The Project:

Make no mistake about the name; these are no fools, even if they are humorous folk. Jesters is really an initiative more than a project. It arose from a plaguing question for a distinct group of people in educational technology: What do you do if you run a MOO, and find that it rules your life, yet you are not remunerated for your efforts? With the goal of answering this question, the Jesters group was formed, lead by DaMOO's Janet Cross and Kristian Fuglevik. The Jesters meet regularly on DaMOO to discuss how MOOs must be promoted to successfully integrate their important technology into curricula, and how to have administrators of these services compensated.

What's It All About?

The Jesters group consists of wizards and other administrators from various MOOs, teachers and other educators who are concerned about MOO integration, and regular MOO users who feel that they can contribute to the decision making of the Jesters.

The Jesters began meeting on 20 November 1996, and have since conducted four sessions. They try to meet every Wednesday, on DaMOO, at 8:00 am and 5:00 pm Pacific Standard Time. Given the often haphazerd scheduling of those in the educational field, though, regular meetings are not always possible. However, Jesters maintains several web pages on DaMOO's website.

The Jesters' mission statement is clear:

" We are court jesters, we who design, administrate, and teach on MOOs. We oscillate between play and work. We play on MOOs and MOO for work. We take our educational MOOing seriously, yet often languish outside the high court circle of influence. In addition, many individuals currently responsible for designing, developing, and maintaining educational MOOs do so without pay and with little recognition. Dr. Eric Mercer, an administrator at Diversity University MOO, maintains, 'Everyone who works on MOOs for educational purposes should have the opportunity to be paid.' "

The Jesters web pages also contain a survey form for interested or concerned people to fill out, indicating their stance and ideas on MOO projects, former responses to those surveys, a Call for Participation, which outlines the Jesters' goals, and the complete logs of all previous Jesters meetings. New announcements and announcements of upcoming meetings are also kept here.

What's Going On With It Now?

Previous meetings have served well to focus the Jesters group's intentions and goals. Thus far, they have identified a clear need to get institution administrators onto and aware of MOOs and their power, flexibility, and advantages. They have also identified the need to promote the MOO environment as a powerful and flexible teaching tool to a wider audience than is now aware of the technology. Finally, they have decided that funding must be pursued, and that MOOs need to be expanded, and the administrators paid for their work. To this end, several Jesters have decided to band together and collaboratively pursue grants and other funding. Above all, though, the Jesters feel that word needs to be spread about MOOs in education, and the great benefits educators can gain from using the MOO environment in their pedagogies.

People interested in finding out more about the Jesters project, or participating in the Jesters meetings should contact Janet Cross (aka Jai) or Kristian Fuglevik (aka Gofy) at DaMOO.


Click a link to see a description of the project:

| Project Gutenberg | Epiphany | Composition in Cyberspace | Crossroads |
| Hyperfiction Narrative Workshop | Netoric | Jesters |

Click to Visit a Site:

| Project Gutenberg | Epiphany | Composition in Cyberspace | Crossroads |
| Annenberg/CPB | Hyperfiction Narrative Workshop | Netoric | Jesters |

Direct comments to Scott Kapel