Three months ago I blogged about concerns I have over McGraw-Hill’s MH Campus portal. If you are not familiar with the tool, MH Campus allows faculty to easily insert content from McGraw-Hill and its partners into their course. This includes some content that is available at no charge to faculty; but make no mistake, using this content comes with a price.
I submitted a question about open sharing at a MH Campus webinar a few weeks ago. My question was not addressed live, but everyone who submitted questions was promised an eventual response. My answer came today, and McGraw-Hill made it clear: “MH Content is not for sharing.”
My question: Many of our faculty are interested in sharing their course materials on the open web. Does the MH Campus allow for this its free content to be shared on the open web. If so, why not share the free MH Campus materials as Open Educational Resources with an open license?
The answer to your question is No. Faculty can share any of their own material with others but MH Content is not for sharing. The terms of service for MH Campus can be found at mhcampus.com under the legal tab.
It’s a shame, really, because with the same basic MH Campus tool plus an open license McGraw-Hill could have done something really innovative.
Most faculty understand that the teaching IS sharing. They are content experts after all — the same group publishers draw from when developing their own expensive content with the old model. But faculty who mix MH Campus and similar materials with their own course content will find their ability to share the result is severely limited.
There is an important lesson here: weaving the proprietary in with the open renders the result unsharable. So if you want to keep control, keep it open!