Thursday, December 27, 2007

New technologies of the self, mobilities and (co-)construction of identity

New technologies of the self, mobilities and (co-)construction of identity
Call for chapters
(Deadline for abstracts: 1.3.2008)



Edited by:

Fred Dervin, Senior Lecturer,
Department of French Studies, University of Turku, Finland
(e-mail: freder@utu.fi)
&
Yasmine Abbas,
Doctor of Design, Harvard, USA
ReD Associates, Denmark
(e-mail: abbas.yasmine@gmail.com)


Overall objectives of the book

The new interpersonal spaces created by web 2.0 and 3.0 technologies seem to correspond to the technologies of the self that Michel Foucault (1988) has addressed in his lectures at the Collège de France at the beginning of the 1980s. These new technologies enable the individual¹s self to emerge publicly and to be worked upon with its "disciples": be they companions in Second Life, readers (for example on a blog) or listeners (Podcasts). With high speed Internet access and increasingly generous capacities of storage (mp3, USB keys, iPhone, portable computers...), the opportunities for staging the self have become unlimited.

The authors will explore aspects of the contributions of these new technologies to the expression and (co-)construction of identitie(s) of mobile individuals (physical and/or digital; short-term (expatriates, businessmen, trainees, exchange students) and long-term (migrants, refugees, exiles); inter-/intra- and/or transnational mobilities). Any of the following issues can be addressed:

- The specificities of (co-)constructions of the self through new technologies. How do they contribute to presenting the self?

- The potential differences between these technologies of the self and more « traditional » ones.

- What is said about the self? How? How is it constructed or staged? With whom? For whom? And why?

- Are there signs of manipulation of the self and identity collages?

- What myths related to identity seem to emerge?

- The position of the (real/fictive) interlocutor(s) and groups (cf. peg-communities, Z. Bauman) in these constructions.

- How is the other constructed?

- What do visitors, readers, spectators or listeners seem to gain in terms of reflections on their own identities?

- Problems in using but also researching the new technologies of the self (ethics, psychological effects, in terms of relationships, interculturality).


Submission procedure

Researchers and practitioners (from linguistics, sociology, anthropology, psychology, education, ITŠ) are invited to submit a proposal (350 words) clearly explaining the mission, concerns of their proposed chapter as well as a short description of the corpus (if they plan on using one), the method of analysis and a basic bibliography by March 1, 2008 to freder@utu.fi & abbas.yasmine@gmail.com. The proposal can be in English or French.

The followings will also be provided with the proposal: Name(s), affiliation, a few lines about the author(s), and a list of major publications.

Authors of accepted proposals will be notified by March 15, 2007.

Full chapters will be expected to be submitted by September 1st, 2008.


cf. http://users.utu.fi/freder/appeltechno.htm

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Virtual Worlds Agency Electric Sheep Lays Off 22

Virtual world technology firm The Electric Sheep Company let go nearly a third of its employees yesterday. The move is part of a restructuring to focus the company on larger monetization efforts in 2008, according to CEO Sibley Verbeck.

As part of the reorganization Electric Sheep laid off 22 employees, scaling back its events staff and cancelling several projects, including the creation of an ad network for use within the Second Life virtual world.

"We feel that the time is not right to place more bets on that currently," said Verbeck of the network. "We felt that large scale advertising to the current Second Life user base by real world companies is not a big opportunity in the short term."

Although Verbeck said his firm has never had more than half its projects based in Second Life, and he still believes in Linden Lab's virtual environment, going forward Electric Sheep aims to expand to other adult virtual worlds such as Icarus and Metaplace, as well as children-oriented virtual environments.

"Marketing by outside brands in Second Life is something that is not seeing as much excitement [as there] was nine months ago, and that's appropriate because the active usage base is not growing rapidly right now in that virtual world," he said. "We're seeing a natural shake out of what projects and applications make sense using virtual worlds as a whole and Second Life in particular."

The company is retaining 54 employees and has agreements with 20 contractors to continue work on projects. Electric Sheep is not in financial difficulty for a startup firm, said Verbeck. The company intends to prioritize larger marketing and technology efforts for its clients in 2008, rather than trying to manage multiple smaller projects. Over the past year, Electric Sheep has landed several large accounts, including an investment from CBS which helped lead to a Second Life crossover event with the CSI: New York television show.

The restructuring didn't surprise or worry executives from other virtual world-oriented firms who said in such a rapidly moving industry it's not unusual to increase staff to tackle projects that are quickly discarded.

"People sometimes make the mistake of thinking that startups hatch fully formed, but the truth is that early stage startups do need to sometimes go through some very tough periods of change," said Greg Verdino, chief strategy officer for Crayon, a marketing consultancy. "Don't count [Electric Sheep] out just yet," he continued, adding, "with the Second Life naysayers in the digital advertising space probably rubbing their hands with glee over a Second Life bubble burst... if change wasn't happening that's when I would be worried."

via clickz.com

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

ECREA conference 08 - CFP Science and Environment Communication Section

ECREA's 2nd EUROPEAN COMMUNICATION CONFERENCE

SCIENCE AND ENVIRONMENT COMMUNICATION SECTION

CALL FOR PAPERS


ECREA's Science and Environment Communication Section welcomes the submission of proposals for papers, posters and panels for ECREA's 2nd European Communication Conference to take place in Barcelona on 25-28 November 2008.


