Imagining a future in learning

/ 23 March 2016

I have always enjoyed and learned from Jane McGonigal. Her recent talk at the event in Texas in March of 2016 was particularly evocative. She is “listening for signals from the near future,” and in doing so pointing to a radical new ecology for learning that may be emerging. She talks about it as “learning as earning” and shared this video with the crowd:

I am both immensely intrigued — and terribly troubled — by this image of the future. On the one hand it values personal learning, the possibility that everyone can be a teacher, diverse learning outcomes, lifelong learning, etc. etc. On the other hand the primary metaphor undergirding it all is a market-based economic one. And that worries me greatly. How would we verify learning in this “edublock” bitcoin-inspired (via blockchain as ledger) process? Who would authenticate the learning and who would attach value to it? is it only the market? Is that the fairest mechanism we have? I have to note that my current experience of markets does not justify such trust…