Archive for November, 2008

Discussion of how to best introduce grad students to communications, at Columbia, Tuesday Dec 2, 10am-noon

November 23, 2008

Tuesday December 2

Roundtable on Introducing the Field of Communications/Media Studies to Graduate Students

with Michael  Schudson (Columbia) Helga Tawil  Souri (NYU) Shannon Mattern (New School)

Stabile Student Center, Journalism 10:00am – noon

all are welcome

Amanda Michel – November 12th, 2008 – 3:30pm, NYU

November 10, 2008

Amanda Michel – November 12th, 2008 – 3:30pm
“Technology, Networks, and Journalism”

Amanda Michel is Director of OffTheBus, citizen-powered political journalism. Since 2003 she has worked as National Director of Generation Dean, created and managed the MediaCorps program for the Kerry-Edwards campaign, co-founded the New Organizing Institute in the wake of the 2004 election, worked at Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet & Society, and worked on Assignment Zero, a Wired and collaboration.

Christina Dunbar-Hester at NYU, Wed Nov 12, 12:15-1:30pm

November 10, 2008

much recommended…

– – –

Department of Humanities and Social Sciences Colloquium Series:

Wednesday, November 12, 12:15-1:30pm, Rogers Hall 304, NYU Polytechnic Institute

Christina Dunbar-Hester, Postdoctoral Fellow of the Annenberg
School for Communication, the University of Pennsylvania.

“Do New Media Have Old Politics? Technological Adoption and
Resistance in Contemporary Media Activism”

This paper contextualizes discourses surrounding new media
technologies by examining activism around community media, using as a
case study an activist group who since the mid-1990s have advocated
for greater citizen access to low-power FM (LPFM) radio.  I argue that
the significance of new and emerging communication technologies can be
grasped most effectively when emerging technologies are considered in
a dynamic field that includes older technologies; emerging
technologies are often viewed through the lens of patterns of use and
interpretation of older technologies, at least initially.  I follow
the activists’ assessments of not only FM radio but emerging
Internet-based technologies, including webstreaming and wi-fi
networks. In practice, the activists circumspectly negotiate expanding
their efforts to encompass community wi-fi networks, while trying to
retain the vision, flavor, and organizing strategies from their LPFM

Gabriella Coleman at Columbia, November 13, 12-2pm

November 8, 2008

Columbia Communications Colloquium

Gabriella Coleman (NYU), Old and New Net Wars Over Free Speech

270B IAB noon – 2:00pm, Thursday November 13
Old and New Net Wars over Free Speech, Freedom and Secrecy or How to Understand the Hacker and Lulz battle against the C0$

In this talk I present a cultural history and political analysis of one of the oldest Internet wars, often referred to as “Internet vs Scientology,” which in recent times has witnessed a different incarnation in the form of “Project Chanology,” which is orchestrated by a group called Anonymous who has led a series of online attacks and real world protests against Scientology. I argue that to understand the significance of these battles and protests, we must examine how the two groups stand in a culturally antipodal relation to each other. Through this analysis of cultural inversion,  I will consider how long-standing liberal ideals take cultural root in the context of these battles, use these two cases to reveal important political transformations in Internet/hacker culture between the mid 1990s and today and finally will map the tension between pleasure/freedom (the “lulz”) and moral good (“free speech”) found among Anonymous in terms of of the tension between liberal freedom and romantic/Nietzschian freedom/pleasure.

Changing Media Landscape 2008, Columbia Journalism School, November 11, 6:30pm-9pm

November 8, 2008

Columbia J-school’s annual look at the media revolution, with several media influencers. This is a different kind of panel, with a real conversation among the participants and audience – with no Powerpoint in sight.

You can attend in person or see it online at (live or archived)

The Hearst Foundation, Columbia Journalism New Media Program and
Columbia J-school Alumni Association present…

Columbia-Hearst Journalism Dialogues

Tuesday, November 11, 2008
6:30-9 pm

Sewell Chan, blogger/bureau chief, New York Times “City Room” blog (coming from midtown)

David Cohn, J2008, founder,, a new crowdfunding investigative journalism project; winner of $300,000 Knight News Challenge grant (coming from San Francisco)

Adriano Farano, executive editor, – the first multilingual European current affairs online magazine (coming from Paris)

Erica Smith, news designer, St. Louis Post-Dispatch and “Paper Cuts” blogger (coming from St. Louis)

Jacob Weisberg, chairman and editor-in-chief Slate Group – Slate, Slate V, The Root, and the Big Money (coming from downtown)

MODERATOR: Prof. Sree Sreenivasan, Dean of Student Affairs

Tuesday, Nov. 11, 2008
6:30-7:00 pm – networking reception – drinks and light food
7-8:30 pm – discussion (also live webcast)
8:30-9 pm – reception and networking continue

No RSVP required. No charge. Open to the public.

Columbia Graduate School of Journalism
Lecture Hall, 3rd Floor – 116th St & Broadway
[ #1 train to 116th St or get directions:

Computers & Society, upcoming events

November 6, 2008

Lawrence Lessig – November 9th, 2008 –

6:00pm – 7:00pm
Warren Weaver Hall, Room 109
251 Mercer Street
New York, NY

“Remix: Making Art and Commerce Thrive in the Hybrid Economy”

Lawrence Lessig is a Professor of Law at Stanford Law School and founder
of the school’s Center for Internet and Society. Prior to joining the
Stanford faculty, he was the Berkman Professor of Law at Harvard Law
School, and a Professor at the University of Chicago. He clerked for Judge
Richard Posner on the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals and Justice Antonin
Scalia on the United States Supreme Court.