Section overview:

The 21st century faces unprecedented challenges in the environment and science fields. The meanings of issues such as climate change and biotechnology, and the decisions taken in relation to them, are associated with a variety of communication practices. Research on communication can therefore provide a central contribution to current debates about scientific and environmental problems and issues of democracy, citizenship and power.

The Science and Environment Communication section seeks to foster a strong network of research in the wide area of science and environment communication. Science is understood here in broad terms as research that has its roots in the social sciences, humanities or natural sciences, including technology. Environment is also understood broadly as both the natural and the built milieu.

Issues that are categorized as environmental and/or scientific are also political, economic and social, and the section therefore aims to promote an integrated, inter- and trans-disciplinary analysis of communication practices. This opens up new opportunities for research and education, including collaboration with other ECREA sections.


Topics:

Examples of topic areas that can be addressed include - but are far from restricted to - the following:

* Media representations of science and/or the environment

* Political and commercial discourses on science, technology and/or the environment

* The communication of environmental or science-related risks

* The dialogic, interactive communication of research-based knowledge

* The discourse and politics of environmental activism

* The roles of communication in scientific (or environmental) governance, democracy and citizenship

* Public engagement with science and/or with environmental issues

* Constructions of nature, science and technology in popular culture

* Communication and the production of research-based knowledge


The section welcomes work that crosses a range of disciplinary (communication/ media/ cultural studies, science and technology studies, sociology, social psychology) and methodological (quantitative/qualitative/empirical/theoretical) boundaries.

PROPOSAL SUBMISSION DEADLINE: 15th February 2008

Conference website:
http://www.ecrea2008barcelona.org/

On-line forms for submitting proposals:

PAPER PROPOSALS: http://www.ecrea2008barcelona.org/eng/callfor_pa.asp
POSTER PROPOSALS: http://www.ecrea2008barcelona.org/eng/callfor_po.asp
PANEL PROPOSALS: http://www.ecrea2008barcelona.org/eng/callfor_pn.asp

Feel free to circulate this call to colleagues or any other research
networks that may be interested in submitting a proposal.

Austrian Association for American Studies 2008

ALMIGHTY DOLLAR

35th International Annual Conference

Austrian Association for American Studies (AAAS)
http://www.univie.ac.at/Anglistik/aaas/

Velden am Wörthersee
October 24 - 26, 2008



The dollar, Washington Irving wrote in 1837 at the height of a financial panic, is daily becoming more and more an object of worship. This saying is a useful reminder that the national monetary icon has never been simply an economic issue; it has also always been a cultural issue.

We therefore invite proposals for papers that consider peoples engagements with the Almighty Dollar, from the most ordinary, mundane daily practices to the most extra-ordinary, life-changing ones. Since such engagements can be found in literature, the arts, film, and popular culture, the possibility of topics is wide open, so long as they connect to the meanings of and the increasingly thin line between the dollar and the people who make, use, and consume it.

We look forward, then, to proposals from a wide variety of disciplines including, but not limited to, culture studies, literature, history and art history, political science and sociology, economics, communication studies, popular culture studies, folklore, anthropology, gender studies, and race studies. We encourage and wish to present a multiplicity of theoretical frames and methodologies that grapple with questions concerning the cultural work of the national monetary icon. A selection of papers will appear in a conference volume, to be published by LIT-Verlag as part of the American Studies in Austria series.

Please send your 250-300 word proposal and a 100 word biographical statement as a Word document to Eleonore Wildburger at Eleonore.Wildburger@uni-klu.ac.at, by May 1, 2008.

At present, our confirmed keynote speakers are: Eva Boesenberg (American Studies, Humboldt-University, Berlin); Gerda Elisabeth Moser (German Studies, University of Klagenfurt); Marc Shell (Comparative Literature, Harvard University).

The conference, while hosted by Alpen-Adria-Universität Klagenfurt, will meet in Velden am Wörthersee, with the Casineum as the main venue. Velden am Wörthersee is one of Austrias premier relaxation and bathing resorts and famous for architectural marvels such as the Baumgartner Villas in the Wörthersee architecture style, and the renaissance Velden Palace built in 1590. The Palace, the Promenade, and the Casino invariably have been used as film settings. Velden am Wörthersee is located in the southern part of Austria, between Klagenfurt, the capital of the state of Carinthia and home to Alpen-Adria-Universität Klagenfurt, and Villach, a major junction city and the gateway to Europes south and southeast.


