Saturday, November 08, 2008

From sweatshop to sweetshop

Mill HQ

The UKLA regional conference in Sheffield was a great success. Celebrating the National Year of Reading, it was deftly steered into the terrain of new literacies. The Digital Readings conference made me reflect on how in the instructional regimes of print literacy the working conditions are hard, the tools old and worn, the hours long, and the labour rarely appreciated. These are sweatshop conditions in which the pay is rubbish and even your bosses are working for 'the man'. In comparison digital literacies seem like a sweetshop, full of goodies that are colourful and interesting. It promises fulfilment (if you've got some small change) and it seems like fun, even though there's always someone saying it's bad for you!..... and you get all that by shifting down a row and two spaces to the left - I'd call it keyboarding, but some call it grapheme substitution.

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