Maybe it’s just because most of my education courses are focused on training private school teachers, but there is little discussion of the possibility of kids not being able to be access the tech stuff that teachers are using in their classrooms.

For instance, Smart Music is a Music Ed product that enables students to log in and complete practice exercises, assignments, record their part of an ensemble piece, all of it sent to the teacher for evaluation and assessment. It’s a fantastic piece of software. If I ever teach in a school, I hope to have access to it.

It requires, however, that students have access to a computer, high-speed internet access, speakers, a microphone, and the student version of the software. 

Certainly schools can set up labs for students to use at school, but it can make it very difficult for some students to participate and be successful in their band or choir programs just because they can’t afford those materials!

I feel like this fear over the increasing amount of digitized of media fails to take into account the decreasing price of information technology. It extrapolates the trend of digitalization without the courtesy of similarly doing so for the increasing accessibility of this sort of technology.

This claims that digitization will be the end of libraries. Not so. My local library already rents out electronic copies of books online. Anyone with a library card can access them, but they have the same restrictions as any regular library book. I’m not sure that’s sustainable, but that’s another discussion.

This states that digitization is “the end of accessibility,” because only those with technology will be able to access this information. This fails to consider the incredible proliferation of information technology, over the last two decades, and how it can also be extrapolated into the future. Less than two decades ago only 13% of the US population had cellphones. As of last year 96% do. As of 2003, only around half of American households had internet access. At present, 70% do. Now, if all media were to suddenly become digital as of tomorrow, all at once, that figure would be quite troubling.

But that frankly that isn’t going to happen. The transition will be gradual, over the span of decades. And during that time the amount of households with internet access will rise as well (not just in the US, incidentally, but around the world). By the time everything is digitized, if such a point is reached, internet access will be as ubiquitous as electricity. Planned obsolescence is troubling, especially if similarly extrapolated, but you don’t exactly need a top of the line machine to access the net now, do you? Do you think you’ll need one down the line?

I feel like this has the same tone as some of Socrates’s arguments in the dialogue Phaedrus, in which Socrates rails against the evils of books, and how they represents a massive danger to the spread of information. ‘But if all information is written down, only those who can read will be able to access it!’

I’m paraphrasing there, but I hope you you see my point. In the end, it was just another means of delivering information. And it allowed more people to acquire that information that was previously possible. That’s where I firmly believe we’re headed with the digitalization of media.

I agree that eventually this will not be an issue. Don’t get me wrong, I love books, but I’m not anti-technological development and digitization. The problem, however, is what happens in the meantime.

School districts are incredibly diverse, and increasing use of technology in classrooms presents a rather large barrier to instruction in some homes. I don’t think this is a reason not to use technology. But to go in, guns blaring with tech-heavy policies and measures may hinder some students’ access to educational materials.

Sometimes I’m just afraid that we leave people without these amenities out of our discussions. Does everyone have access to Pottermore? No. Does everyone have access to online educational materials? No.

It becomes the responsibility of the school to provide these resources and get creative in serving every student equally regardless of socio-economic status.

(via uv-catastrophe)

  1. pseudo-tsuga reblogged this from astropossession and added:
    #are people forgetting how expensive these books were? #I was in India for the DH release and the price of the...
  2. astropossession reblogged this from holothuroid and added:
    Yeah, I don’t quite agree. Accessibility to hard media like books is pretty prohibitive on its own, especially when you...
  3. holothuroid reblogged this from perfectcoma
  4. fuckyeahpotter-more reblogged this from octagon-surgeon
  5. octagon-surgeon reblogged this from the-offending-tit and added:
    This is a great discussion about accessibility, although the books themselves are pretty pricey; didn’t they get up to...
  6. nervation reblogged this from lipsredasroses
  7. afractalparticle reblogged this from the-offending-tit and added:
    It’s available to anyone with access to a public library - which admittedly, are under attack, but still in existence.
  8. fatbottomedgal reblogged this from lipsredasroses
  9. sadgayfriend reblogged this from shedooooo and added:
    But unlike a book,which you can take home and read, the computers in the library have to stay there. So really the...
  10. shedooooo reblogged this from sadgayfriend and added:
    Seriously? wow… how is this a social problem? "how will we make information accessible to everyone? " Obviously… the...
  11. nukakitty reblogged this from legilimenced and added:
    Even if people do have internet, not everyone has the kind of graphic support to handle websites with such heavy...
  12. spoopymuffins reblogged this from gallopinggroundsloth and added:
    So is the argument that it shouldn’t be made available to those who do have access to an internet connection? Books...
  13. spooky-nunu-bot reblogged this from lindsay-quit-lollygagging and added:
    I refuse to live in a world without books. I will never buy an e-reader and my children will only have paper books. That...
  14. shesaconfusedchild reblogged this from legilimenced
  15. unheardmelody reblogged this from constantquotations and added:
    Valid point. I’m not disagreeing, but I do think it’s also worth mentioning that technology and computers themselves are...
  16. constantquotations reblogged this from the-offending-tit
  17. musicahumana reblogged this from uv-catastrophe and added:
    I agree that eventually this will not be an issue. Don’t get me wrong, I love books, but I’m not anti-technological...
  18. willthethird reblogged this from decommissioned061713 and added:
  19. uv-catastrophe reblogged this from musicahumana and added:
    I feel like this fear over the increasing amount of digitized of media fails to take into account the decreasing price...
  20. troublewithtwohands reblogged this from lipsredasroses
  21. androboiinprogress reblogged this from lipsredasroses and added:
    I’m not sure how I feel about this, or the fact that J. K. Rowling overlooked this fact.