Heinz Tschachler, President

Eleonore Wildburger, Secretary

Monday, December 17, 2007

Communications and Space/Place - ICS Postgrad Conference

Communication and Space/ Place

2nd Postgraduate Conference
University of Leeds, Institute of Communications Studies
Leeds, United Kingdom
Friday, 6 June 2008


Following the great success of last year's first PhD conference, the Institute of Communications Studies (ICS) at the University of Leeds will be hosting a second post-graduate conference for research in communications and media. We invite students from all disciplines at the Master's or Doctoral level to present research that pertains to the conceptualisation and/or observation of space/place in relation to communication, media and culture.

Although Space and Place can be understood broadly, the theoretical and material implications of their relationship to media and communications are important to studies in this field. The two words, taken either together or separately, are crucial to all manner of media and communications structures/networks/economies/policies, such as the discursive 'space' of contemporary politics, shifting conceptions of public and private 'places', the focus on flows between locales in a global capitalist economy, the importance of creative 'space' in the
culture industries, the decentralised 'space' of online 'citizen media', and so on. While a look at various definitions of either word reveals at once their potential compatibilities and irreconcilabilities, the linguistic convergence marked by each word's functionality as both verb
and noun presents us with myriad possibilities of thinking Space and Place. Spaces and places may be 'real' or 'virtual' environments and locales; sites of expansion or contraction; material realisations or policies of freedom or restriction. Space/Place can also be understood in terms of
culture and discursive relationships; they can be formations where the identities of groups and individuals are explored and/or constructed, and where notions of human agency encounter forces and ideologies that influence and are influenced by the ways that social actors and
institutions communicate.


The following are some possible areas of inquiry:

The problematic dichotomies of public-private, 'real'-virtual, spaces and places for the use/consumption of media.

Meaning/Representation: The spaces and places in which media and communication are produced and consumed have a profound relationship to how 'meaning' is derived from them. How are people from different cultures, ethnicities, etc. represented by and in media and communications?

What are the policies that shape the relationship of communication, space/place, and 'stakeholders' (public, state, market, NGOs etc) how is space/place regulated? How do space/place relate to prohibition of communication, or the use of various media as propaganda?

The spaces and places in which media and communication are produced and consumed have a profound relationship to how 'meaning' is derived from them. To what extent, and in which ways, are media and communications spaces/places contingent (or not) on aspects of each other and on media producers and consumers?

Are there barriers to participation in certain media/communications spaces/places? How does power operate in these spaces/places? How are new formations of power relationships developed with relation to space/place? How are old formations changing or being reinforced in
contemporary media?

What happens at the edges and intersections of spaces/places, i.e. when traditional media meet the Internet, or when communications cross over between genres and media? Does a place necessarily constitute a space, and vice versa? Are they fluid; are they mutually exclusive?


Please submit an abstract by 21 January 2008 with a general description of your research paper, indicating your topic, theoretical framework, research questions or hypotheses, and methodological considerations. The abstract should not exceed 500 words and should be attached to your email in a common document format (MS Word compatible, Word Perfect).
Should your proposal be accepted, we will ask you to provide a full paper before the conference.

All accepted full papers will be read, discussed and commented on by members of the academic staff from the Institute of Communications Studies who have expertise in your topic, method, or theoretical framework. This can be a golden opportunity for you to refine your thoughts, openly share your concerns, and receive constructive critique from professors and fellow postgraduate students working in your area. It is also a great chance to start building or expanding your
professional and academic network. Following the conference your paper will be published in the forthcoming ICS Postgraduate Conference proceedings open access online journal.

Contact Information:

Email: ics-pg-conference@leeds.ac.uk
Conference Website:
http://www.personal.leeds.ac.uk/~cspaa/ics-pg-conference/

Important Dates:

Abstracts: 21 January 2008
Acceptance Notification: 3 March 2008
Full papers: 30 April 2008

Please indicate the following in the body of your email:

Title of presentation as it appears on the abstract
Name
Affiliaton (program and university)
Level and year of study (ex. Master's, 2nd year)
Phone number
E-mail address
Mailing address
A/V requirements (computer/projector, film projector, VCR/DVD, stereo, etc.)
Other requirements (table, easel, hooks, display materials).
Mobility and other special needs requirements (wheel chair access, etc.)

We look forward to receiving your abstracts, and thank you for your
interest!

-The Organising Committee.

Paramount Gives Away Next Jackass Movie Online

Jackass 2.5 is coming to an Internet screen near you, and it's free. Paramount Pictures, MTV and Blockbuster have partnered to distribute the latest feature length film from the daredevil reality franchise in an ad-supported environment.

From December 19th through the 31st, the film will be distributed by movie rental firm Blockbuster's Movielink service as a streaming video over Microsoft's Silverlight media player. The movie won't be directly available from Blockbuster, but instead will be distributed by the movie's own site at blockbuster.jackassworld.com. As co-sponsor, Blockbuster will manage advertising for initial distribution of the film.

