When streams rush together to meet and make their way to the ocean, they foam and bubble, oxygen rich waters feed the area, bringing life and carving through rock and soil, pressing on to become that great expanse that makes our Earth such a beautiful blue planet.
This is the best metaphor for how I experienced OER17 in London recently. The bubbles of energy and fresh air came from new and established parts of my twittersphere, materialising cheerfully to share news of their travels and experiences, we met up joyfully (as can be seen through the many selfies shared at #oer17). Let’s name some of those energizing bubbles! @autumm @bali_maha @suebecks @sheilmcn @MarenDeepwell (perfect name for the metaphor!) @josiefraser @francesbell @paulineridley @leohavemann @catherinecronin @jeffreykeefer @carolak @friedelitis @KellyATerrell @MartinaEmke @muireannOK @BryanMMathers – the list could go on to take up this whole post to be honest! Each one a bubble bringing life, fresh air, inspiration and support to this positive font of refreshment at a time which for our respective contexts takes the word “challenging” The conference theme, the Politics of Open, grasped the potentially dispiriting era of Trump, of Brexit, of austerity, of neoliberal exploitation and exposed it, bringing healing to our world’s open sores. This was a conference of hope, of solidarity, of vision.
Moments I will never forget?
- Connections which will now go deeper thanks to discussions and fellowship enjoyed at OER17 through the #femedtech and #openedsig meetings.
- The participatory nature of the opening keynote and the practical suggestions from Artists without a cause, walking the walk and modelling how we can rock the world (thanks all involved!)
- International fellowship shared at Catherine and Caroline’s workshop Towards Open Praxis which involved us discovering our own unconscious biases in the kindest way possible.
- New inspiration and confidence to contribute to knowledge sharing from Alice White’s Ask a wikimedian drop in
- The invigoration and buzz that comes from great fellowship, shared values and purpose that will help us all push through and overcome our “challenges” together.
I look forward to today’s webinar as an opportunity to return to the stream and rejoice in the bubbles!