Free Speech and Education

A Western professor in Japan has set up a “free speech” zone, and written into his course intro that “free speech” will be maintained, that all students can voice their opinions and views without being called “racist, sexist, homophobic, transphobic etc or violating a safe space”.

This is after Dr Jordan Peterson, the canadian academic, had his planned two month fellowship at Cambridge University cancelled. Having controversial thoughts about not using preferred pronouns with transgender people and a dislike for political correctness, he is seem as a problematic figure, one that Cambridge University didn’t want to have around.

I’m not going to beat about the bush – I think that universities (and places of education in general) should not block, cancel or refuse controversial voices. I think it’s a real shame that time and time again right wing and controversial people are prevented from speaking at places that were set up to expand people’s knowledge.

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Is Tech Killing Skills?

Recently I attended the Voxburner Youth Marketing conference in London, where I was picking up marketing tips that are used with young people, to use to sell better futures for the students I work with.

Within the talks were two by a chap called James who works at Microsoft. I first came across him in a search engine panel talk where they were discussing, amongst other things, how young people don’t tend to type to search for things, they just verbally ask their Siri, or Alexa etc. We even saw a cute video of some British kids talking about tech, with one showing how, despite his dyslexia, he’s able to easily search for his favourite show to watch.

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Help! I can’t use my degree!

A little while ago I wrote an article for another publication, which didn’t get used in the end (so it seems). It’s a different writing style to the one I use on my blog, but I enjoyed writing it so I figured I’d share it here.


When I was 18, I had my whole life mapped out. I was going to study Japanese, and do a year abroad. Then, having graduated top of my class, I would live in Japan and work as a teacher in a local school, marry this guy called Yusuke who I met at 15 when his school took a trip to my hometown, and then live happily ever after.

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How to Change Your Soil

Recently I went to a learning and development meetup called Mindchimp. A small group of us sat together with pizza and diet coke and listened to four amazing speakers talk about how to inspire change.

I really enjoyed myself there; I’ve not had any reason to go to professional meetups for the past year so I let them slide as it’s always a heavy use of my social energy tokens to go to a networking event. But I know deep down that I come away buzzing with ideas.

In particular, one concept from Mindchimp has been buzzing round my brain:

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