Today’s post is a poster called “Supporting School Social Media Use from the Top”. It provides what I consider to be the key ideas and/or ways administrators and school leaders can support social media use in their schools. Please heed the copyright notice at the bottom of the poster. You are free to link back to this page. If you would like permission to re-use or re-produce this poster, just email me at Julia[dot]Hengstler@viu[dot]ca. As to why I’m not using Creative Commons myself–that’s a post for another day. I hope you find this helpful. Let me know what you think.
This is not my usual topic for a post, but it’s an education opinion piece.
I was recently sick—but am not teaching this semester. (Note: This is not a picture of me sick: first clue, I’m female. 😉 ). I remembered my K-12 teaching days and how I sweated over whether or not to take a sick day.
I tried to find some tips for teachers to support them when they are sick & really should take a day off. Yes, this situation does actually occur: teachers, in schools with oodles of germy students, are not superhuman and do indeed get sick themselves. Sometimes they get seriously ill. Teachers (and other workers in other jobs) have allotted sick days because it’s a fact: we all know people get sick.
I admit I was a bit disgusted to see that most of what rose to the top in Google results were allusions to teachers using sick days indiscriminately or for a “day off” to miss work. There were even statistics that say that teachers take a disproportionate amount of Fridays & Mondays off. (Hey, my doctor’s office is often overrun on Mondays with sick people. Any correlations?)
In one article, a teacher reported how the school administration sent around an email stating that students sick with vomiting or diarrhea should stay home for 2 days before returning to school–but same standard was not in place for teachers.
Another teacher pointed out how much work is involved in staying home–arranging a substitute/teacher-on-call, creating some lesson plans, dealing with whatever other outfall then and upon your return. He then prided himself on only ever taking 2 sick days in XX years of teaching.
Do people abuse the system? I’m sure like every system there are abusers, but teachers do get legitimately sick and rather than coming into school, spreading their illness and extending their time required to get better, they need to take a sick day and visit the doctor.
So, if you are sick and should stay home or in bed— Teacher, take a sick day.
I recently got the news that Microsoft Office will no longer have Clip Art (see more here http://blogs.office.com/2014/12/01/clip-art-now-powered-bing-images/ ). What will happen now is that your search for images to embed in MS Office documents (Word, Excel, Publisher) will be handled by Bing (a search engine owned by Microsoft) using a filter to identify Creative Commons Licensed materials. In theory, this should return “useable” images for you, but the reality is a bit more complex for the average educator. Please read on.
What You Need to Know About
Every CC License Except “CC0” Has Requirements for the User
Many people think they are free to use Creative Commons licensed materials in whatever way they want. This is incorrect. Creative Commons content is licensed in a particular way and all but one of the licenses has requirements. The exception license is designated “CC0” where the creator/author is contributing content to the “public domain” meaning you can do whatever you want with it, however you want. Some countries do not legally recognize that authors/creators can directly put work into the public domain.
There are 6 other commonly recognized forms of Creative Commons (CC) licensing. What they all have in common is that EVERY ONE of the other 6 licenses requires ‘attribution’ as a minimum requirement when you make use of that content. Below is a quick grid of the 6 main licenses (other than CC0), their icons, and the requirements for use.
Creative Commons License Requirements (J. Hengstler, December 2014)
MS Bing’s CC Search Filter is Reliable, Right?
Tom Kulhmann, a respected blogger & elearning developer, did a recent test of the Bing search function with MS Office (T.Kuhlmann, 2014, Microsoft is Dumping Clip Art. What Are You Going to Do?). He unfortunately found that the Bing image search returned images from sites “under some sort of Creative Commons license, [but] many of the images [my emphasis] were not necessarily owned but the site author”. He goes on to say, “In my tests, there was nothing to indicate that the site owner actually had rights to the image for me to use. So basically, you can’t trust the images you find in the search [my emphasis]” (T. Kuhlmann, Microsoft is Dumping Clip Art. What Are You Going to Do?).
As an Educational Technologist in a Faculty of Education, here’s my advice to educators:
- Remember anytime you use Creative Commons content you have obligations—the least of which is attribution (unless it is CC0, Public Domain.)
- Don’t trust Bing’s image search results as your sole test to determine if the image itself is licensed under Creative Commons & which license it is.
- Do a little legwork to find the original version of the image online & check it’s licensing. (If you need help, ask others to give you a hand or try tineye.com.)
- Find other sources of Creative Commons licensed image—some ideas below.
- Be sure to follow the requirements of the particular image’s Creative Commons license.
Some tips to search for appropriately licensed alternative content:
- Google Advanced Image Search http://google.com/advanced_image_search
- Set “usage rights” to desired “openness”
- Reverse image search on tineye.com to find the “original”
- Google Advanced Search http://google.com/advanced_search
- Set “usage rights” to desired “openness”
- Search OER directories & sites
- Search Columbia University Libraries/ Information Services, Public Domain Resources
- Search University of Toronto Libraries Images and Visual Resource Collections: Public Domain
- Search Google with “Creative Commons” and your content term
Recently, I was asked to present at Jane Jacek’s (@JEJacek on twitter) school in #SD61 Victoria on the topic of copyright and copyright compliance. As part of the preparation process, I thought it would be handy to have a decision tree. I though one already existed for this, but when I tried to track one down I couldn’t find one. So, I thought I would just have to make one for Canadian copyright and teachers. I needed a big virtual canvas for this as it has various pathways. So, the actual decision tree is housed as a Prezi. The image below is a single screen capture of the entire canvas of “A Canadian Copyright Decision Tree for BC Educators“. Please click on the link above, image or link below, to go to the Prezi itself and see the content in more detail.
Feel free to comment or send me an email if you find any errors or omissions you feel should be included.
I hope it helps Canadian teachers–especially those in my province–more readily navigate copyright decisions.