Tuesday, 30 July 2019

My #CEduAD Experience

This post details my experiences with the 2018 attempt to bring Connected Educator Appreciation Day to life which, like the original idea in 2015... Started out trying to bring a Digital Citizenship Event to Scotland.

No one would like more than me to be detailing something along the lines of:

"My collaboration with the #DigCitSummit movement in 2015 has succeeded with their grassroots district-by-district, school-by-school approach and has achieved what Invisible Children did, as detailed in New Power"

But unfortunately that is not how my DigCitSummit story ends or how this post begins... But that's OK because getting that 'balanced triangle with the right incentives and feedback mechanisms' is freaking hard work (I'm wondering if it might actually be impossible! Lol)

In the event that it's a long and/or garbled post... you should have tried living this particular dream from Jan-Oct 2018 (Especially since July)... It sure as heck wasn't fun!

But just wait and see how this post gets boiled down to a single sentence in 12-24 months time... Spoiler alert: that sentence is already included in this post, see if you can find it ;)

But the comment will be rejected and resisted at the moment... but will be beyond obvious in a few months.

It feels like some of my experiences are a little ahead of the curve in some ways with 'loose, informal collaborations'

For example we are seeing movements started in 2014/5 like the Scottish Independence Movement's 'All Under One Banner' (#AUOB & @AUOBScot) going through some rough times, and are currently over sharing all kinds of details on social media - More evidence that we need to see a return to #YOYOW.

If I had any advice for anyone exploring this kind of collaboration (Which may well be the future of work) it's this.

Get your Pirate Code 2.0 100% right! 

Or as Tribal Leadership puts it:

"Identify your core values and then align them with a 'noble cause'"

Get the right people on the bus first (As Jim Collins puts it) before you identify the core values and the destination.

The 'noble cause' that I have been interested in over the last few years has been to encourage educators to collaborate more using tech tools like Twitter and Skype.

In sharing my #CEduAD experience here I have used my own words... Whether in a public Tweet, blog post, email or private DM, I do my best to own my words and this post is made up of them.

When referring to anything that others have said, it is using posts that have been publicly shared about how they feel the idea and event came together.

There are a number of groups that I hope benefit from me detailing my experiences here:

1) Groups like #AUOB who have collaborated with people that they clearly trusted and saw as friends at one point in their relationship... clearly this is no longer the case.

2) Political types getting used to the nonsensical news cycle
(And I'm playing about with #NewPower Storms to explore some ideas around the #OnlineHarms consultation)

“A lot of people around here say ‘we have to be our best selves’ and not speak or do negative things, would you agree that that is something you cannot control, or do you think positive messages are more effective”

"It depends on the context, remember this framework of the three storms… sometimes you have to create a moment of conflict, you need an enemy!"

Think about the girl trying to save the school, the enemy was the Governor of Rio, who was going to bulldoze her school, you can’t just rely on positive messaging… especially in the current context in which intensity matters so much, that passionate people support. New Power Virtual Gathering July 2018

Most importantly I hope this helps this group

3) Educators who have selflessly given up their free time only to find that they were doing all the work for someone else's brand and/or career.

Both the quantitative data and the anecdotal evidence highlights that this is an issue.

In 2015 I used the Pirate code for a project, since then I have read 'Be More Pirate' which asks:

1) What are you willing to take a stand for... to put your neck on the line for?

"When I say fight, I mean actually fight. That doesn't have to be physical, it could be a fights with the system, it could be a professional conflict, a falling out with a friend or a row with a stranger. It could be a war of words, it could be a battle of wills or if could be lobbying, arguing, demonstrating or debating.

But whatever it is, it's a real fight, one where you're putting your neck on the line, you could get hurt, you've got something to lose, it could cost you your job, end a relationship, damage your reputation, or worse" Be More Pirate

2) Highlights that groups fall out, split and reform as they try to find the right mission and/or crew.

"In the workshops we run, the second stage is where things really get started, we break into crews and a sense of mutiny begins to fill the room. Making new rules can be complex, but that's not where we start; the first thing to do is get a crew to choose the one rule they collectively most want to break, and then begin the task of remaking it. 

In this challenge, we've seen things get pretty heated; crews fight, split, re-form and commit to actual rule breaking there and then. We find when you really reconnect with that rule you know needs breaking, and actual alternatives begin to emerge, with a crew ready to try to change them, pirates begin to get serious.

So, to give you your own taste of the challenge in the sessions, please take a few minutes to answer the following question:
  • If you could break any rule, what would it be? And how would you remake it?
    For me it would be: get educators to collaborate beyond the 4 walls of the school more.
So, to anyone who has had experiences like this.

Keep giving! Keep collaborating! Share the gift of your idea... Learn from your mistakes the first or second time round and try again which, as irony would have it, is the same advice that The New Power authors gave at the inaugural Virtual Gathering last July:

Question: “When you’ve thought of giving up… what have you done to hang in there”

“The failures are sometimes more important than the victories… use it to refocus”

Do you go back to core values (Here are mine!)… or get de-motivated. Chase those storms… Being grounded in the community. You know, the collaboration. Think about those kids in the cave. Those kids got through that because of that solidarity and that sense of community. Those New Power models, when done right really enable and that can get you through those periods in the wilderness” Jeremy

"It feels like a very big defeat if you try something new and it doesn’t work out… We all have defeat after defeat after defeat…New Power is like a muscle you have to strengthen it again and again and again, and that’s how you become more resilient" Henry. 

