So Iâ€™m sitting here at the Personal Democracy Forum listening to Thomas Freidman read from the three new chapters from TWIF 3.0 (due out in summer.) He starts talking about social activists and social entrepreneurs under the chapter title of â€œIf Itâ€™s Not Happening, Itâ€™s Because Youâ€™re Not Doing It.â€ My brain is going, â€œYes! Yes!â€ This is what I want my kids to understandâ€¦they can change the world in so many new ways. They can create products, test them, market them etc. all by themselves. This is an active world, not passive. This is a place where they can make an impact because, as Friedman says, itâ€™s because itâ€™s easier and cheaper than ever before. How do we prepare our kids more effectively for a world where they can create their own little long tail businesses and support their own long tail causes?
Later he asks, “What happens when all of your neighbors, all of your students have a blog? How thick will your skin have to be?” And he reads about the case in Texas at San Antonio High School where students AND their parents were sued by the school when the kids created a fake MySpace site for an assistant principal calling hear a lesbian and including negative comments and aspersions.
Then he says, “The most important competition moving forward is going to be between you and your own imagination.” And that he sees some positive signs in education that the US is starting to figure it out (despite the fact that “the people down in Washington are brain dead.”)
I have to say, this being the first time I’ve seen Friedman in person, he does come across impressively.