Blockbuster will also sell pre- and post-roll video advertising, and has signed on Clearspring to manage its inventory. Additionally, interactive marketing firm Deep Focus will support the release, according to CEO Ian Schafer.

Distributing a feature length ad-supported film online is new territory for Paramount, according to Alex Carloss, EVP and GM Digital Distribution for the studio.

"It was a wonderful opportunity to take a look at the standard model and see if we could shake it up a bit -- to prove that distribution over the Internet is real," he said.

The original Jackass television show aired on MTV from 2000 to 2001, and consisted of cast members conducting dangerous stunts or playing pranks. Jackass seemed appropriate for online distribution compared to other Paramount and MTV content, the company said, as a majority of its fans are from a younger demographic and accustomed to watching short videos online, said Carloss.

"Jackass was a property that was almost born on the Internet and designed for the Internet, with a demographic that lived and breathed on the Internet" Carloss said.

via clickz.com

Music Industry Pressures EU Politicians for Filtered

The music and film industry continues to pursue its idea of a politically "corrected" Internet - one that they imagine could protect their old business models without requiring any extra costs on their part. This time, the fix is Internet-wide filtering. In a memo to European policy-makers, the International Federation of Phonographic Industries (IFPI) has called upon ISPs in Europe to filter the content sent across their networks, block protocols used by their customers, and cut off access to persistently infringing sites from the Net.

Disturbingly, European politicians seem open to the idea of ISPs policing and interfering with their customers' communications on behalf of rightsholders. Last month, the European Parliament's Committee on Industry, Research and Energy (ITRE) tabled an amendment to a Parliamentary report that changed a request to "rethink the critical issue of intellectual property", into a call for "internet service providers to apply filtering measures to prevent copyright infringements".

EFF sent a letter pointing out that some of the groups hardest hit by blanket Internet filtering measures would be artists and teachers. But building filtering and censorship tools is not just bad for creators and education; it's bad for all of society. Any country that has a centralized system in place to pry into its citizen's private communications creates a very disturbing precedent and a dangerously powerful tool, vulnerable to misuse. Perhaps the music industry's European lobbyists have lost sight of the serious collateral damage their proposals would cause, but European citizens and their elected policymakers should not.

For the full IFPI memo requesting filtering from ISPs:
http://www.eff.org/files/filenode/effeurope/ifpi_filtering_memo.pdf

For EFF Europe's letter addressing calls for ISPs to filter for copyright infringement:
http://www.eff.org/files/filenode/effeurope/CULT-filtering-letter.pdf

For this post:
http://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2007/12/music-industry-europe-filter-pressure

Copyright in Canada: No Longer Business as Usual

It's been a roller-coaster few weeks for digital rights activists in Canada. A few weeks ago, rumors began circulating that the current minority Conservative government was going to present a copyright reform act before the new year. It's long been known that the US government and media companies are pressuring Canada to "normalize" its IP law with its southern neighbor.

The apparent intent of the government to slip the bill through at the very end of the Christmas parliamentary session suggested an administration that believed that importing IP law was a simple enough trade for US approval -- a law that would gather nothing more than a muted protest from those not involved in the backroom negotiations.

The administration could not have been more wrong! Despite the unseasonal timing of the bill's announcement, and with no confirmed text of the bill, Net users in Canada quickly created their own opportunities for public discussion. Spearheaded by Canadian law professor Michael Geist, over 20,000 concerned activists joined and co-ordinated their actions over a Facebook group. Thousands of them sent letters to their MPs through the Canadian grassroots site, Online Rights Canada, co-sponsored by EFF, to urge the government to consider fixing copyright law, not tightening it. And dozens visited the bill's backer, Industry Minister Jim Prentice, in person at his constituency Christmas meal last weekend. They brought food for the charity collection and hard copyright questions for the minister -- and filmed and blogged it all.

The day after, Prentice announced he was not going to introduce the bill on its scheduled date. Days later, sources close to the ministry were dropping hints that it would still be introduced before Christmas, but Prentice's press secretary confirmed that the bill had been delayed until the new year.

Industry Canada's hesitancy is an indication of how radically the political scene around IP has changed in the last few years. Copyright is now a consumer issue, not a set of deals between private industries. And, thanks to the Net, consumers can now learn, react, and protest to what troubles them at a speed that can outrun the usual government messaging tricks.

For Online Rights Canada's copyright news and activism website:
http://www.copyrightforcanadians.ca/

For this complete post by EFF's International Outreach Coordinator Danny O'Brien:
http://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2007/12/copyright-canadians

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Vudu Offers HD Movies Online

Vudu Offers HD Movies Online
In a major shift in movie distribution, a high-definition version of the hit "The Bourne Ultimatum" is being released through Vudu's online service.


This video won't play in feed readers, please come to the site to watch the Associated Press news report.

