So, why am I surprised that it was another collection of assumptions and uncited "facts," including:
1. No distinction was made between the MOOC Model for Digital Practice (Siemens & Cormier) and the current fad of xMOOCs. The author apparently believes that MIT invented the MOOC, and that Al Gore invented the Internet.
2. Due to the author's lack of education regarding education and distance learning, the statement was made that "MOOCs are defined by signature characteristics that include: lectures formatted as short videos combined with formative quizzes..." Obviously the author is too young to remember VHS Classroom (which was classroom lectures formatted into videos and provided with formative quizzes).
3. The article also referred (inaccurately) to a lack of evidence supporting or refuting the effectiveness of xMOOCs. Oops, again this uninformed author is trying to inform us about things he knows little about. There is abundant empirical of evidence of MOOC effectiveness (cMOOC), and several recent studies have deflated the hype balloon for xMOOC effectiveness. The author just didn't perform an adequate literature review before publishing his unvalidated statements. Or perhaps his literature review only included business journals.
4. Finally, the article contained a bold statement that "there is no reason to believe that MOOCs are any less effective a learning experience than their face–to–face counterparts." WHAT? This brash statement ignores decades of research on interactivity, distance learning, and established standards of quality for distance learning and online courses. Is the author trying to say that a video of a boring lecture is no less effective than zombie-sitting in the actual boring classroom? And is that a good quality?
Okay, I'm through venting. If you want to read an INFORMED article to learn what cMOOC and xMOOC really are, and discover what they do or do not have in common with quality online courses, read Sir John Daniel's article: "Making sense of MOOCs: Musings in a maze of myth, paradox and possibility" (Link).