One can conceive of two rough categories of work, creative work and noncreative, repetitive labor. Creative work results in the design of something new. Once created, that new artefact can be reused by others. Noncreative, repetitive labor consists of repeating a task in order to achieve some goal that is useful, but does not result in any new ideas, technologies, service or art form. Both are needed in order for present day society to operate. Creative work is valued more by our culture, reflected in patents, trade secrets and competitive advantages. Unicorns are created based on a creative new idea, while factory worker receives a small wage for their repeating the same task over and over. What is the value of new ideas compared to repetitive tasks? Perhaps intelligent robots will one day eliminate most forms of human labor, and as automation increases, we are approaching that limit. How do we rethink our system of rewards to be a fair society and not one of even greater inequality? It would seem to me that there needs to be a universal basic income that guarantees a minimum level of human wellbeing, and creatives can be rewarded, but not excessively as we have proven over and over again that the wealthy lack the emotional maturity to live within planetary boundaries. For example, the entire notion of luxury goods, that are high carbon footprint by design and designed to appeal to the consumerist elite does nothing more than reinforce inequality and degrade our ecosystems. People should be rewarded for their creativity but also for giving their time doing noncreative work to benefit others. After all, time is the most precious commodity of all, and if we use part of it to do a necessary but unfulfilling task, we deserve to be recognized for giving away a part of our life....which is what we do when we work at an unfulfilling job that just pays the bills.
I agree that it is a valuable resource that needs to be incentivised in some way. Their existence and low adoption rate all point to a bigger opportunity. The underlying logic is to make learning more accessible. However, it is done within a siloed context. What is the bigger goal here? It is to promote high efficacy of cumulative cultural evolution (cce). If the problem is reframed from this deeper, cultural, anthropological perspective, we could learn from this failure of MOOCs to redesign an open knowledge commons for humanity that is the education system for the future of humanity. So in essence, not only incentifying them, but remaking them in a new system that mitigates this problem.