Instead of mostly ignoring ed-tech, now tech investors and entrepreneurs pour money into it and to the marketing of its associated practices, products, politics. Their designated storytellers dutifully retype the industry press releases and spread the industry narratives. These storytellers have no sense of context, no sense of history, no substantial knowledge about the subject matter, but they are well-connected and well-funded. To them, everything in ed-tech is glorious and innovative (except Blackboard, of course); and the adoption of technology, which they’re certain has never happened ‘til now, so long overdue. MOOCs, blockchain, VR, iPads, YouTube, digital flashcards — these are all poised to revolutionize education forever, the storytellers have insisted.
Until they’re not. Then the storytellers will furrow their brows and throw a line or two into a tale, suggesting perhaps perhaps perhaps there are privacy issues or security issues or sustainability questions or pedagogical problems. But any concerns are all quickly forgotten as often the very same storytellers the very next day tout the very same problematic product, no mention at all that are concerns or criticisms. Ed-tech relies on amnesia.
Ed-tech is a confidence game. That’s why it’s so full of marketers and grifters and thugs. (The same goes for “tech” at large.)
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