"You have the power to change the world, you really do... With an idea" Nancy Duarte

Be More Pirate and Nicole Yershon's Rough Diamond would prove to be far better PD than anything New Power had to offer.

I honestly have no idea if the content below will all come across as 'sour grapes,' or seen as 'airing your laundry in public,' OR if, as is hoped, people see it as an attempt to be helpful.

I share my experiences in the hope that it helps those ready to quit social media and collaborating and/or building movements to find a different crew and try again.

Thanks to a kind word and the right support, I have done just that!

Whatever way people choose to interpret this

1) If you feel it's not to be helpful, then you clearly don't know me or what I've been through!!

2) Every coffee shop, workplace and school sees friends and colleagues talking about each other, falling out and making up again.

With social media being relatively new and passionate people working on projects they care about, we simply have not figured out how to fall out and make up, beyond reaching for the 'Block' option.

Finally, I saw that one of the #CEduAD 2018 sessions was all about promoting your own skillset... I have not watched the video but here's my attempt at it by detailing my contribution to this movement and 'promoting my skillset' to show what I did to contribute to this idea.

#CEduAD: The Alternative Story!
"Connected Educator Appreciation Day started with the idea of giving all learners the opportunity to experience the best that education has to offer" 8th Aug 2018 None of us is as smart as all of us

I was both shocked and upset when this was written without asking for my input before, during or after it was published. I highlighted the fact that this was not how the event came about.

I told the people who managed the site and the person who wrote the post that this was inaccurate at the time... But my voice was totally ignored, and has been ever since.

Add to this the fact that the first thing that's added once people in my PLN contributed to the cost of hosting the website:

'#CEduAD proudly created by Vlatka Butkovic Consulting' 

But no mention of the people who paid for the hosting or those who put a lot of time and effort in from Feb-July 2018... not to mention the hustle that went into the idea since 2015!

If Adam Grant's book 'Give and Take' and previous experiences about culture is anything to go by, these are clear early indications that you are in the wrong crew... and a useful reminder that anyone who ignores the advice from 'Zero to One' will pay for not heeding the old quote 'Act in haste, regret at leisure'

"If you can’t count durable relationships among the fruits of your time at work, you haven’t invested your time well"

"Met at a networking event, talked for a while, and decided to start a company together. That's no better than marrying the first person you meet at the slot machines in Vegas: You might hit the jackpot, but it probably won't work"

Or as New Power highlights with the Snap Chat story (Page 19)... It happens with start up founders, it happens with Politicians, it happens in the workplace, it happens with friends and in every playground every day, [*shock! Horror!*] it happens online too!

Both these articles are worth a read...
Then compare with The Heart of The Well

#CEduAD: The REAL Origin Story!
Ironically, #CEduAD was started as I was inspired with what No Kid Hungry does with Black Friday and as a result of what I'd learnt from 'Community Manager Appreciation Day' #CMAD

27th Nov 2015:  Connected Educator Appreciation Day

Seventeen other posts about how and where I worked on this idea between 2015 and the Aug 2018 post on the #CEduAD website can be found at the end of this post.

As you will see, on the actual day of last years' event, some pretty hurtful things were said.

However! One thing that I totally agree with and 100% admit to is that when I try to bring ideas like this to life it can be chaos! Some of this may be inexperience, some because I have ideas that I know will work but don't have a voice...but equally there is an element of

First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.

If anyone was to care to take a look at my attempts to bring the DigCitSummit 'brand' to the UK in 2016

This was someone that wanted to help organise initially but, by the looks of things, when we started to talk about crowd funding the travel of US Connected Educators, went from supporter to detractor...

Compare this with the comments that were made in April 2018 (Which are below).

And/or the comments from early attempts to make #Get2ISTE happen

And then compare with the 2016 ISTE article

As you can see there is resistance... before they become beyond self evident.

Compare this 2015 #Get2ISTE comment with June 2018 when I hear that a member of the 'Official #CEduAD team' wasn't going to be at ISTE.

People said some really hurtful things to and about me to start with about these ideas and after all the work has been done too! Words on a screen hurt folks!

Good ideas (And bad ideas that need to iterate into good ones) that are 'different' need time. They get rejected initially. You need a thick skin to innovate! #BeThatKindofElephant.

Things can be disjointed and messy as you roll with the punches of 'fake friends' saying they'll support your work but then leave you in the lurch... or your real friends stepping in to host, only for the date not to work and have to drop out.

So yeah! I roll with the punches and work with the hand I've been dealt with each project. I find that Dave Logan/Tribal Leadership's '90 Day Strategy' is invaluable.

