The Magna Carta was signed on June 15, 1215. It laid out so many things about democracy that we just take for granted these days.
I remember studying it in elementary school. It wasn’t the sort of thing that appealed to all students but I had a curious interest in it. Perhaps that was a precursor to the fascination that I have with the British monarchy. Maybe it was the fact that something that was drafted so long ago could have such an impact on the development of Canada as a country.
Possibly the worst thing that today’s politician could be accused of would be to break the intent and be seen to or actually operate above the law of the land.
As I was doing my morning read, I found a number of articles making reference to the Magna Carta. It makes sense; if you do the math it’s 800 years since the original signing and you know how we like birthdays.
In particular, I focused on this article. “Internet ‘Magna Carta’ vote launched by British Library“. When I first read the title, I thought that it was going to be a clause by clause analysis of the document and then have it crowd sourced or something. I couldn’t have been more wrong!
As it turns out, this is a project from the British Library titled “My Digital Rights“. The project is intent to build a “Magna Carta for the Digital Age“.
Given the importance of the Magna Carta to society, it does seem like a real natural. The British Library has the entire website devoted to the project. In it, you’ll find videos, themes and resources appropriate for the classroom. Of course, there are also a collection of teaching resources.
The site is also collecting student votes for an internet “Bill of Rights” using the Magna Carta and its anniversary as a launchpad.
What’s intriguing is that most “Rules for the Internet” are top down driven by teachers, schools, or school districts. Here the end user will have their say. The parallels are almost scary.
It’s an interesting concept and the anniversary certainly sets the stage for the project.
The results from the student voting are supposed to be released today. I wonder what will make the list? Privacy? Safety?