Opinion
Markets Opinion

Education Plaza Could Be the Virtual Marketplace for Public Education

October 26, 2007 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

I don’t know how many edbizbuzz readers use C|NET to research electronics purchases, but I’ve often thought public education - and especially school improvement, could use something similar.

Education Plaza has a chance to claim the place. But if it simply moves the typical education publication format to the web, a great opportunity will be lost.
C|Net provides guides for new buyers; professional and consumer reviews; price comparisons; links to sellers; news - everything an electronics buyer needs or wants in the way of information support. Moreover, because the site’s professional reviewers call it as they see it and the site attracts a good number of articulate consumer reviewers, the site draws the kind of traffic that almost requires manufacturers to advertise. So it’s a good example of doing well by doing good.

On October 4, 1105 Media (among other things publisher of T.H.E. Journal) announced its acquisition of Education Plaza.

The site is still a shell and the new buyers have a choice. They can look to C|NET for inspiration, or they can move the k-12 print publication model to the web.

Most k-12 magazines are written not to upset advertisers. There’s nothing wrong with the stories, and the ads bring firms to the attention of buyers, but the reader would hardly rely on the magazine to make a buying decision.

Judging from the site, I fear Education Plaza’s new owners will be inclined to do what they know. Sites that are essentially a database of providers linked to product and service categories are no great technical feat, and not much of a barrier to entry to rivals. (1105 Media already owns EduHound.)

Education Plaza’s competitive advantage is supposed to be exclusive ties to state education agencies and boards of education, and I think it’s helpful, but absent something really useful to buyers, its just not a compelling “must visit” destination. It might make some money, but 1105 Media will miss out on the much bigger business possibility of dominating k-12’s online marketplace.

K-12 education needs its own C|NET, and 1105 Media could build it with Education Plaza.

Related Tags:
Education Market

The opinions expressed in edbizbuzz are strictly those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, or any of its publications.

Events

Classroom Technology Webinar How Pandemic Tech Is (and Is Not) Transforming K-12 Schools
The COVID-19 pandemic—and the resulting rise in virtual learning and big investments in digital learning tools— helped educators propel their technology skills to the next level. Teachers have become more adept at using learning management
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
School & District Management Webinar
Accelerate Learning with Project-Based Learning
Earlier this year, the George Lucas Educational Foundation released four new studies highlighting how project-based learning (PBL) helps accelerate student learning—across age groups, multiple disciplines, and different socio-economic statuses. With this year’s emphasis on unfinished
Content provided by SmartLab Learning
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Data Webinar
Using Integrated Analytics To Uncover Student Needs
Overwhelmed by data? Learn how an integrated approach to data analytics can help.

Content provided by Instructure

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Markets New Magazine Seeks to Bring 'Civil Discourse' to Education Debate
Headed up by former Los Angeles superintendent John E. Deasy, The Line will feature a variety of viewpoints on major K-12 issues.
4 min read
The Line magazine, whose debut print issue is seen above, will present an array of viewpoints on pressing K-12 issues.
The Line magazine, whose debut print issue is seen above, will present an array of viewpoints on pressing K-12 issues.
Markets News in Brief Publishers Get Poor Marks on Common-Core Math Texts
The curriculum-review website EdReports.org has released its first round of results for high school math textbooks, and three of the major publishers performed poorly.
1 min read
Markets McGraw-Hill Education Pulls Textbook Amid Criticism Over Middle East Map
A series of maps in a comparative politics textbook purporting to show Palestinian loss of land enraged pro-Israel groups.
Leo Doran
4 min read
Markets News in Brief Amazon to Launch Website For Open Resources
Amazon Education is working on a new platform that will allow schools to upload, manage, share, and discover open education resources from a home page that in some ways resembles the one shoppers are accustomed to accessing on the massive online retailer's website.
1 min read