"I think when we think about what’s possible from an idea that maybe was planted a few years ago by William and, you know was maybe talked about… and discussed in length for quite a while with him and others, but you know, to see once the right people came together what’s possible… and what can happen" #CEduAD Introductory Session (Words on a screen hurt... Esp if from people you once looked up to!) 

To this comment I say to the person that said them... You don't know me! You didn't take the time to get to know me! We had something like three calls between April and July and that was it for the whole of 2018 (and have only ever had about 4 calls ever!)

I use the time, skills and resources I have to try to get people connected... The reason I do this?

Because a kind word from the right person can make ALL the difference, as a 30min Skype conversation did for me a few years ago... You know who you are. You have been thanked. And you're a Lego Mini Figure Super Hero in our house too!

Here's my messy, disjointed story that helped the #CEduAD team build a global event within a few months.

I'm glad it did come together. I'm grateful for every single second that every single person put into anything I was involved with in 2018 (And every other year!) Here's to taking the lessons learnt onto the next one ;)

"It's not a movement if it doesn't move without you" @jeremyheimans & @henrytimms via @ThisIsNewPower

Sod #NewPower... I'm going back to Being More Pirate, it's way more fun!

And I think I'll try my hand at empowering some young #RoughDiamond Pirates too, because working with the grown ups can be complicated and stressful. Serious fun is hard work folks.

Jan 2018
Following yet another 'Ask' from the DigCitSummit 'brand' when I support the 2017 DigCitSummit in Utah, I have a couple of calls to try to make the best of a bad situation (And not for the first time either!).

On one of these calls I'm told:

"We tried to make a #DigCitSummitScot event happen when we were in Ireland for #DigCitSummitIrl, but there was no one to organize it"

So I think to myself

"Oh what the heck! One more '5min favour' after 4 years of 'collaborating' with the #DigCitSummit 'brand' isn't going to kill me"

I send an email to a group of people that could make this happen quickly and easily.

Three people make up those all important 'First Followers' with an almost instant reply... and without whom nothing would have happened here!

One of the people who replied to this email benefited from the 2018 #CEduAD, unfortunately, I can't see that the other two did with their respective work and projects... When they easily could have (And IMHO should have too!)

After getting messages from the DigCitSummit team saying 'Yeah let's do this,' followed by a message saying they can't reply to the email or get involved.

Two days later I get an email from one of the DigCitSummit Co-Founders saying:

"Really happy to see the responses! I know you have wanted to bring an Edcamp to Scotland for a long time. Happy to support you"

At this point I wonder

"OK, there's interest, do I forget I ever sent the email? Or run with it and see what comes of it all"

NB It might come as no surprise to anyone that the DigCitSummit 'brand' jumped on it once all the work had been done... Good old reliable DigCitSummit and their buddies. Check it out! It's predictably hilarious!

Making Connections that matter! Oh Man! The stories I could have told that one if I'd joined the other panelists!

Good to know the #DigCitSummit 'Brand' are reliable in some ways... They always seem benefit from my ideas, time, effort and work (Shame about all the drama and BS they bring with them!). <- And that's me owning my words

(Before the usual suspects jump to complain about these comments the DigCitSummit 'brand' might want to tell them to 'Back off man!' and count their blessings I have never went down the #AUOB road with over sharing!)
December 2018: THE BEST PD I've probably EVER had!
March 2018
In March I create a @SkypeEdcamp account and spend a lot of time creating lists, reaching out to people and developing the account and idea.

NB when the 'Official #CEduAD organising team' who end up taking over at the end of July - without listening to a thing that had been planned since Feb - and drop the physical event, I change the account name to @ConEduAD.

A physical event and a 24 hour virtual event could have easily happened in late Sept! But they opted for an 8 hour virtual event with no physical meet up in Oct instead.

Also, myself and others (No one in what would become the 'Official #CEduAD Team') have conversations with various groups who have experience with Sype and unconferences to discuss how a physical PD event in Scotland could work connecting with educators from elsewhere.

April 2018
To then see people saying 'Let's Do It' and tagging me in Tweets about organising a #DigCitSummit event in Scotland during the Ireland event
I think to myself.

Are you kidding me? 
Unbelievable... You simply could not make this up!

As is perhaps understandable under the circumstances I politely turn down the invitation to get involved, but acknowledge the 15 people who were first to pitch in and help out with the #DigCitSummit 'brand' in 2015.

Then a member of my PLN shares this #DigCitSummitIRL video with me

"I was connected with Joanne because we brought the Digital Citizenship Summit to the UK with the help of a colleague William Jenkins [Fact check we were never colleagues, I stupidly volunteered my time to this person's 'brand' over a two year period!], who really is responsible for uniting all of us... So we brought some educators from the US and from the UK... " Digital Citizenship Interview

Seriously, you couldn't make it up! As someone said to me when I shared some of my experiences

It's like the script to a horrible movie.

May 2018
In the past, at around this point, I would have (and have done!) lashed out in frustration.

But, loose informal collaboration is new to many of us. Social media is only 20 years old (Late 2011 was when I opened my first Twitter account)... We're still getting to grips with it all and I am a life long learner.

