There is a lot of chatter today about the announcement by NING that they will no longer offer a free hosting option. In fact, if you do a twitter search on 'ning' you'll see many, MANY new updates waiting for a page refresh within a fraction of a second of accessing the page. Aside from sympathy for the employees at NING who were laid off, and also for those who have invested a lot of energy into their NING communities without realizing that they can't move their content elsewhere, I'm feeling indifferent about this move. I've never warmed up to NING as a platform, and got a little bored checking out all the new communities popping up that sounded interesting, but alas, fizzled very quickly. Perhaps a fee-based service will help to reduce the number of inactive spaces.
In any case, the real reason for this blog post is to point to something fantastic that is happening RIGHT NOW as a result of this announcement from NING. Alec Couros fired up an Alternative to Ning Google Doc that took off like wild fire. He posted this to Twitter:
SCoPE, since we'll gladly offer Moodle SIG space for educational practitioners and researchers.
This project could develop into quite the useful toolkit for community stewards!