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Free-range Thoughts

Marinating in the Mooc

For the second time, I am following along with the soon to become famous course, DS106 originating out of the minds of Jim Groom and Martha at the University of Mary Washington in Virginia. This course welcomes anyone to join as it is a massive open online course. MOOC.

It all started out very innocently enough that summer day in June – the
20th to be specific.Oh and did I mention, the 2011th year of our Lord? 

Dr. Oblivion is live. Check it OUT: #ds106 Get in there, internauts!
June 22, 2011

The digital storytelling course seemed to be off to a good start with Groom’s alter ego, Dr. Oblivion at the helm. Everyone was eager as many of us are at the beginning of any endeavor. Day 2 and Day 3 are very productive and students are working hard. 

The students exercise their do-digitalness and remix responses to the video lectures of OblivionDoc.

The course is fun and playful. Moving very quickly to our delight.

THEN, the unthinkable happens.

Trivial on flickr“]

dr o missing poster
Photo by simkathy2 on flickr

The students starting anxiously creating WANTED posters. There were precious few sightings of the good Doctor.

@obliviondoc spotted near Wash sq park getting coffee. . #ds106 #whereisoblivion
Photo by nottrivial on twitter

Attempt 2 Dr. Oblivion Poster
Photo by shannotated on flickr

It soon becomes apparent that a simple case of the missing alter ego – Dr. Oblivion –  is far more complicated than anyone realizes. A very sinister tone threatens to overwhelm the course. Some students bravely carry on with their assignments and some incorporate the facts of the situation into their ds practices.

A very disturbing sighting of the Doctor increases everyone’s anxiety.
@obliviondoc WHERE ARE YOU!? #ds106 #DrOblivion
June 23, 2011

Even the good Doctor continues his homework for DS106 while missing in the deep internet.

@OblivionDoc makes a 4-icon challenge on his own identity whilst missing from the Internet #ds106
June 23, 2011

Finally there appears to be a break in the case. The storifying of pedagogy has reached new heights.

I think this letter from @obliviondoc maybe a clue as to what’s happening with Dr. Oblvion #battleforoblivion #ds106
June 23, 2011
To the group called #ds106 please explain to your "leader" his folly and asinine behavior! Wisdom must prevail!
June 25, 2011
@dkernohan I am not "incorpo -REAL" I am simply REAL and I believe am being stalked by someone sent by Mr. Groom called Mr. Fixer. #ds106
June 24, 2011
Part Two: Dr. Oblivion #2 explains the whole complicated affair. #ds106
June 26, 2011

Meanwhile, a well-meaning and sincere student bites the dust. If such histoires can unfold in just one week, what will happen to the students if they dare to complete the course. Unfortunately now our SIMKathy does not have that option.

Help me! My Head is Exploding #ds106
June 26, 2011

Madness of King Jim
Photo by easegill on flickr

Will the students of DS106 survive the Madness of King Jim? Only time will tell. Tune in for more…..

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