LinkedIn Stays Relevant

LinkedIn Stays Relevant
Business social networking site LinkedIn was one of the first out of the box. CEO Dan Nye talks with Stacey Delo about new features and how the social networking site plans to stay relevant.
This video of "In the Valley" won't play in feed readers, please visit the site to see this report from the Wall Street Journal.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Intended to Provoke: Social Action in Visual Culture[s]

Call For Papers: “Intended to Provoke: Social Action in Visual Culture[s]”
The Fifth Annual Visual Cultures Symposium at George Mason University
March 27, 2008


What happens when art is made as an intentionally political act?

This symposium addresses the use of art as a form of social action -resistance - intervention - opposition. We seek to interrogate the ways in which shifts in our understanding of what constitutes "art" are intertwined with social conditions and our will to change them.

Academic or creative work from scholars, students, artists and activists is encouraged. We construe the term “art” broadly, in all of its contemporary meanings: from fine art in galleries and museums to street performance and graffiti to mass media images.

“Intended to Provoke” will be the fifth annual visual culture symposium at George Mason University. Following in the tradition of the preceding symposia, “Intended to Provoke” will be an interdisciplinary, multimedia inquiry into issues relevant to the theme, and to visual culture in general, from multiple perspectives to include faculty, graduate and undergraduate work.

In past years our co-sponsors have included a diverse group of departments and programs at the University, including programs in Cultural Studies, Film and Media Studies and Honors, and the Departments of Art and Visual Technology, English, Art History and History, Sociology and Anthropology, Philosophy, New Century College, and Women’s Studies.

As in previous years, the symposium will be presented concurrently with a juried exhibition of work created in relation to a parallel theme. For more information, please download the call for submissions at http://beauty.gmu.edu/visualcultures/

Abstracts of no more than 300 words are due January 10, 2008, and should be submitted to elgorman@msn.com. All paper presentations will be no longer than 15 minutes, including accompanying visual images, and each panel will conclude with questions from and dialogue with the audience.

Possible Panel ideas/themes include, but are not limited to:

- Tactical/Digital Media

- Performance Art: Infiltrating the Public

- Graffiti: Art and Illegality

- Art for Art’s Sake: How Changing the Art World Makes a Social Statement

- Political Images: Art in the Campaign

- Music Videos as a Space for Promoting Change

- Contestation: Immigration/Globalization Visualized

- Community-based Art

- Visual Culture and the Politics of Gender

- EcoArt


Lynne Constantine
Associate Chair, Art and Visual Technology
Assistant Professor, Art and Visual Technology
Doctoral Candidate, Cultural Studies
George Mason University
lconstan@gmu.edu

Ellen Gorman
Doctoral Student, Cultural Studies, George Mason University
Lecturer, Georgetown University and Corcoran College of Art + Design
elgorman@msn.com

Tracy McLoone
Doctoral Candidate, Cultural Studies
Instructor, New Century College and Honors Program
George Mason University
tmcloone@gmu.edu

2nd Workshop on Social Aspects of the Web (SAW 2008)

CALL FOR PAPERS:
2nd Workshop on Social Aspects of the Web (SAW 2008)
in conjunction with
11th International Conference on Business Information Systems (BIS 2008)
Innsbruck, Austria
May 5, 6 or 7, 2008
Deadline for submissions: January 12, 2008

http://bis.kie.ae.poznan.pl/11th_bis/wscfp.php?ws=saw2008



In recent years, the Web has moved from a simple one-way communication channel extending traditional media, to a complex "peer-to-peer" communication space with a blurred author/audience distinction and new ways to create, share and use knowledge in a social way. This change of paradigm is currently profoundly transforming most areas of our life: our interactions with other people, our relationships, ways of gathering information, ways of developing social norms, opinions, attitudes and even legal aspects as well as ways of working and doing business.

It also raises a strong need for theoretical, empirical and applied studies related to how people may interact on the Web, how they actually do so and what new possibilities and challenges are emerging in the social, business and technology dimensions.

The goal of this workshop is to bring researchers and practitioners together to explore the issues and challenges related to social aspects of the Web. We want to facilitate discussion on topics including theoretical, empirical and applied studies related to:


TOPICS OF INTEREST

* Users in the social Web
* User identity/identities on the Web
* Activity patterns
* Privacy / intimacy in the social Web
* Psychological aspects of acting in the social Web
* Analysis and reduction of the socio-technical gap in social software

* Communities on the Web
* User roles, leadership and interactions
* Conflicts and their resolution
* Social norms and their enforcement
* Trust and reputation in communities
* Relations of on-line and off-line communities
* Social discourse and decision-taking on the Web

* Large-scale social Web mining and empirical studies
* Social network analysis
* Associations mining from social network
* Large-scale behaviour patterns and anomalies' mining
* Moods' / opinions' / social problems' analysis
* Experts finding on the social Web
* Mining formal semantics from social sources
* Methodologies of Web-based social macro and micro studies

* Social Web and business
* Social Web as a source of business information
* Social Web as a business communication channel
* Business models for social software and services
* Specific types of social software on the Web (bookmarking, social networks etc.)
* Use cases and best practices

* Applications of Web-based social software
* Social software architectures
* Social software on the Semantic Web
* Strategies for bootstrapping social software systems and bypassing
the critical mass problem
* Social software in information processing and retrieval
* Social software in collaborative maintenance of content and data


SUBMISSION

* Long papers: max. 5000 words
* Work-in-progress rep.: max. 2500 words
* Position papers: max. 2500 words
* Demo papers: max. 2500 words


Papers must be submitted in PDF format according to Springer LNBIP template available from
http://www.springer.com/east/home/computer/lncs?SGWID=5-164-7-487211-0.

