Building your own website is cool again, and it’s changing the whole internet — from protocol.com by David Pierce
Writers, creators and businesses of all kinds are looking to set up their own space online again. To do that, companies are trying to figure out how to deal with two very different internets.

Excerpt:

Websites are back. After years of being sucked into the vortexes of Facebook and Yelp pages, devoting their time to amassing Twitter followers and Instagram likes, creators and businesses alike have seen the benefits of hanging up their own shingle again. Legions of writers are setting up Substack newsletters. Millions of people and businesses are setting up shop for the first time online using Squarespace or WordPress. Wix reported 7.8 million new users in the last quarter alone, and more than 29% revenue growth.

Substack doesn’t see itself as a newsletter platform, or an email-based product. The company is fundamentally interested in fostering direct relationships between readers and writers, rather than let them be mediated by companies whose interests are not always aligned with either side.

The driving force behind all that growth? Thanks to a pandemic closing stores, keeping people at home and leaving a lot of people without jobs, the only way to move forward is to figure out the internet. 

From DSC:
Though I really like WordPress — and this blog uses it — look at the stock performance in 2020 for Wix!

Stock price of Wix is way up in 2020

Our youngest daughter and I are going to set up a blog for her, as she loves to write. The idea was from her and my wife, but I love it! I think it’s highly motivating to her and she can have a voice…that she can share her writings with others. She’s got quite an imagination — so look out all!  🙂 

 

From DSC:
Our oldest daughter told me about this great/cool WIN-WIN situation here! I thought it was so cool, that I wanted to pass it along. What a great way to help communities, students, folks who want to read/write/produce art and more!


 

Semicolon Bookstore & Gallery: Chicago's only black woman-owned bookstore and gallery space

Powered by Bookshop: Supporting local, independent bookstores.

Chicago’s only black woman-owned bookstore and gallery space, Semicolon Bookstore and Gallery is committed to nurturing the connection between literature, art, and the pursuit of knowledge; while also using the power of words to better our community.

 

WMU-Cooley Named Top 10 Law School For Ethnic Enrollment in 2019 — from fox47news.com

Excerpt:

LANSING, Mich. — Western Michigan University Cooley Law School, with campuses in Michigan and Florida, was named a top 10 law school for racial and ethnic minority enrollment in 2019 by Enjuris, a collection of independent legal resources for legal professionals.

With Black students comprising 22.4 percent of WMU-Cooley’s total student enrollment in 2019, the law school is ranked in Enjuris’ recently released, Law School Enrollment by Race & Ethnicity (2019) [enjuris.com] report.

WMU-Cooley Named Top 10 Law School For Ethnic Enrollment in 2019

 

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.

 

For New Orleans–based firm, architecture is a tool for design justice — from autodesk.com by Redshift Video

Excerpt:

When Bryan C. Lee Jr. was a boy, his family moved from Sicily to Trenton, NJ, and he was struck by not only the vastly different physical environment but also the ways different physical spaces affect people. It’s a concept that he explores today at Colloqate Design, an architecture and design-justice firm that focuses on civic, communal, and cultural spaces through the lens of racial justice.

 

Moody’s: Coronavirus is accelerating shift to online education — from educationdive.com by Natalie Schwartz

Dive Brief:

  • The pandemic will hasten a transformation of higher education business models, according to a new Moody’s Investors Service report.
  • The crisis will accelerate many colleges’ plans to grow their online footprints, though not all schools have the resources to invest in digital infrastructure, the report notes. They will also likely expand non-degree and certificate programs.
  • Analysts predict that once the pandemic subsides, some colleges will struggle if they haven’t established a strong online presence.

“Some universities previously resistant to change will have to take more expansive steps to adapt to this transformation,” Pranav Sharma, assistant vice president at Moody’s, said in a statement. “Not all universities, however, have the resources or culture to move quickly and the coronavirus will expedite existential threats for some.”

Also see:

Active Learning while Physically Distant — from blogs.acu.edu

Excerpt:

  • Use a Google Form as an entrance or exit ticket. Upon entering class, a quick google form can engage students with a couple of quick questions. A google form as an exit ticket can provide good insight into student learning that day.
 

Solid points made by Martin Giles, Senior Editor, CIO Network for Forbes…below is the majority of his CIO newsletter for this week

Now that more and more companies are extending their work-from-home timelines, the issue of how to monitor and manage the productivity of remote workers is becoming even more pressing. Some businesses are rolling out software applications to track things such as workers’ keystrokes or watch what they are doing when they are on the internet. IT teams are central to these efforts, even if they aren’t the ones who initiate them.

Providing the technology is deployed appropriately, the use of such tools may not be illegal. But does it make sense to deploy them? Forbes CIO Network contributor Irina Raicu makes the case against doing so in a thought-provoking post.

Raicu argues that deploying intrusive tech such as keyloggers sends a signal to workers that employers don’t respect their autonomy and dignity. It also penalizes effective workers, who are being made to pay a price in terms of lost privacy so that managers can identify poor performers. Deploying intrusive tracking technologies in homes that are now doubling as workplaces also contributes to the normalization of their use more broadly across society.

Under pressure from business heads and HR departments, tech leaders may be tempted to fold rather than fight the tools’ deployment. But there’s another reason tracking tech can backfire that should resonate with anyone worried about cyber threats—which means just about every CEO and board director in America and beyond.

The sensitive, personalized data monitoring tech gathers is a tempting target for hackers and a breach could trigger a legal nightmare. Given that the bad guys have stepped up their attacks to take advantage of the chaos the pandemic has sown, this threat is even more concerning.

Excerpt from Irina’s article:

However, indiscriminate deployment of tracking tools would create a surveillance work culture that is likely to cause significant harm, while at the same time failing to deliver the results that business leaders expect. 

From DSC:
I see this same type of stuff going on within K-12, higher ed, and even in law schools. Often, we establish cultures whereby students are treated with great suspicion. It’s us vs. them. The verbiage is around cheating and plagiarism and the use of tools like Turnitin, Respondus, Examity, and many others. Why isn’t the focus on being on the same team? i.e.,

  • “Don’t you realize Mr. or Ms. Student that I’m trying to help you become the best lawyer, judge, legislator, etc. as possible?”
  • “Don’t you realize that I’m trying to help teach you skills, knowledge, and ethics that will aid you in your future?”

Why is unity / being on the same team so difficult to achieve in human relationships? I don’t have the answers. It’s just very disappointing. 

It’s clear that we have some major disconnects in our motivations and views of other people. We should be working as members of the same team.

With the need for speed within most organizations today, TRUST is key. Reminds me of this book by Stephen M.R. Covey:

The Speed of Trust -- a book by Stephen M.R. Covey

Addendum on 8/14/20:

  • 6 ways leaders can rebuild trust in their organizations — from fastcompany.com by Cara Brennan Allamano
    A Udemy survey suggests that more than half of workers believe their employers are using COVID as an excuse to cut staff. These strategies can help dissolve their suspicions.
 

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