NSL Blog

Update on the No Straight Lines open access participatory book

March 13, 2012

Dear friends and colleagues,

As you know 2 months ago I launched the project No Straight Lines: making sense of our non-linear world. http://www.no-straight-lines.com

I wrote to you all personally, explaining the project and why I thought it would be relevant to you. (Which took some time – as I wanted it to be a personal invitation).

You were all invited to come and read the entire work in an open access participatory format where you could also ask questions of me personally and if you wanted, to discuss the material.

Feedback on the work itself has been extremely good, and many have found it challenging and thought provoking. Amazon reviews: http://ht.ly/9BTuV

Number of readers
From a standing start over 6500 unique visitors have come to read no straight lines in under 8 weeks. With no marketing other than my personal invitation, some blogs and a little help from my friends.

A wonderful experience
It is a wonderful feeling knowing that people from around the globe are simultaneously reading. And many who have read the book in the browser format enjoy the experience.

But sadly many people left before logging in – as we ask for Social ID login just so we know that people are who they say they are for moderation purposes.

Learning curve
What was not clear, our learning curve, was that people felt uncomfortable logging in with their social ID, without a clear explanation about  how that data would be used, understandably.

So to be clear, we do nothing else with the data other than as a form of verification and that we ask if you would let your network know you are reading the book. Having spent 7 years working on it I thought that was a fair exchange.

Moving forward
So in listening to that feedback we have allowed people to read without logging in up to the first chapter so you can get a feel for the platform and get a better idea about the project.

Open access participatory epub book looks like this

So, if you felt uncomfortable about the login process I hope this clears up any misunderstanding.

Fancy a decent challenging read? Then walk this way.


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