I am also passionate about:
  • 'Radical Extreme Collaboration' as my friends at Declara put it
  • 'Knowledge Transfer' (Check out my #Cmgr Declara Collection!) and, 
  • According to the New Power Quiz, I am a 'Crowd Leader'
So I do indeed lash out but, in learning from previous mistakes (And to play around with what people like Trump do to continuously disrupt the news cycle)... as well as to play about with some Pirate 'rule breaking' all with the aim of keeping the idea alive. I lash out... but with gratitude.

I send an update to the group I emailed in February telling 'Mr Microsoft,' 'Uncle Oracle,' and 'Professor Green' how much taking 30 mins out of their schedule a few years ago meant to me.

It was a bit of a risk! It was the kind of risk that people 'who like to manage their brand' would never send in a month of Sundays... but who would sure as heck benefit from when others take those risks!

1st JuneOne of the 'Official #CEduAD Organising Team' members recommend that I read New Power, as well as Tweeting out insights I write a number of posts about the book as well as Tech Story 2.

ACEing Made to Stick - An Extensible New Power Essay
Tech Story 2 - The Wild West of the Internet

Saw Toy Story 4 for the first time this week and love how Bo sees loyalty to your crew as important, but as one member of my PLN and as Woody demonstrates in Toy Story 4.

"People move on... It happens"

Anyway, after 4 months of time and effort developing the idea..It's starting to look interesting to a group of educators who, like the #DigCitSummit 'brand' have recently left the classroom for startup land and are looking to build their own brand through the time and effort of others...

Been there done that and got the '#BeTheDigitalChange you want to see' T-shirt!!

20th June
There is a Skype call scheduled with myself and three others... But I have tech issues and no connectivity and can't contribute to the conversation to discuss what's been done and agreed to date.

While two members of the 'Official #CEduAD organising team' might have bonded on this call when I wasn't able to connect, this connectivity challenge would end up providing some valuable insights to creating movements and seeing me well rewarded with ideas that (I hope!) will prove invaluable for future projects!

Image result for an equal or better opportunity napoleon hill

23rd June
When putting some hustle into the Skype Edcamp & #CEduAD (2018) by reaching out to people in my PLN I found out that one of my 'weak ties' wasn't going to ISTE and this was partly due to costs... so I put some #Get2ISTE hustle into #GetCassie2ISTE18.

If I'm 1000% honest... with the benefit of hindsight, I kind of wish I hadn't bothered now!

Go check out how the story changed with how the 'Official #CEduAD organising team' met from July-Oct 2018!

I made a connection with someone who is AWESOME As a result of a conversation with one of the 'Official #CEduAD Organisers' during #ECGlobal 2018

...And I WON'T be changing the narrative of when, how and who it was that saw us connect!

Furthermore, I will ALWAYS be grateful to those who helped make the introduction! Sick of the bull shit artists I attract who change their stories... I was never there? Yeah right! #You Matter? Hmmm.

[Note to self: Delete the venting/frustration before publishing: Btw this post comes with me closing the door on some people... With a f**king well deserved and LOOONG over due slam! You know who you are... I think is how it goes in #CEduAD speak].

"Treat an #INFJ personality with respect and kindness, and the door will never be slammed"

6th July
As a result of the #Get2ISTE hustle and knowing that Edchange Global was coming up... I thought it would be an idea to have a conversation with EdChange Global for two reasons:

1) To make it clear that what we had planned was in no way trying to compete with what they were doing, but it should complement their event.

2) As I thought these 'Crowd Leaders' would benefit from learning about Community Management from someone with experience in this area and was 100% in line with the CMAD aims:

"Our business objective, if you will, in hosting these 24 hours of panels is to reach as many people as possible to educate them on the community industry" CMAD 2016

If after the conversation they wanted to share how they put a virtual event together and/or let their #ECGlobal community know about #CEduAD, great!

If not that would be fine too... We had a good idea of how things could run and had the experience we needed.

I had a word with EdChange Global on their own before others joined the call and said:

"I know that Edchange Global team have a relationship with the DigCitSummit people... Just so you know I have not had the best experience with that 'brand' and no longer have anything to do with them" 

When others join the call

"Shall we give member of our Edcamp team a shout and see if they can join us?" I ask

"We'll catch them up later" was the reply... I wonder if anyone ever did?

Given the links with the DigCitSummit/Institute and my relationship with that 'brand' it was never my intention (Or preference!) for the EdChange Global Team to get involved in the way that they did!

From my perspective, it was a quick introduction with someone that I thought could assist with their #ECGlobal work. A quick '5 min favour'

I can only imagine the kind of conversation that took place between team #DigCitSummit & #ECGlobal

"Yeah, the guy has great ideas and he's real easy to push out the way... he'll give you the shirt off his back"

Yep! And  you know what... when you've got all your gonna get, I'll intentionally ramp up my giving after being stung by the 'Takers' and 'Fakers' as you're not going to change who I am, and to ensure that I don't 'over correct' to become a jerk.

