That was the content of the email I received last night. It was an email alert, automatically generated when someone posts a comment on one of my YouTube screencasts. The latest comment is “I hate this sh!# lesson”. See it here
I have to admit, this made me feel a bit hurt. After all, it’s there for free, nobody is asking this person to watch it. If s/he didn’t like it, why not just stop watching? Fortunately, that same video has received lots of positive comments and a few that were constructively critical – which is great! But there was nothing constructive I could intuit in “I hate this sh!# lesson!”
I shouldn’t have allowed myself to feel hurt. It’s just one mean comment out of sixty eight. But it did make me think about something. I have long advocated that teachers who make podcasts, screencasts and other digital resources should publish them online and make them available to the world. I have often been saddened by the fact that so few teachers are willing to do so.
I wonder how many teachers are prevented from publishing their best work online by the fear that it will draw criticism? It does. Sometimes. And when it does, it hurts. I guess I don’t have a very thick skin.
But thick skin or not, when I read the many other grateful comments from students who claim that this video helped them to understand a concept they previously couldn’t grasp (see screenshot below), I’m encouraged to keep giving my stuff away. After all, that’s why I became a teacher. I’m betting that’s also why you became a teacher. So again, I encourage my readers to take the risk, and give your best work to the world online.