A biker’s tale

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bzE-IMaegzQ?version=3&hl=en_US&rel=0&w=460&h=300%5D

As someone who regularly bikes to work (around 40 minutes each way, each day) I was interested when the link to the video embedded above appeared in my twitter feed this morning. Makes me thankful that I live in a city where cycling is reasonably well catered for with a growing number of cycle-ways, and, thankfully, no silly law that makes it illegal to ride where there isn't one.

The video caused me to reflect on one of the meetings I was a part of yesterday in Auckland, where we were discussing the concept of disintermediation, which, in economic terms, refers to the removal of intermediaries in a supply chain: "cutting out the middleman". At the heart of this concept is the idea that the separation of producer and consumer is minimised, enabling a more direct interaction. This is at the heart of what is happening in the Web2.0 world. Consumers can now deal directly with artists to purchase music without the mediation of a retail music store for instance, and witnesses at a scene can become reporters to the world via blogs and social media sites without the intervention of an editor and publishing enterprise.

In the case of this chap, he had (in his view) a legitimate grievance where he felt he wasn't being listened to, and where the logic of the case against him was flawed. His solution, pay the fine then set about illustrating his point, leaving it to the thousands who may view this on YouTube to draw their own conclusions – and possibly provide words of support and encouragement.

For educators we have to consider – what is the future role of schools, teachers, text books, curriclum etc, in a disintermediated world? I have many thoughts on this and have shared them on numerous occasions, but for now I'll let the biker tell his story and leave you to ponder the significance as I head out to board a plane for the UK.

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