Rants about the lazy student market

The other day I opened my college web-mail account. There was this one message that struck me and got my attention. In this e-mail, a freshman presented himself as an Anglophile. He stated that he had been analyzing the syllabus texts for the course English for business and economics. Then he went on, and said that he already had explained all the vocabulary that could be questioned on the exam and adding the fact that occasionally, he had also included additional Dutch annotations to clarify certain hard words. Finally he said that at the moment he was very busy writing a critical summary of the texts. According to him, this meant that the only thing that was left to do was incorporating your own opinion. In effect, he wanted to offer both the lists and explanations of the vocabulary as well as the summary of the texts for an “”affordable”” fee of five euros.

Apparently he had been selling the package with success on facebook. So the follow-up plan was to enter a bigger market and a good way was to spam the entire faculty. It took him a fair amount of guts to do that. But why not? Of course, you may want to be rewarded for your creation. And it could certainly be a viable business. Surely, these kind of practices are very common. Students are often lazy. It takes time and dedication to go to classes, write summaries et cetera. Time is precious and if this time becomes available, it could be spent doing fun things. So, what if you could for example outsource your dissertation? And I know this can be done. Consider course summaries. One printer has a smart business model around them. Students are invited to send in there summaries. Each time when the company sells your summary, you get a fixed percentage. I have no idea what this percentage is, but a friend of mine once told me that her total income for one year was about 800 euros. That’s pretty impressive! In other words, this scales very well.

To return to the e-mail story, something funny happened. Another student appeared on the scene. In his cynical reply he wrote that he would provide the summaries for free, ending with kind regards and a laughing smiley. If I would be student one, I wouldn’t be too happy with this. Say goodbye to your business venture. That’s how it goes, if more players enter the market, there usually is fierce competition. Perhaps the student was a bit too optimistic, but at least he tried. On the social web, things are different. It is still a rather new play field where the wisdom of crowds reigns and where free becomes the new business model. We are still figuring out things, but they are slightly adding up.

I am seriously thinking about this Wictures project. You share your lecture summaries. People then correct them and you get better lecture overviews. As a platform, it is about being the intermediation and enhancing process efficiency. The hard part for sure is the implementation. How do we get things done? I hope we don’t fall in a hit-or-miss situation.”,”The other day I opened my college web-mail account. There was this one message that struck me and got my attention. In this e-mail, a freshman presented himself as an Anglophile. He stated that he had been analyzing the syllabus texts for the course English for business and economics. Then he went on, and said that he already had explained all the vocabulary that could be questioned on the exam and adding the fact that occasionally, he had also included additional Dutch annotations to clarify certain hard words.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *