I am so glad that PUB802 is a required course as part of the MPub. The course allowed myself to become better versed and informed about how the landscape of technology is affecting and influencing the business and meaning of publishing. I understand how important it is to take into consideration of how technology is impacting not only the publishing industry or moving forward in starting my career in publishing, but also its influence on every aspect of our personal lives and learning about how it already is and will impact society in the future.
There are times that the class only bred my cynicism with how bleak it could make publishing’s future, but many times that allowed me to see what opportunities and untapped potential there can be if publishing and technology interact more. I firmly believe now that “traditional publishing” needs adopt and use more practices with technology, data analysis, online business models and optimizing the digital reading experience so that they do not fall behind with the new types of business models and to enhance the publishing practice.
The learning experience for PUB802 was overall a solid experience. It was an interesting learning pedagogy and one that I believe works well for what the goals of this class are. I think this must be one of the most engaged I have been in with the class readings thanks to using Hypothe.is for annotations. Instead of the readings being done alone then having the discussions start off in class class, having the first run of discussions through Hypothe.is then being able to delve deeper into a discussion in class allowed for greater understanding of the topics and I believe I could retain much more information because of that.
Then writing the reading responses afterwards really helped to solidify what I could retain because it made me articulate what my opinion was before the class, during the class and after and how much it had changed from then. I am much more confident in myself that I can follow these types of conversations about evolutions in technology and its relation to publishing much better now. I would encourage to continue using online annotations and blog posts for the class.
While Hypothe.is was a great tool to use, I believe that the class could have benefited by having more readings from academic sources or open access journals. Many of the readings were blog posts or news articles which I think were of lesser quality and much more opinionated without much research to back it all up. It was also obvious that some articles were self-promotional pieces too.
The student-led discussions were a fun and engaging way to discuss each week’s topic. My only critique is that there were times that the discussions did seem to lag and I wish there was more mini-lectures or lessons from Professor Alperin. I would suggest that the format from the class could be two hours allotted to a student-lead discussion: one hour for discussion about the readings and one hour for an activity. Then the remaining class time could be used for a mini-lecture just to avoid any possible inaccuracies or bringing up any of the readings that were on the b-side that were not in the main readings, but still had valuable points and information. I think there is certainly much left to be desired there.
My biggest takeaway from the class was learning more about the potential and threats of Artificial Intelligence. It was great to see some of the myths debunked in that class that I think allowed everyone to become more aware of what changes it could bring in the near future. I think that it has the potential to take over many professional jobs and publishing is not an exception. That is what makes it so important for publishers to start seriously considering what they can do to adapt and change.