Social Informatics is not the most profiled course within the Computer Science or Information Science studies in Norway. It seems to me that it`s not only students that consider social issues of computing boring and unimportant, but that many lecturers also view Social Informatics as a nuisance.

For those lecturers who understand the importance of social issues of computing, there are three things to consider:




Engage your students, grab their hearts and minds, and you may throw the text books away and enjoy Social Informatics together with your students.


For those who missed the 6th National Conference on sexual abuse of children in digital media, it is now possible to view all the contributions on our Tv Web.

For those of you out there who does not understand Norwegian, the conference had one presentation in English: “Educational Consequences of Media Development”, by Beata Godejord, PhD. This contribution takes a critical look at some of the negative aspects of the Media world of our kids, and what Teacher Education can do about it.

A bit of this and that

The Internet is filled with resources one should know about, especially if you are in the field of distance education. For a nice and comprehensive list of Web 20 applications, take a look at my good friend Tom Erik Holteng`s blog.

Some links I have come across today is VSide, a 3D world calling itself the Facebook of Virtual Worlds. For those already exploring Second Life, this might be a place worth checking out. Worlds in Motion wants to build an Online World Atlas, and that might be useful for those of us who want to keep track of the various virtual worlds and online multiplayer games on the Net. For those who want an overview of Distance Education resources, the Distance-Educator.com is the place to start. Also check out the BlogTalk Radio and the eLearning Technology Talk.


The ability to identify people online is an old topic, and within the field of preventing sexual abuse of kids in digital media it`s quite important. One group of Social Informatics students at Nesna University College showed the participants of the 6th National Getting Involved conference how easy it is to create false Norwegian National Identification Numbers, and thus create an online fake identity that are trusted both by those who operate online services and the users of these services.

Thomas Bogevold, Jonas Tindvik Furu, with Camilla Falch in the background,
at the 6th National Getting Involved Conference, 16th of April 2008
. Topic: ID on Internet.

Another way of identifying people is the concept of OpenID.

OpenID is described as “an open, decentralized, free framework for user-centric digital identity. OpenID starts with the concept that anyone can identify themselves on the Internet the same way websites do-with a URI (also called a URL or web address). Since URIs are at the very core of Web architecture, they provide a solid foundation for user-centric identity.” (Source: ifacethoughts)

As a Social Informatics this is a fascinating concept, not the least because it begs the question; Does a set of URL`s constitute a real and true ID or just a collection of carefully prepared “data” to build a false ID?

Take a look at the OpenID service called ClaimID. How would YOUR OpenID look like?

Per Arne Godejord

Welcome to day 2 of the 6th Getting Involved Conference!

The opening of the second day of the conference is at Wednesday the 16th of April, 09:15 hour, and the last of that day`s speakers will appear at 14:45. For those of you out there who does not understand Norwegian, we have one presentation in English and that is at 11:15 – 12:00; “Educational Consequences of Media Development”, by Beata Godejord, PhD.

Follow the live feed of the conference at the conference WebTV page.

Welcome to day 1 of the 6th Getting Involved Conference!

The opening of the conference is at 10:15, and the last of today`s speakers will appear at 15:30.

Follow the live feed of the conference at the conference WebTV page.

Conference 2007

Is today´s teacher education up to speed on the world of our kids? Is it able to give teacher education students the knowledge necessary to link Piaget, Vygotsky and different pedagogical theories to the media reality of our children?

If not, how can we expect teachers to help prevent abuse, sexual and otherwise, of children in digital media?

This and other highly fascinating questions and expert advice will be brought before you on this year´s Getting Involved conference. And for those who cannot appear at the conference center in Mo i Rana, a live feed of the conference will be placed at the conference WebTV page.

The feed will be stored as part of our ongoing documentation of our work against sexual abuse of children in digital media.

Since the fall of 2002, Department of Computer Science, Nesna University College, has been working with a project called “Getting involved”. The project was a part of the undergraduate course in Computer Science, and the course Social Informatics. The main focus of the project is to try to fight the constant sexual abuse of children on the Internet with information and awareness projects directed both towards the computer students of Nesna University College and towards the local computer industry and local primary, secondary and upper secondary level schools.