For much of his career, Professor Lessig focused on law and technology,
especially as it affects copyright. He represented web site operator Eric
Eldred in the ground-breaking case Eldred v. Ashcroft, a challenge to the
1998 Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act.

Professor Lessig is the author of Remix (2008), Code v2 (2007), Free
Culture (2004), The Future of Ideas (2001) and Code and Other Laws of
Cyberspace (1999). He serves on the board of many organizations including
the Creative Commons project which he founded.


Andrew Rasiej – November 17th, 2008 – 3:30pm
“Democracy, Civic Action, and Politics in a Networked World”

Andrew Rasiej is a social entrepreneur and the Founder of Personal
Democracy Forum , an annual conference and community website about the
intersection of politics and technology. He is also the co-founder of
techPresident.  He has served as an adviser to Senator Barack Obama,
Senator Hillary Clinton, Senator Tom Daschle, Congressman Dick Gephardt,
the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and the Democratic
Congressional Campaign Committee on the use of Information Technology for
campaign and policy purposes. Mr. Rasiej also maintains the position of
senior technology adviser for the Sunlight Foundation.


Susan Crawford – December 1st, 2008 – 3:30pm

Susan Crawford joined the faculty of the University of Michigan Law School
on July 1, 2008.  She teaches internet law and communications law. Last
year she was a visiting professor at Michigan and at Yale Law School
(spring 2008).  She is a member of the board of directors of ICANN and is
the founder of OneWebDay, a global Earth Day for the internet that takes
place each Sept. 22.

Alain Badiou, November 6

November 5, 2008

Alain Badiou will be speaking at the Henry Street Settlement for the launch of Lacanian Ink #32.

“Is the word ‘Communism’ Forever Doomed?”

Date: Thursday, November 6

Location: Henry Street Settlement, Harry de Jur Playhouse
466 Grand Street (at Pitt Street)

Time: 7:00pm

With an introduction by Josefina Ayerza.  Seating is on a first come, first served basis, and the event is free.

Alain Badiou heads the International Center for the Study of Contemporary French Philosophy (CIEPFC) at the Ecole Normale Superieure, Paris. For many years a Maoist, he remains a committed
political activist. In addition to several novels, plays, and political essays, he has published a number of major philosophical works, including Being and Event, Theory of the Subject, Manifesto for Philosophy, Gilles Deleuze: The Clamour of Being and Handbook of Inaesthetics. In 2006, Badiou published Logics of Worlds, a
sequel fifteen years in the making to Being and Event. The English translation by Alberto Toscano will become available in November. After the election of Nicolas Sarkozy as the new French president, he wrote De quoi Sarkozy est-il le nom?, a polemical book that sparked much heated debate in France and elsewhere.

Alain Badiou enacts a return to full-blown philosophy, striking as a thunder into the morass of postmodernist sophisms and platitudes. His work aims at the very heart of politically correct radical intellectuals, undermining the foundations of their mode of life!
— Slavoj Zizek

Cyber Scholar Working Group, Nov 13

November 5, 2008

Thursday, November 13, 2008

The Secret Lives of Robots.txt (Joris van Hoboken)
The Ethical Visions of Copyright Law (James Grimmelmann)
Yale University Libraries, Digital Technology, and Copyright (Charles Cronin, Melanie Dulong de Rosnay)

Thursday, November 13, 2008
Yale Law School
Room 129
6:00 ? 8:30 pm, pizza
6:30 ? 8:30 pm, presentations
Open to the public and pizza provided: RSVP to

Full Announcement, abstracts, and bios also here:

ISP home page:

The Secret Lives of Robots.txt: Sanctioning the Use of Robots Exclusion Protocols
Joris van Hoboken

Robots.txt is a simple but successful hack from the nineties that helps to mediate the relationship between websites and search engines. It is widely used but has never obtained an official status. Increasingly, courts, industry groups, and regulatory agencies, however, are seeking to tie legal implications to the use and existence of robots exclusion protocols. In this presentation I will discuss a few recent developments with regard to such legal sanctioning in the U.S. and in Europe and question the possible implications of these developments from the perspective of freedom of expression.

The Ethical Visions of Copyright Law
James Grimmelmann

Copyright law imagines a particular ethical ideal for the relationship between author and audience: mutually-respectful market exchange. Even opponents of expansive copyrights often frame arguments in terms of this ideal and deviations from it: “Don’t sue your customers” is merely the ethical mirror image of “Respect copyrights.” A more radical critique, one sometimes associated with the free software movement, looks at this relationship and sees not mutual respect but instead authors behaving badly. The ambiguity between these two critiques, one internal to copyright’s dominant ethical vision and one attacking the vision itself, explains some of the ambiguities surrounding the Creative Commons project.

Yale University Libraries, Digital Technology, and Copyright
Charles Cronin and Melanie Dulong de Rosnay

Charles will discuss his work toward an online resource designed to provide copyright “best practices” guidance for Yale librarians. The project aims to offer librarians swift analysis of, and advice about, the day-to-day copyright uncertainties of library work and thus help avoid the uncomfortable position librarians often find themselves in of having to make conservative determinations on copyright questions rather than exposing the University to risk of infringement liability.
And in conjunction with Charles Cronin’s presentation, Melanie Dulong de Rosnay will present “Building a Distance Learning Course on Copyright for Librarians: Objectives and Challenges” on the development of the project “Copyright for Librarians – A Distance Learning Course,” from requirements definition to the testing of a prototype, leading to the current review and final drafting phase and future implementation plans.