Submission system is available on-line at
http://www.easychair.org/conferences/?conf=SAW2008.

The proceedings will be published jointly with proceedings of other BIS workshops as a book or CD with ISBN number, and on-line at CEUR WS.org workshop proceedings publication service (open content). Extended version of selected papers submitted to the workshop will be published as special issue of International Journal on WWW/Internet (http://www.iadis.org/ijwi/, ISSN: 1645-7641).


WORKSHOP FORMAT

All authors of accepted papers as well as other participants will be asked to read accepted papers abstracts before the workshop (papers will be available on-line in advance) to facilitate discussion. The workshop will consist in two parts: first (more formal) devoted to presentation and discussion of accepted papers and second (less formal) devoted to discussion of several issues related to present and future of the social Web.

Workshop participants will be also invited to take part in the BIS conference and topically related BIS workshops on Mashups, Enterprise Mashups, and Lightweight Composition on the Web (M&LCW 2008) and Advances in Accessing the Deep Web (ADW 2008).


IMPORTANT DATES

* January 12, 2008 - submission deadline for papers
* February 12, 2008 - notification of acceptance/rejection
* March 12, 2008 - submission of final papers
* May 5, 6 or 7, 2008 - the workshop


ORGANIZERS

* Poznan University of Economics, Department of Information Systems
(http://kie.ae.poznan.pl/)


CHAIRS

* Dominik Flejter
* Tomasz Kaczmarek
* Marek Kowalkiewicz


PROGRAM COMMITTEE

* Krisztian Balog, University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands
* Simone Braun, FZI Karlsruhe, Germany
* John Breslin, DERI, NUI Galway, Ireland
* Tanguy Coenen, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium
* Jon Dron, Athabasca University, Canada
* Davide Eynard, Politecnico di Milano, Italy
* Andrew T. Fiore, University of California, Berkeley, the USA
* Dominik Flejter, Poznan University of Economics, Poland
* Tomasz Kaczmarek, Poznan University of Economics, Poland
* Marek Kowalkiewicz, SAP Research Brisbane, Australia
* Sebastian Kruk, DERI, NUI Galway, Ireland
* Marcin Paprzycki, Polish Academy of Science, Poland
* Katharina Siorpaes, STI, University of Innsbruck, Austria
* Marcin Sydow, Polish-Japanese Institute of Information Technology, Poland
* Jie Tang, Tshingua University, China
* Celine van Damme, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium
* Valentin Zacharias, FZI Karlsruhe, Germany

Computer Games, Law, Regulation and Policy Symposium

Computer Games, Law, Regulation and Policy Symposium

14-15 February 2008
QUT, Creative Industries Precinct, Brisbane

The ARC Centre of Excellence for Creative Industries and Innovation presents a symposium to explore:

* struggles over the use and reuse of IP

* rights and responsibilities of modders and machinima creators

* jurisdictional issues

* the clashes between developers and lawyers in creating terms of access

* the legitimacy or legality of terms in End User Licence


Agreements and Terms Of Service

* the legitimacy of secondary markets

* the status of ephemeral and user-created content with classification boards and internet regulators

* in-game governance and exclusion policies

* privacy, data mining and surveillance

* appropriate government support for the emerging games industry


This symposium will offer a chance to discuss the issues of game governance, from code through to government policy, and to explore an integrated set of solutions to the current problems. Bringing together people from creative industries, media studies, law, business and IT faculties, industry, government and player groups, the emphasis will be on exploring and suggesting alternatives to current practices.


Speakers include:

Fred von Lohmann, Senior Intellectual Property Attorney, Electronic Frontier Foundation

Dr Terry Cutler, President ACMI, Industry consultant and strategy advisor

Professor Brian Fitzgerald, QUT Law School, Lead in Creative Commons Australia

Professor Stuart Cunningham, Director Centre of Excellence for Creative Industries and Innovation

Dr Sal Humphreys, Convenor, Games and Law Research Group, QUT

Dr John Banks, Post-Doctoral Fellow, Games researcher, QUT

Industry representatives, Government Representatives, Player representatives

To register: email symposium convener Dr Sal Humphreys: s.humphreys@qut.edu.au
For more information visit the symposium website at http://www.cci.edu.au/programs/gamesandlaw

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Darknet Assumptions Still True

In a recent blog post, Princeton professor and EFF Board Member Ed Felten reminds us that one of the core "Darknet premises" -- that DRM systems on mass media content will
inevitably be broken -- continues to prove itself true. The victim this year is AACS, the encryption scheme used to prevent the copying of HD-DVD and Blu-ray discs. Despite the best efforts of the entertainment industry to change encryption keys and otherwise lock down content, AACS is broken time and time again.

