@cogdog Thank you for that paper! so on point to what I am working on!
TpT (Teachers pay Teachers) is super popular among K-12, especially I think in the younger grades, not so much high school.
Thanks for sharing your experience @poritzj. It aligns with the tone of my interviews.
The legality aspect is a bit touchy I think. I don’t ask directly how they share content but it seems that pay for content is shared the same way as free content. Made-for-Hire is when content creator creates something new and gives exclusive rights and actually changes ownership of content. TpT content is not Made-for-Hire (or Pay-for-Hire) because you just buy a copy - thus you don’t have exclusive right to this content. More over TpT provides to purchases multiple licenses for the same content so that you can share it with X amount of people… mostly tiny discount. I am curious how often that feature is used!
The cultural perspective is important because if you want to influence behavior you have to understand what would motivate the person to change. At first my reaction was, OMG they are breaking the law! But this like judging one culture using another culture values. That is not effective, as this is me bringing values from higher-education and trying to have K-12 conform to practices of Graduate Students and Faculty. Perhaps we need to understand that in K-12 the teacher is the end user, even though!, they provide the contented to students. In K-12 world the students are minors - thus no law is broken that they got some math worksheet and the student is not told where it came from. This really does not matter. On the other side, teachers sharing resources among themselves does. For two reasons, one is the boring legal requirement licensing etc. but the other one is building community/network that supports “the teacher”. This I think relates why the research findings are indicating personal attribution is so valuable. K-12 teachers build strong networks. These networks are highly selective. So trust and reciprocity matters!
This has another new dimension if you think about tutoring schools, which are private businesses. These teachers will post free content on Twitter for parents (who are potential buyers of their service, but not end users, I don’t’ know if kids like to use twitter to find math worksheets). So we have free educational content as marketing material. I wonder what the reaction would be if a competitor tutoring company reposted the free content.
I had a conversation with someone in higher education who worked on a online course, non OER, branded and closed to only students enrolled in the course, non of the materials available after you finish the course! The course had all custom content, but based on very few resources. Course had no book requirement. Still the instructor had to provide the references of the course material and especially the book. Apparently, the university reports back to the publisher, even though it was not a required textbook - students did not have to purchase the book, the university book store did not have to stock its shelfs with it… and yet still, the information flows back to the publisher. This really got me thinking. The big publisher have relationships with large organizations such as universities that spend money/resources to benefit the publisher. This is not confirmed yet. But I doubt that publishers pay university money to collect this data. This indicates how valuable acknowledgment really is especially if it comes with extra bits of information like which university what kind of department, what kind of course. Why? So that the publisher can be more strategic about new projects/books. This line of sight is not available by just by looking at their sales data of specific book. They want to know how the book is being used. Back to K-12 culture, I think this is what is missing here. People like when other people use their work (even it is not monetized) but to motivate them to share they also would like to know at a high level how their work is being used. So that they find what really works and they can be better at “marketing” their work. That kind of feedback is motivating for individuals. Because even Free Content needs promotion and support and refinement by the people who use it and adapt it. Right now this is done informally with small groups of teachers. To scale, more trust is required, and I think that the feedback/acknowledgment is big part of trust.