I have the skills, experience and ideas to do it all again... But hopefully in a way that empowers 'My Kind of People'

What if you don't have a voice? Keep Telling Your Story (Part One)

7th July
I send over a doc with some suggested community guidelines to a group of 5 people and consists of

Biz Stones 'New Rules' from Things a Little Bird Told Me and
Sam Conniff's 2.0 Pirate Code from Be More Pirate

The correspondence goes by ignored completely!

11th July 
I join the inaugral New Power Virtual Gathering and here's the wonderful thing that the guys have to say about me in July 2018.

"One thing I want to throw out here, I know you guys have seen on Twitter, William Jenkins (@EdTech_Stories). William is in here.

Jeremy: “William we love you”
Henry: “He’s a hero”

He is starting up, trying to create a New Power movement based upon all the learnings he’s gotten from the book, from you guys… to bring connected educators together.

I’m pretty excited, I’ve been talking to him personally about some that, so just wanted to put a shout out to him and let you guys know he was here"

For those who have read the book, we really appreciate the enthusiasm and engagement about the book. It’s been terrific to see so many reviews of the book being posted by members of the community. If you haven’t had a chance to do that, and you’re so minded, that’s terrifically helpful to us, to the book and those who are not read the book we look forward to hearing from you.

Henry: But you’ll need to go some to beat William, because William basically tweeted the entire book from start to finish, with his commentary as he went along, it was like a week’s worth of insight, taking the book to a new level.

I wanted to 'Pay it Forward' for everything I'd learnt with #CMAD by aligning the 'CMAD for edu' #CEduAD with the #NewPowerEducation movement.

This has indeed happened with the 'Official #CEduAD organising team'

But when one of the New Power values is 'Radical Transparency' and the way things were fabricated... It's not my idea of transparent!

The comments in July are A LOT different to the ones made three months later.

What changed? I have no idea! Neither me, my ideas, core values or the way I communicate changed.

Just as well I'm a fan of Ayn Rand's work... That provides a few insights. #WhoIsJohnGalt? No idea, but beam me up any time you like!

20th July 
On the weekend that my mother-in-law is getting another round of chemothrapy for her late stage cancer, as well as trying to 'connect with purpose' I make more introductions and I do what I can to support the EdChange Global Event... and includes taking a bit of time curating data for a #ECGlobal Zeemap.

In the "So You Want to Build an Edcamp" session here's how Michael introduces himself:

Michael from Edinburgh in Scotland, I’m William’s counterpart, he’s in Glasgow we are together pursuing the possibility of an Edcamp in Scotland, which hasn’t been done before. We’re here to listen and learn from you folks who are quite experienced in the areas of teamwork Edcamp versions. 

Here's the ECGlobal Joining the Dots post I wrote... You can see some of the things that the #ECGlobal team had to say on this Thread during and immediately after the event #YOYOW

30th July
There has been a group Twitter conversation going for a while, a '#CEduAD Watercooler' so that people could get to know one another. We arrange a group Skype call.

The EdChange Global team volunteer to help design any website
(I can see why that was now... He who owns the website can make up blog posts and change the narrative... Well played!)

One of the first things that happens after this call is an 'ask' that people pay to cover the cost of the website... Most definitely NOT the kind of ask I would put in initially, but people kindly contribute to it.

When a website planning meeting is scheduled with three members of the 'Official #CEduAD Organising Team,' I ask if they want me to join the call

"No, we'll catch you up later"

They never did and/or I am still waiting to be 'caught up'... Boy! Would I have a few edits to suggest!

20th Sept
“I guess what got me going on the whole connected trail was a guy called William Jenkins, he runs a blog called EdTechStories and it was him that put the idea to do more of this… I was talking to him one day on Twitter long ago, he was talking about Skype and how Skype in some schools in Scotland was amazing because of how it got schools together across the world connected and I jumped on that bandwagon and gave it a go.

Skype… Lead to Twitter… twitter lead to a variety of conversations I’ve had, leading to an organization called EdChangeGlobal, that’s Cassie Reeder and other there. Amazing, amazing people… I’ve now volunteered to organize that for next year and I would never have thought that was going to come before I had this journey that began years ago with Skype. One of the 'Official #CEduAD Organisers' first Periscope videos

22nd Sept
In frustration I take to blogger and write a
What if you don't have a voice? Keep telling your story? (Part II) post

A 2019 Update... to the advice of 'Keep Telling Your Story'
Sod that! My voice is hoarse and I'm tired of at best being ignored, at worst being taken advantage of... so I'll opt for whispering, speaking my ideas quietly with the people and groups I can trust and where I actually have a voice. It's easy to say
'You Matter'
'Appreciate You' 

Relationships take a little more commitment and candor to demonstrate to people that they ACTUALLY matter to you and that you truly appreciate them.

19th Sept
I notice a @ConnEduAD account on the #CEduAD website with no followers. I volunteer to hand the @SkypeEdcamp (Now changed to @ConEduAD) account over to save them starting from scratch with them this close to the event.

I voluntarily hand over the log in details to this account (With over 700 followers, a ton of hustle via DM and lots of lists curated).