To many who follow DRM issues closely, this is hardly news; the regular breaking of DRM systems, followed by the steady leak of formerly-protected content into file-sharing channels, is now so common that it barely rates a mention in the tech press.

But copyright policy-makers still haven't gotten the message that DRM does not slow piracy. Whether they get the message or not, this steadily mounting pile of empirical evidence continues to show that the anti-circumvention provisions of the DMCA (i.e., "thou shalt not circumvent DRM") are a failure if the goal was to impede digital infringement. At the same time, of course, the DMCA continues to be a valuable tool for rightsholders who want to use DRM to impede competition, innovation, and free speech.

For Professor Ed Felten's post:
http://www.freedom-to-tinker.com/?p=1229

For the full post by EFF Senior Staff Attorney Fred von Lohmann:
http://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2007/11/year-end-2007-darknet-assumptions-still-true

Between Friends: The Perils of Centralized Blogging

One of the paradoxes of current social software is how many of your closely-guarded secrets you are obliged to entrust to a third party. The news that LiveJournal has been sold
to SUP, a Moscow-based company, is the latest vivid indication of this danger. Now, LiveJournal journal entries are under the control of not only a young new company, but a new jurisdiction: Russia. What does that mean for the privacy of LiveJournal posts and the free expression of
LiveJournal users?

Countries like Russia have weaker protections over privacy and free speech, both legally and culturally, than many users might have come to expect. Legal considerations aside, LiveJournal may come under far more intense pressure to turn over user information or remove content when run from Moscow than from the United States. The site is very popular among Russian-speakers and is used by opposition politicians there as much as by enthusiastic fan-fiction
authors. The political status of free expression in Russia is on shakier ground, with journalists, online and off, assaulted and threatened by the authorities.

LiveJournallers, already disturbed by previous acts of control by Six Apart in the U.S., could well find themselves caught up in far nastier fights over the public and private content held by SUP's servers. That's of particular concern for Russian users, or the many Russian-speaking LJers in the former-Soviet republics that surround Russia, who do not necessarily trust the political or business culture of Moscow. Fortunately for those concerned by the implications, LiveJournal's legacy in the world of open source and open standards means that
extracting data from the service is not as painful as it might otherwise be.

But for now, the most important lesson for Americans and Russians alike is to be cautious about with whom and where you share your secrets. The Internet has given us the opportunity to make our own data public and secure; hopefully the next generation of social software will give
us the tools to use these capabilities for ourselves, rather than entrust the responsibility to others.

For the full post by EFF International Outreach Coordinator Danny O'Brien:
http://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2007/12/between-friends

Facebook love: its complicated

The current generation has replaced varsity jackets and class rings with links on social networking sites like Facebook.
this video won't play on RSS readers, please visit the site to watch the video, or even embed it on your own site using the 'embed' button.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

7 Ways to Say Internet With Netart

JavaMuseum - Forum for Internet Technology in Contemporary Art
http://www.javamuseum.org

released recently the netart feature

"Seven Ways To Say Internet with Net Art" -
curated by Elena Giulia Rossi


http://www.javamuseum.org/2007/index1.html
including works by
Juliet Davis
Reinhald Drouhin
Free Soil (Amy Franceschini, Myriel Milicevic, Nis Rømer)
Molleindustria
Santiago Ortiz
C.J.Yeh
Lorenzo Pizzanelli


Curatorial statement

Seven Ways To Say Internet with Net Art
Elena Giulia Rossi


Since its inception, net art has always been referring to its own medium. The seven works selected, created in different times, address different facets of the nature of Internet, from the social perception of the self and of the body in relation to technology, to the potential impact that this medium can have on society, mostly when art is concerned.

The relationship between nature art and representation of the self with the flow of information is synthesized in the hybrid portrait of "Deus Fleurs" by the French artist Reynald Drouhin.

Generative processes as art are the core of C.J. Yeh's "Equal" where personal data generate modernist-like paintings. Sound and space in relation to dynamics and energy are the subject of Santiago Ortiz's "Sound and Energy" where Internet is treated as a canvas for dynamic and interactive sketches.

Molleindustria's works, a collective engaged in the creation of original games aimed to rise political concerns are excellent examples of how games, and Internet as a vehicle to foster them, can ease issues otherwise difficult to face.

"Mc Donald's Videogame" is a courageous critique of the McDonald's brand and of the functioning of its corporation, at the origin of remarkable ecological damages. It is through the game that Juliet Davis explores in "Pieces of Herself" feminine embodiment and its relation to real and virtual space. A game is also involved in Iconoclast Game by Lorenzo Pizzanelli: through irony and play the author gives a critical view of the power of images and of the museums that make them sacred.

