|I keep saying that...|
I heard the term shill a couple of times this weekend. It's not a commonly used piece of language. My favorite moment was when another one of the attendees (and one of the smartest guys I know) said, "yeah Tim, you gotta be careful we don't turn into corporate shills." He said it with a glint in his eye, knowing that we were all at a paid for event the week after I'd been criticizing another corporate event; nothing like some tasty irony.
If you want an idea of the conversation around what some are calling a controversy, me writing at you won't present it well. Go over to the twitter feed and enjoy the diversity of opinion. Some are worried that this is dividing the PLN. The PLN isn't a single group with a single approach. What you'll see on the twitter feed (and in other blog posts) are what complex discussion and disagreement could look like online. It doesn't have to be modeled on a fifteen year old's idea of flaming. I've disagreed with a number of colleagues on there, and that is fine. I still respect them as professionals, and even if we end up agreeing to disagree, I'm still OK with that. Online communication can be deep, nuanced and even contrary without becoming personally inflammatory It's all good, and I'd much rather the disagreements get aired in public than kept in, or hidden.
This will be resolved, as it was started, transparently and publicly online; the best kind of modelling for a new communication medium I can think of.