The New Media Consortium: Its Sudden Death and What Comes Next

The following post is the first “guest post” to ever appear on Building Creative Bridges. Written by long-time NMC (New Media Consortium) colleague Bryan Alexander, it initially appeared on Bryan’s own Future Trends Forum blog at https://bryanalexander.org/2017/12/19/the-new-media-consortium-its-sudden-death-and-what-comes-next/; appears here with his permission; and is part of an effort by many of us to maintain the dynamic, vibrant, global ed-tech community the NMC fostered before suddenly announcing its dissolution yesterday.

Bryan Alexander

Yesterday many of us learned to our shock that the New Media Consortium (NMC) was going to be liquidated.

We learned via an email announcement, as follows:

The New Media Consortium (NMC) regrets to announce that because of apparent errors and omissions by its former Controller and Chief Financial Officer, the organization finds itself insolvent. Consequently, NMC must cease operations immediately. NMC would like to sincerely thank our loyal and dedicated community for its many vital contributions since its inception in 1994. NMC is grateful to its current executive director and NMC staff for their tireless efforts to connect people at the intersection of innovation and technology. NMC will be promptly commencing a chapter 7 bankruptcy case. A trustee will be appointed by the court to wind down NMC’s financial affairs, liquidate its assets and distribute any net proceeds to creditors. The case will be filed in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of California. Please understand that NMC’s assets may be sold as part of the bankruptcy process and another entity, potentially a nonprofit, may yet go forward with our summer conference. Nevertheless, before sending any payment for 2018, please contact our counsel Reno Fernandez at (415) 362-0449 ext. 204, and he will connect you with the trustee once he or she is appointed.

Black background in the original.  This is a screen capture.

Shortly after receiving this Campus Technology asked for my reaction.  Here’s what I told them:

I am heartbroken and gobsmacked. The news comes as a terrible shock. My heart goes out to the fine NMC staff, who don’t deserve this. Instead they deserve being snapped up by smart employers, stat. I also rue the blow to the community of splendid innovators that gathered around NMC since the 1990s. Can we use our imagination and technology to build something new in the NMC’s ruins?

I stand by those words.

Right after the announcement broke Twitter lit right up with questions, pleas, mourning, and brainstorming.  I had just finished a long…

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