Thursday, 10 June 2010

One of My Favourite Resources of The Year - NO MORE

I had a break between classes so I thought that I'd go to one of my favourite resource websites Sparklebox and download a few things to make some flashcards for my YL classes.

Much to my annoyance I couldn't seem to open the site because of a proxy error. On closer inspection, I saw an article about the owner of site. Much to my disgust he's a convicted child sex offender who's been in jail  for making and downloading indecent images of children. He was in jail but was still earning money off his site whilst sitting in his cell ! What the hell is wrong with the world?

How did I miss this and why didn't anyone tell me? I've been plugging his site for the past year. Is it morally acceptable to use resources (no matter how good they are) linked to a convicted offender? Should I take his stuff down or is that over-reacting? Did you all know? Am I the only one in the dark?


  1. :( yeah, I think this story was covered by Alex Case and possibly Jason Renshaw. Sorry Leahn. And yes, take the stuff down.


  2. That just shows you how on the ball I've been. My only excuse is that I wasn't active in the blogsphere at the time. God, that was such a good link.... I'm off to read what Mr Renshaw and Case have to say on this matter.... Thanks Karenne

  3. Yes, I couldn't possibly touch or even look at resources made by someone like that.

    I did tweet about that fellow ages ago, and I think Alex may have even blogged about the incident as well.

    Karenne may have been referring to a post I did last year called "The Nightmare Stalking Young Learner Education." It's actually very hard for me to go back and read that post, or respond to any of the comments there - for reasons that I think would be obvious to anyone who teaches kids. The public response paled in comparison to the number of private DMs and emails I got.

    In terms of what we can do about this sort of thing, well - we can talk about it, create awareness, and shine a spotlight on bad cases. I'm still a little staggered that so few professionals are willing to openly talk about it...


    - Jason

  4. Many thanks for alerting me to this. Don't worry Leahn, the same thing happened to me. I've just removed all reference to the site on my blog and for anyone who downloaded the toolbar, he apparently gets money everytime anyone accesses the site through the toolbar, so best delete it from you computer.

  5. I've only vaguely heard of Sparklebox, so wasn't me. Sandy perhaps?? However, Googled it straightaway and found this, with the whole story and links to alternative sites for those shunning that one

  6. Hi Jason, Vanessa and Alex,

    Thanks for taking the time to post your thoughts.

    I read you article at the time of posting and I think you have a point Jason. We do we have to shine a spotlight on cases and inform others.

    I guess if people know about these cases they can choose whether they use the resources or not.

    I have had a mixed reaction about whether it's ok to use the resources once you know...and typically I think people may have been happier not knowing... I am grieving the loss of a great resource but happy that I know.

  7. Hi Leahn

    Luckily I didn't actually know the site in question, but thanks for making this common knowledge (even if it already was). I certainly won't be taking a look at it - he doesn't deserve to get any hits on his site. I don't know what the resources are like so I can't really comment, but I would say that it would be fine to use ideas you have got from the site, being wary however of using handouts with the source written on them.

    Thanks for reporting this.