I do this on the assumption that I will be helping out with the social media side of things in the run up to the event and on the day... Just as I had Tweeted out A LOT of things during #CMAD (See CMAD 2016 Reflections of a Newbie).

I was mistaken. It would end up that in four weeks time I would be labeled as

"The wrong kind of person with the wrong kind of purpose" 

27th Sept

Email to 'Official #CEduAD organisers' from me:
"A shared Twitter account is something that is new to me and one thing that I’d love to learn from you is how to keep a shared account secure, finding and using a ‘brand voice’ etc etc"

28th Sept
Email to 'Official #CEduAD organisers' from me:
"Managing a shared account and one with a consistent brand voice with a number of people involved would be of interest to me, I would like to be part of any documents or conversations about this that take place"

1st Oct
I send an idea for a 'Potential #YouMatter #CEduAD session' based on the projects that I've been involved with and the people who worked on them.

I get a reply from former Edchange Global organiser (Formerly called EdCamp Global)

"I’m not sure why I’m included in this email as I’m not involved in any of these projects, but please unsubscribe me. Thank you"

Here's the DigCitSummit 'Brand' making stuff up (again!), this time regarding the sponsors for the DigCitSummitUK event... What chutzpah those guys have! Nice to get some unexpected free publicity though.

5th Oct
A post with the title 'How Trust Grew an Idea into a Global Event' is published
I am hurt and shocked that there wasn't even a single sentence that acknowledges myself and the contribution of others who put a lot of time and effort in with this... But much worse was to come on the day!

The account I created, invested a lot of time in, and thought I'd continue to have access to with a movement I thought I was still a part of... blocked me.

The difference from the comments that would be made on the 11th July at the inaugural New Power Virtual Gathering Vs during CEduAD on the 20th Oct would be a shock for me!.

#RadicalTransparency #YouMatter #AppreciateYou... Love the #NewPower guys right back at you and with exactly the same duration and level of authenticity! You guys are my heroes too. #NewPower Avengers Assemble! Lol

"Words on a screen hurt"
Howard Rheingold Virtual Communities
20th Oct 

"Cassie and I met through Edchange Global [someone] introduced us to one another, and we just clicked immediately. I’ve learned from Cassie so much about organizing and tech… people are not used to communicating in this way in Croatia, not as much not as they should.

So I’m open to learning but I didn’t know how to do that globally, so Cassie was the crucial element to make that happen for me. And then just Michael jumped in, and William Jenkins was wonderful to introduce you to me and just one thing led to another… the swiftness of the change that this makes possible, I think this is faster than anything else in my learning, my professional development, for personal growth. I love it, I’m loving every minute of it"

Vlatka looking about as emotional as I was watching this… but for rather different reasons to me I suspect! 

Tim: And it just can’t happen… when you don’t have the right people, or the right purpose… the shared purpose with each other… But when you do, it’s like Vlatka said, a couple of months ago… we didn’t have a website,  we didn’t have any social media accounts, we didn’t really have the idea other than ‘Hey let’s do a virtual event’ (Mwahha hhha)… We didn’t know what it would look like, we didn’t know who was going to get involved… we didn’t know anything… to sit here today, and see over 40 people that are going to be on air, to see over 30 people who are helping promote this on social media… and to see every body doing it from all corners of the globe… is just phenomenal! Phenomenal. 

Who was it that helped pay for the hosting of the website? Why were those people not acknowledged? 

No social media accounts? Check the date that the CEduAD acct was created. The tweets and DMs prior to late Early Oct 2018 was all my time and effort!

Cassie: OK.. so… yeah… Erm, Kinda like Vlatka said we met though EdChange Global and I met Michael through Edcahnge Global as well, with connections, erm [eyes look down and shify] William, so thank you for that.

I’m going to be 1,000% honest with everyone, so for Edcahnge Global when we plan we start months and months and months in advance… we’re already looking forward to next year and, it’s… you know… nowhere near time for that event.

All that being said, in July I think, when we all started connecting as a team, to host this event and we’re like… Maybe we’ll do it in September.

I was like, that’s like two months away. What are you talking about? And now it’s October and this has been pulled together by this amazing team. Vlatka, Tim and Michael… and all of your hard work and effort.

And I’m just like in awe of everything that you guys have done to put this together, I’m just giving you kudos, because I know what it takes to put something like this together… and to see it come together so fast, and to see so much excitement out there from so many people like you were mentioning Tam from all over, it’s just incredible to see it, and now EVERYONE gets to see all the hard work that’s been put into this by THIS team… but everyone else who’s sharing… and you know just kind of enjoying it… basking in this connectedness that will come today, and I hope you guys just so give in because it’s going to be a day you won’t forget. 

Might want to check the links at the end of this post and/or check the DMs on the @ConEduAD acct from March-Sept Cassie... and/or speak to your buddies at #DigCitSummit UK to see how that came together within 2 months and on £0 budget.

Michael: The idea that William Jenkins put forward was that, schools in Scotland weren’t particularly connected and he wanted to see more examples of how kids and how their teachers can link up and learn from each other.

