Creatives need critical thinking skills as well, don’t they?
I explained in a previous article why I am removing all of my classes from Skillshare, after more than 3 years of using the platform as a secondary marketplace for my online courses.
Long story short, it all comes down to Skillshare removing a Critical Thinking class I posted more than a year and a half before, stating that according to their updated guidelines, they no longer permit “classes about religion, spirituality, and/or politics at this time, including any critical thinking around these topics.”
I considered it censorship since my course “How To Identify Fake News and Fight Misinformation” — still available on Udemy — is a general critical thinking strategy that can be applied to any field, with content completely independent from the three fields they mentioned.
The class does not have religious, spiritual, or political aspects, and never caused any controversy on any of the platforms that host it.
So they are after anything related to Critical Thinking, a set of skills that represent the building blocks of any educational process.
That doesn’t sit well with me at all, especially since Skillshare is known worldwide as one of the biggest platforms for online education.
Of course, they have the right to target specific audiences and niche down when it comes to the skills they address through the classes they host.
Yes, Skillshare presents itself as a platform for creatives, so one would rather expect courses on art and content creation than any scientific type of content.
And yet, the categories of content that they allow include personal development, health and wellness, leadership, business skills, and data science.
Critical Thinking skills can be useful in any of these fields, and in many more.
Skillshare decided they don’t want it on their platform though.
Or do they?
Are there any Critical Thinking Skills Classes on Skillshare right now?
Yes, there are.
The hypocrisy is strong with these ones.
There are two separate categories of content on Skillshare that address the topic.
And there are several courses that clearly state Critical Thinking in their title.
Now, I don’t know if they are going to be removed as well but let’s assume they won’t.
Then what was Skillshare’s issue with my class?
Oh, the title. That is the only thing that could’ve triggered their coward little self to decide to not risk having the class in the marketplace.
My course referenced “Fake News” and “Misinformation”.
That’s what they did not like.
Even though the strategy inside the class was a general one.
They did the exact thing that shows that their own critical thinking skills, as a group of individuals running a business that’s supposed to be linked to education, are flawed.
They do not encourage free thought, free speech, and therefore free education — in the sense of being allowed to address a topic in a way that makes sense to an instructor and letting potential participants choose between the different approaches and methods.
Skillshare censors education.
Skillshare acts against the very core of a healthy educational environment — diversity of ideas.
They allow classes on reading tarot cards, astrology, and channeling automatic writing — whatever the hell that is —, but learning how to spot a valid source of information is a big no-no on Skillshare.
Environments like this one are a stain on social development through scientific methods, and I want nothing to do with it.
Therefore, I left — a decision I do not think I will ever come to regret.
Being on the right side of educational history is more important to me that being on the good side of Skillshare.
P.S. Just so you understand how ridiculous they are when it comes to skills they do not allow to be addressed on the platform, their list of restricted topics includes mathematics. Yup, there’s nothing more controversial out there than math. And no creative would ever need it… right? Everything is fine though, just do a tarot reading next time you need to calculate your taxes. Skillshare’s got you covered there.