Still here, still looking. Inbetween struggling to persuade acceptable performance out of my new PC (oh, the joy of hardware upgrades), I've been attanding a New Media Inspiration Session (don't ask) starting local Youth Service blogs (to a ripple of disinterest) and feeling unusually lonely, despite the various links to other professionals doing similar things ... sole working, well, the problem's in the name, really.
Latest product to roll out of my intray is called Radiowaves (the world's listening) a "safe" blogging/podding/vidcast service for schools and students. Ministry of Justice approved, and currently being rolled out across the nation. Would it be a better solution for me than my current grab-bag of free services?
Having noticed the £42/fee per school and the prominent get-a-quote signs everywhere I get the dintinct impression that this is something designed to be used across a school network. A quick visit it "how it works" confirms this:
Safety and Control
You can see all students work and control what they put live to the public.
Student Web Pages
Each student has their own web page to showcase their work and for you to easily track progress
... so it's an educational tool, and one which assumes that looking at whatever's blogged is something that will be done as a matter of course, for monitoring and assessment purposes (in addition to moderation). Nice idea, not for me.
Of more general interest is sister-site numu, where students post their work in a "safe" (i.e., no comments) space. My hand hovers over play, but I'm not alone in the office today, and it's only very tangetially of relevance. I can see how it would be useful, though: myspace with most of the social function sawn off, to keep the young people concentrated on the music.
It's harder to decide what to saw off when the bulk of what you're doing is supporting independent development of socialisation, useful information sharing, peer support and postitive relationships among young people.
Anyway, radiowaves: shelved for now.