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Who to Follow: Doug Belshaw

Doug Belshaw avatar (2015)I started following Doug Belshaw’s work when Mozilla started pushing out WebMaker and Web Literacy Map resources, then with the Mozilla Open Badge projects as I got involved with digital badges.

His writing makes sense. He is a consistent sharer, curator, tweeter and podcaster. In his self-created sites, he builds using the tools he has helped promote (example: remixing with Thimble). He shares via creative commons. He tweets about his workshop and conference experiences as he travels around the world presenting. He also has a good sense of humor.

He currently seems to be making a career out of consulting. His sites aren’t full of ads, instead It appears he has a good system going with sponsors.

Current Work Reviewed: Essential Elements of Digital Literacies

This is an easy read at 105 pages. Belshaw explains it as a more easy-going version of his Ed.D Thesis. Chapter 5, especially, focuses on the framework he presents as the eight essential elements of Digital Literacy. He does not try to provide a definition of digital literacies (plural, not “literacy”- don’t get him started) but instead insists that “such definitions should be emergent from a particular context in which you find yourself” and that…

“Co-created definitions have more power than those that are simply adopted or imposed” (#nousion anyone?)

There is an entire chapter about memes, and he is all about that remix. One of my favourite (that’s how they spell favorite in the UK) chapters is Chapter 3 “Everything is Ambiguous” where he explores ways of thinking about how we use current terms and cliche’s and suggests ways we can embrace ambiguity when it comes to digital literacies.

I have a pdf copy of the eBook, which I am willing to share with this class upon request, per his Creative Commons parameters.

Doug Belshaw is on point with alliteration

Doug Belshaw and his work can be found at:


Wing it Assignment (10 pts) : “Who to Follow”

Seek out a current leader in the online/digital citizenship realm. This could be a popular blog or book author, a rabid presenter, or an academic leader.

Think of the topics:

  • Digital Literacy/Fluency
  • Information Literacy/Fluency
  • Digital Humanities

Write a brief bio of their credentials and a short summary/review of one of their recent works. Provide us links to their online spaces. Why should we care about them?  What makes them a good digital citizen? How are they practicing what they preach?

Not- so secret objective: Discover and share current experts who are contributing in the field.


Published inGeeking Out

One Comment

  1. I feel like I commented on this already, but I might have imagined that. Or maybe my comment is in moderation. At any rate, this is a great assignment idea that will be included as an option in the next Collection…

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