So why not [Take his ideas] and do this. Skype in the Classroom was a big start for me… and it was wonderful Skype in the Classroom that allowed us to go beyond our classroom walls.

18th Nov
"The initial idea came from William Jenkins and Andrea Tolley, who sadly were not able to join us on the breakneck speed process of planning a global professional development event" Connected Educator Appreciation Day All Wrapped Up 

1st Jan 2019
Through William Jenkins, I met Tim Macdonald and Andrea Tolley. It was at this point that things started to really heat up. Andrea and William were floating the idea of a virual / Skype EdCamp. For those of you who don’t know what an EdCamp is, I recommend you check it out.

Through no fault of their own, William and Andrea were not able to continue with the concept, despite months of planning, so Tim, Cassie, Vlatka and I ran with the idea.
Bring on 2019! Post

Curious as to why the #CEduAD team don't include my name on posts like their 'Cooking with Gas' but can on other blogs? Wonder what that's all about?

Nov: 'Couldn't handle the breakneck speed' 

Jan: 'Through no fault of my own'  

Which is it? 
Perhaps being ignored and then sidelined is more like it? 

What kind of idiot invests as much time as I have here and don't expect to have their time and efforts acknowledged in some way? Ever read 'Think and Grow Rich'

"No one will work indefinitely without some form of compensation. No intelligent person will either request or expect another to work without adequate compensation, although this may not always be in the form of money"

The #CEduAD Organisers Intelligent Person's Test
1) Take a look at the number of links at the end of this post, and then 
2) Then consider whatever time you've invested since July 2018
3) Then ask yourself

"Would I just step aside and give up on all this work that I've put into #CEduAD in the last 9 months"

No? Then why would someone else? Perhaps you didn't get all the emails I sent over the course of July-Oct?

These are my #CEduAD experiences, I almost deleted my Twitter account as a direct result of these experiences... But, equally, I also didn't because of these exact same experiences. 

I didn't because contrary to my #DigCitSummitUK Closing Remarks of #YOYOW. I realised that, while I do my very best to 'Own My Words,' I don't own them once they have been said, they are shared words.

They also belong to the people I spoke about, and it was my choice to speak about them on a platform for the world to hear what I had to say about them.

To take those words from them by deleting my account? That would have been wrong of me! 
To delete a kind word after they have been said is to take something from that person

But equally, to say something like:

"You are the wrong kind of person with the wrong kind of purpose"
"Can you stop tweeting from the @ConEduAD account" in a really crappy way and tone
[Which is your account for an idea you came up with and invested a lot of time and effort in?] 

"Don't tag me in tweets" But previously being full of flattery and praise... Until you've gotten all you can!
"I think you have hatred in your heart for me" After supporting people in their work for a prolonged period 

Whether publicly, privately... In text or voice and even if you do delete, retract and or apologize for words like that, speaking from some rather painful experiences... I 100% agree:

"Words on a screen hurt"
Howard Rheingold Virtual Communities

I long for a sense of belonging in groups (Whether F2F IRL or online with my PLN) the way that Tom Mandell did on The Well... I would like to see nothing more than the 'Love in Action' that the Well Beings found there. I wonder how Howard feels about these words almost 30 years on.

When I saw them for the first time in December 2018... I laughed so hard! What many groups like @AUOBScot are going through has all been done before, almost 30 years ago online.

"Choose your words carefully, they may out live you" Marc Smith NodeXL Book

I wonder what I'll make of this in 3 years time never mind 30! I have no doubt I'll be thinking 

'Wow! what an idiot I was back then!' 

If/when I re-read this then... But I will own them then as I do now!

I will know that it was a stupider, more naive younger me who said them. I will also know that I wrote this post as some of the people I care about, their time and efforts simply was not acknowledged with this when others just took over.

"If a person harms someone that the INFJ cares about, they will become very angry. They are very protective over the people that they care for.

If you are kind to the INFJ, they will see no reason to shut you out. They understand perfectly that people make mistakes, they will even be willing to help you resolve your issues. Being honest with the INFJ and trying not to hurt them, is all you truly need to do. It takes a great deal for an INFJ to finally Door Slam someone, meaning that this action is often well-deserved. Basically do not be the world’s biggest jerk, and you won’t suffer the consequences of the INFJ Door Slam.

The INFJ does not take the action of the Door Slam lightly. If this occurs there has likely been many warning signs beforehand. INFJs are extremely caring individuals, but everyone has their limits. The INFJ simply feels that they must “take out the trash” or else this person will continue to hurt them or the people that they love"
The Hard Truth About the INFJ Door Slam

...And I will know that I said them to help others learn from my hard fought for experiences (Especially #INFJs and Mind Time Connectors) and with the hope that they avoid making the mistakes that I did, I am after all a New Power 'Crowd Leader' (Apparently). 

Genuine Gratitude!

