ClassDojo has positioned itself as a ‘technical fix’ for the ‘engineering problems’ of classroom behaviour, discipline and more. Behaviour monitoring, content distribution, parent communication, teacher tools, social networking, pedagogic thinking, even relationships between parents and their children have become ClassDojo-fied as part of its Silicon Valley-backed expansion. As such, the expansion of ed-tech products and markets represents the clear commercialisation of public education.
ClassDojo has been dealing with privacy concerns since its inception, and it has well-rehearsed responses. Its reply to The Times was: ‘No part of our mission requires the collection of sensitive information, so we don’t collect any. … We don’t ask for or receive any other information [such as] gender, no email, no phone number, no home address.’ But this possibly misses the point. The ‘sensitive information’ contained in ClassDojo is the behavioural record built up from teachers tapping reward points into the app.
Williamson does however close with a warning, that with GDPR coming in, ‘data danger’ is quickly becoming its own genre: