posted on Feb, 16 2013 @ 12:10 PM
OP-- my take is this:
Much as the the RIAA and the MPAA may feel about torrent sites, I'm sure the textbook companies and educational institutions aren't in love with
the fact that there are now so many free sources of knowledge out there. In many cases, quite extensive knowledge. I dare say I've learned more via
the internet than I have through most of my formal education. (I also happen to be one of those weird guys who finds science interesting, among other
things, and enjoys learning.)
On the other hand, the educational institutions (and related, supporting businesses like textbook publishers) do have an ace up their sleeve that
groups like the RIAA and MPAA do not have-- A "monopoly" on Higher Education.
It is true that for some professions, or in some situations, it may be possible to get a sufficiently "high level" and well-paying job with the just
the knowledge inside your head, and the skills at your fingertips. For example, when starting as a low-level lab assistant, and working your way up to
being a full-fledged lab technician (not the best example, but it's off the cuff...) However, as we all know, to even get your foot in the
door in most places, or any kind of recognition whatsoever, you need a little piece of paper saying you have a "degree" or a "certificate"
from an accredited educational institution.
Learn all you want outside the context of a school program (and I recommend you do) but unless you have a way of getting your foot in the door, or
getting some kind of major recognition, you may be somewhat limited in career choice unless you have a nice shiny degree working to your advantage.