"We might meet as strangers... but we can part as friends"

Here's my best attempt at that - for the benefit of groups like #AUOB and for the 'Right-kind-of-people-with-the-right-kind-of-purpose Official #CEduAD organising team'
  • I would (Eventually, once I got over the pain of social rejection and ostracism) come to realise that I am still learning and that I can always try again, and did!
  • If all had gone well with the #DigCitSummit 'brand' then I wouldn't be able to say that I've helped establish three edu-based movements, instead of simply supporting one.
  • When I saw the 'Couldn't handle the breakneck speed' comment in early Feb I wondered to myself:
"Can I create a new movement between now and the end of the month when the first 'Be More Pirate' meet up by the 27th Feb"

Didn't quite manage it... it took six weeks instead of four and, thanks to an amazing friend, the idea was presented the idea at ISTE last month.

Also, when people saw me hurting when they asked me where I went, and rallied round... Including the guys at Be Yonder, who I single out here because I first met them as a direct result of a conversation with Michael Sinclair (@FillTheGapLearn) during #ECGlobal.

I don't change the story of how I am connected with people and am extremely grateful to both Michael and ECGlobal for being the 'catalyst' to us connecting.

And, just like my youngest son's Pirate Spy Guy Super Hero Lego Mini Figure, connecting with those guys might have made all the difference going forward too.
"Be the Bridge... Be the Person Who Connects"

That's the best Christmas PD that I've ever had! Watching Marc Smith's #OCTribe presentation on Christmas day at 4am last year cause I couldn't sleep due to stress. Check out my Be More Pirate hack on Marc's comment on Twitter.

  • Even with the really, really sore parts like the social rejection and ostracism from something that you put a lot of thought, planning, time and effort into has it's positives... And I'll find a way to put even the most painful parts of this to good use.

That's me all done. Those who might still be following all the way to the end of the next adventure, you'll see how this post will become a single sentence 'Blackbeard style Tell Tall Tales'... as well as how, where and why I was right to suggest that we need to make a return visit to The Well four years ago.

ere's the Ships Log and Pirate Articles from the #DigCitSummitUK event and my #YOYOW closing remarks... How's that for consistent over the last 4 years?!)

I wonder if this is a little too much radical transparency for the New Power guys though? I guess time will tell... 

If you can't always rely on positive messaging and 'Radical Transparency' is one of your values, then hopefully I've done OK, always keen to improve personally and professionally so happy to discuss.

In Conclusion...
Social Media is still new and, while I've helped create a few education movements now, I'm learning all the time and if I had any advice to the people who are going through this like the AUOBScot crew it would be 

"Dust yourself down, regroup, work on your core values and align with a 'noble cause' and find a new crew"

If there was advice to educators who have found themselves putting lots of effort in only to find they were furthering the career of others... Don't quit on social media and/or sharing the gift/idea/talents with the world... Give us a shout ALL VOICES WILL MATTER and we will look to build projects that are 100% win-win and mutually beneficial!!

I am still Tweeting and blogging because of the kindness of a handful of people... and am keen to 'Pay it Forward'

Pirate crews jump ship and mutiny, and people in all walks of life fall out... Go into any coffee shop, workplace or playground and you'll hear and see people either falling out and/or talking about others.

As for the #CEduAD crew? I do my best to live my core values... And feel I have done in 2018 with #CEduAD:
  • I had empathy about how tough building movements is and pitched in. I also appreciation that there may have been some misunderstandings... and that 2018 was particularly challenging for me.
  • The post about how this idea came together was not accurate; and I'm not a fan of being ignored
  • I have 'shown my friendship first,' 'Did some 5 min favours (And then some!!), 'I have collaborated,' 
Here's one of the #DigCitSummit Co-Founders talking about me and my core values
I am open to having a discussion either about the content of this post and changing it and/or to see how we can best make the best of the situation

...To #BeTheDigitalChange, to model the kind of behaviour we'd like our kids to demonstrate if and when they collaborate online (Or offline) and things go awry. 

If this doesn't appeal and/or you don't have the time and/or is too much hassle, no problem... I won't lose any sleep over it. I always! ALWAYS!  Try to plan for the best... but prepare for the worst ;)

"When men speak ill of thee, live so as nobody may believe them" Plato

"God Himself, sir, does not propose to judge a man until his life is over. Why should you and I?" Samuel Johnson
Image result for be kind for everyone is fighting a hard battle

Some #CEduAD posts
21st Oct 2013:    The Connected #EdChatModerator
2nd Apr 2015:    EdChats Getting Competitive
26th Sept 2015: Scottish Learning Festival and Chris van der Kuyl’s “Educators need to collaborate more” keynote
30th Nov 2015   #CEduAD: We are Better Together
1st Feb 2016:     #CMAD16: Reflections of a Newbie
24th Nov 2016:  #CEduAD: Skype an Educator
5th Jan 2018:      DYW…Digital Consumers?…Or Digital Creators? #AppsthatMatter
2nd Feb 2018:    Scottish Edu Projects
1st May 2018:    Edcamp UK – DYW & Tech Companies
16th June 2018:  Edcamp UK – New Power Storm
23rd July 2018:   EdcampUK – Getting Organised
22nd Sept 2018: What if you don’t have a voice? Keep telling your story

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