I think we’re going to see a lot more of this in the future. Last week ning dropped the ads for educational ning sites (which I took advantage of today to help a global issues network for international students get started).
Jason Welker (a teacher here at SAS) and I have been working with wetpaint over the past couple of months to help them move to this ad-free model for educational wikis. We have some 30 wikis being used by teachers and students at our school and wetpaint used those wikis as a way to work out how to go ad-free for education. Wetpaint is a great wiki host. Our teachers following Jason’s lead have jumped on wetpaint and it has quickly come the wiki of choice for our staff.
Here is the official press release from wetpaint. Thanks again wetpaint for supporting education!
Check out other cool wetpaint wiki youtube videos here.
Free-for-Education Wetpaint Wikis enhance student learning with easy-to-use collaborative technologies, social networking, and third-party widgets
Seattle, WA – November 6, 2007 – Nearly every educator is looking for opportunities to embrace Web 2.0 technology in the classroom, however teachers have struggled to incorporate Web 2.0 services that use advertising to monetize. Wetpaint (www.wetpaint.com), the consumer-friendly wiki for collaborating and publishing online, today announced it will offer ad-free, no cost wikis to qualified educators so easy online collaboration can extend into any classroom. The availability of ad-free, no cost Wetpaint Wikis builds on the core mission of the company to empower consumers, brands, and now educators to create collaborative Websites written for and by those who share a passion or interest.
“Since the launch of Wetpaint, we’ve heard from several classrooms that have benefited greatly by using Wetpaint to collaborate and share information outside the classroom,” said Ben Elowitz, CEO of Wetpaint. “We also heard from many teachers who were unable to share in the fun because of school-mandated ad-free policies. By removing the ads for educators, Wetpaint Wikis will be available for any classroom that wants to move the learning experience online.”
Thousands of educators worldwide have launched a Wetpaint Wiki, which offers educators the best aspects of blogs, message boards, social networking, and other collaborative technologies to advance School 2.0 initiatives. Teachers are able to extend the learning process out of the classroom by creating “click and type” wiki sites that any designated person can edit. This allows both students and teachers to easily create and participate in collaborative forums for discussion, share lesson plans, and distribute class presentations and much more. In addition, users of the wiki site can easily take advantage of Wetpaint Widgets to add third-party applications like YouTube videos, RSS feeds, Google Calendar, Vizu Polls, chat, and more to offer a fully integrated Web 2.0 solution in the classroom.
“Wetpaint has helped me integrate the Web 2.0 technologies my students love to use in their personal life into their learning process, and now they are actually excited about working on coursework,” says Jason Welker, an AP Economics teacher at the Shanghai American School in China who started a wiki, Welker’s Wikinomics, for his class. “My students have fully embraced the wiki by engaging in peer-to-peer and student-to-teacher collaboration on a broad range of topics from tests, study guides, and other important classroom initiatives that further their learning potential.”
To better understand educators and their unique needs, Wetpaint invited Jonathan Bartels, a high school English teacher and MAEd student at East Carolina University, to become its first Education Ambassador. Mr. Bartels shared his own applications and experiences with School 2.0 to help Wetpaint build out a robust Education Wiki section on Wetpaint.com, and is available to help guide other educators to wiki success by providing suggestions, tips, and answers to questions that teachers post to the Education Wiki pages.
To learn more about qualifying to get ads removed and find great tips for creating education wikis, visit: www.wetpaint.com/education.
Wetpaint is changing the way people share and collaborate about passions and interests online through its consumer-friendly wiki platform. For the first time, anyone who knows how to use Microsoft Word can use Wetpaint to click and type online. Wetpaint has powered more than 500,000 user-created community sites since launching in June 2006. The Seattle startup has also caught the attention of prominent consumer brands such as CBS, Dell, Discovery Channel, HP, HTC, and T-Mobile. These companies have partnered with Wetpaint to create community sites for their most active and knowledgeable users. Wetpaint is backed by Accel Partners, Trinity Ventures, and Frazier Technology Ventures. For more information, visit www.wetpaint.com.