June 09, 2003
How to educate with the Internet

Alice Bachini linked (go to her main site and scroll down to "anti-semitism" if that first link doesn't work) to this over the weekend. It's a denunciation, as Alice's heading indicates, of the new anti-semitism, of the sort that Islamists and the new left are now accused of.

My point is nothing to do with the fact that I personally agree strongly with the message being presented. (I might as well be honest about that, and acknowledge that it may have influenced what follows.) My point is that this seems to me to be very well presented argument, and a model of how to use the internet to put across ideas. Aesthetically it is very satisfactory. And it is well-written.

I loathe the use of the word "education" to describe propaganda, and this is propaganda. The central dishonesty in the education/propaganda blurring being that ideas are being put across which the protagonist of them knows to be controversial, buit he conceals the fact that they are controversial and instead trying to say that they are as universally agreed about as the facts, say, of which city is the capital of which country, and of what 62 + 35 equals. Nevertheless, this particularly item of propaganda, it seems to me, has a lot to say to educators about how to communicate with the latest technology.

I'd love to be told of other equally excellent (or better) examples of how to put ideas across on the Internet.

Posted by Brian Micklethwait at 10:52 PM
Category: The internet