Badge

Credential, esp associated with "gamification" (Real World Game)

how many badge systems? who runs them?

  • Mozilla Drumbeat led to OpenBadges http://openbadges.org/
    • User Story collection http://openmatt.wordpress.com/2011/03/17/badges-in-the-real-world/
      • Eduardo, High School student, making digital videos on the side. Badges demonstrate his breadth and non-academic skills to his teachers so they respect and serve him better. (Wouldn't just showing the video demonstrate that?)
      • Sara, High School student, teaching herself Web Dev and doesn't want to go to college. Badges are credentials for her to show potential employers in interview process. (Wouldn't portfolio of paid freelance projects be better? Of course, getting a project that involves actual dev work is hard...)
      • Sal, 32-yo accountant, father, wants to move into "environmental policy". He also finds several P2PU peers who already have the Green Evangelist badge. He browses their badge collection to identify other skills to work on, and asks for advice on breaking into the field. (That networking was probably more valuable than the badges.)
      • Karen, hiring manager at a top company. Karen has changed her interview questions and styles repeatedly to try and uncover these qualities and skill-sets up front. But she still hasn’t found a satisfying way to predict candidate success and return on investment. (Maybe having a trial project would be much more effective? Also, would you really trust a badge to validate someone's Team Work abilities? When considering two candidates who seem roughly equivalent on paper and in interviews, for example, Karen can review their badges to see that one has earned the Team Player and Good Communicator badges from peers, with outstanding endorsements. I'm very skeptical about this. Has the problem with her previous hires really been that they were competent but not Team Players, or that they weren't Team Players because they really weren't very competent? In my hiring experience it's 80% the latter.)
        • Jin, 22-yo artist moving to new city, needs to transfer her soft reputation (in arts-support). (Has she actually been paid for this support work? Would a LinkedIn recommendation from peers/bosses do the job? Simple recommendation letters? More to the point, has she actually accomplished anything with this work?)
    • In the short-term, as long as only 20-40% of people do it, it's mainly valuable as Signalling some sort of Self Direction and Brand You determination. (There may be a negative signal here too.) In the long run, these seem too soft, and thus everyone will get whatever badge they want.

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