Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Uploading Class Notes for Payment?

The University of Wisconsin-Madison student paper, The Daily Cardinal reports in its September 22, 2008 issue on a free new service, Knetwit.com that accepts uploads of student and faculty class notes from around the world ("New Website to Pay Students for Note-Taking"). Uploading students and faculty receive payment in "Koins" when their notes are downloaded by others. Koins can be turned into cash or used in the online store.

Employees of Knetwit.com say that the site "supplements" a student's class attendance and doesn't encourage absenteeism. Noah Simon of Knetwit.com adds that the site helps to "create another learning environment where students can network."

Discussion Questions:
  1. How do you know if someone else's notes reflect what a professor really said or demonstrated?
  2. Isn't it easier to go to class and take your own notes? Or bring a digital recorder to get everything a professor says (with their permission, of course)?
  3. Is it ethical and/or legal to post notes based on content developed by someone else (your professor)?
  4. Are notes so personalized that someone else cannot benefit from reading another student's writing? Do most students use so many abbreviations and symbols that the notes are useless to another student?
  5. Isn't it more efficient to ask the professor directly for clarification of a topic if you don't understand?

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