Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Smartgroups RIP

Many of you will know that Smartgroups is closing. Smartgroups was used by various teams within SQA to communicate with teachers and lecturers so its demise will be sorely felt. The groups provided teachers with an opportunity to communicate directly with SQA staff. Some of the groups (such as the PC Passport group) have over 800 members - who ensured that we could not rest on our laurels. However, Smartgroups performance over the last few months has been pretty dire so the news isn't completely out of the blue.

Smartgroups closure is also a loss to the Web too since it grew out of "E-Groups", which was one of the original online communities. It's been bought out several times over the years and the most recent owner (Orange) clearly did not see a viable business model - although it might strike some as strange to pull the plug at the very time when social networking is taking off and reaping huge benefits for some.

Smartgroups is currently providing advice on how to migrate your groups to other providers and I plan to use a mix of Yahoo Groups and Google Groups - neither is as nice to use as Smartgroups although Google Groups beta shows promise.

I've setup a Google Group for e-assessment and another for Internet safety so please visit these websites if you want to subscribe to either of these groups.

Monday, November 06, 2006