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[xmca] category quandry

Since it is the season for carnivale and I just saw the original of the enclosed, I was led to wonder whether it is more apt to say academics are in the catgeory of shills or the category of carnival barkers?  
Maybe it is very common??  And very welcomed?? Or very successful??  The mission mentioned in sentence two appears to be related to sales...
I have replaced identifying information with XX's in the enclosed.  The rest is verbatim, from a striving R1 public university in the US.  I wonder if a campy vampy end to the "free" 15 hours would be expected?  Maybe, "Come up and see me sometime, boys" and a feather boa...
From: Office of the Provost [mailto: XXXXXXX@uni.edu] On Behalf Of Office of the Provost
Sent: Wednesday, February 06, 2013 9:49 AM
Subject: XXUNINAMEXX MOOCs: A Message from the Provost 
   XXUNINAMEXX has adopted a MOOC model that we believe is manageable and scalable. The MOOC is an electronic delivery of structured content modeled to seek diverse opinions, encourage individualized learning, encourage participant connectedness, and generate opportunities in service of xxx’s mission. True to the purpose of MOOCs, XXUNINAMEXX faculty and administration are dedicated to the belief that much knowledge can be structured in accessible, affordable, and high quality educational experiences for all global citizens. To that end, XXUNINAMEXX MOOCs will provide the rough equivalent of one hour of a three hour course (15 contact hours), in a free, online platform-based environment.

   University-sponsored MOOCs  will be subject to both selection and review processes, and a committee is being established for this purpose. Any faculty may create a MOOC in much the same way that they currently publish and promote other types of scholarly work, but without authorization they cannot imply or claim University sponsorship. If a faculty member is selected to build a XXUNINAMEXX MOOC, however, financial and marketing support will be made available. MOOCs that are funded and receive technical and academic support, for instance, will be those that attract students to courses that are necessary to complete a XXUNINAMEXX certificate or degree program.

    The idea is that a XXUNINAMEXX MOOC will serve as an introduction to an online, for-credit course, with credit received upon successful completion of the MOOC, plus enrollment and successful completion of the full course. Obviously, students may opt simply to take the MOOC for no credit. XXUNINAMEXX MOOC proposals will be evaluated in part with this completion option in mind.

    Proposals for a XXUNINAMEXX MOOC should be sent to Dr. XXXXXXX, Associate Provost, Distance Education [XXXXXX@uni.edu or XXXstreet_address].
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