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How to Produce a Critique of ‘Open’ in 3 Easy Steps

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No. 16. How to Produce a Critique of ‘Open’ in 3 Easy Steps 


Step 1)  Set up something you are calling ‘open’ as a straw man by projecting a narrow and weak understanding of openness onto it.

Step 2) Attack this understanding of ‘open’.*

Step 3) Present your own version of ‘open’ as an alternative. This allows you to be the hero of your own narrative by in effect saving ‘open’ from itself.  


No need to worry about your version of open having already been explored in a more nuanced and rigorous fashion within the movements for open access, open education, open knowledge and so forth. The beauty of this simple, easy to replicate 3-step process is that, by setting up open as a straw man and defining it in a way that serves your own interests, you avoid having to pay attention to any of this.  

References available on request. 


* Important: if your critique involves making a careful reading of thinkers from the history of openness, you absolutely must, must, must remember not to show the same kind of ethical responsibility and hospitality toward contemporary thinkers of what you are calling ‘open’. 


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