F.R.U.I.T., engaged in the shaping of an on-line community to encourage cultivation within urban areas, is a project where the network activity is art. It makes clear that net art is "action" and it is closer to performing than any other art practice.


About the curator
Elena Giulia Rossi works and lives in Rome/Italy as an independent curator. Since 2002, she has been collaborating with MAXXI - National Museum of 21st Century Art Rome/Italy, where she is curating since 2005 a section dedicated to net/web art. She regularly writes for the on-line edition of the Italian newspaper "L'Unità".
Detailed bio on http://and.nmartproject.net/?p=1394

Detailed artists biographies
Juliet Davis (USA) -
http://www.nmartproject.net/artists/?p=1401

Reinhald Drouhin (France) -
http://www.nmartproject.net/artists/?p=1402

Free Soil (Amy Franceschini, Myriel Milicevic, Nis Rømer)
http://www.nmartproject.net/artists/?p=1403

Molleindustria (Italy) -
http://www.nmartproject.net/artists/?p=1404

Santiago Ortiz (Colombia) -
http://www.nmartproject.net/artists/?p=1405

C.J.Yeh (Taiwan) -
http://www.nmartproject.net/artists/?p=1406

Lorenzo Pizzanelli (Italy) -
http://www.nmartproject.net/artists/?p=1407



The netart feature -
"Seven Ways To Say Internet with Net Art" -
http://www.javamuseum.org/2007/index1.html
represents also the JavaMuseum contribution to NewMediaFest2007
http://2007.newmediafest.org
http://www.newmediafest.org/blog/
and can be accessed via the festival interface.


JavaMuseum - Forum for Internet Technology in Contemporary Art
http://www.javamuseum.org
is a corporate part of
[NewMediaArtProjectNetwork]:cologne
http://www.nmartproject.net

info (at) javamuseum.org

LiveJournal bought by Russian firm SUP

Six Apart Announces New Home for LiveJournal
Acquisition of LiveJournal, creation of new operating company and investment fund by SUP promise new innovation and expansion for pioneering online community



Six Apart, the world's leading independent blogging software and services company, today announced that SUP, an international media company, has acquired LiveJournal (LJ), the pioneer of social networking communities online used by millions of people around the world to connect through personal journals and topic-based communities. SUP has launched an American company, LiveJournal, Inc., to manage and operate LiveJournal globally.

This agreement builds on the established and successful relationship between Six Apart and SUP, which entered into a licensing agreement in October 2006 permitting SUP to manage LiveJournal in Russia. The Russian LiveJournal community is second only to the U.S. in number of accounts, and has been influential enough in that country to make "LiveJournal" synonymous with "blogging" in Russian.

"We have a tremendous respect for the LiveJournal community, and are pleased to see that LiveJournal, Inc. will continue to build on LiveJournal's rich user experience. We have been impressed by the expertise and enthusiasm that SUP has brought to LiveJournal in Russia. They've introduced new features, nearly doubled the number of users, invested in key product enhancements, and have done justice to one of the most innovative online social networks in the world. Judging both by SUP's track record and their eagerness to create a new user advisory board to oversee the community's interests, this is clearly a good fit," stated Chris Alden, CEO and Chairman of Six Apart.

"Having gotten to know LiveJournal in Russia over the past year, we see enormous potential in developing the business worldwide; it has already shown its durability in America. We believe this is a great opportunity," said Andrew Paulson, CEO of SUP.

Six Apart acquired LiveJournal in January 2005 from its founder, Brad Fitzpatrick. From its founding, LiveJournal popularized many of the fundamental innovations of social media, such as friends lists and powerful privacy controls. Under Six Apart, the number of LiveJournal accounts nearly tripled from 5 million to over 14 million, and dozens of new features were introduced to the site, including

- a powerful email/IM/web notification system;
- LJTalk, a completely open-source Jabber-based instant messaging platform;
- user-to-user messaging and tremendous improvements in comment management and editing;
- a vastly expanded mobile feature set, including a dedicated mobile client; and
dozens of new visual themes and a completely new, simplified site design and navigation system.

Six Apart will continue its active investment in and promotion of the signature open source platform technologies created by the LiveJournal team, such as Memcached, Mogile, Perlbal, and OpenID, all of which have been adopted by other leading web properties from Craigslist to Facebook to Wikipedia. LiveJournal, Inc. will also carry on LiveJournal's strong open source tradition.

Six Apart will also continue to represent LiveJournal to advertisers and sponsors for at least the coming twelve months.

"While we'll miss being LiveJournal's home, this is a great milestone for LiveJournal and also lets us to focus on the core products invented at Six Apart: Movable Type, TypePad, and Vox," said Alden. "We are investing heavily in the products and have substantial growth plans for 2008."

via

Annual MeCCSA Postgraduate Conference - Call for Papers

ANNUAL MECCSA POSTGRADUATE CONFERENCE
CALL FOR PAPERS


The MeCCSA (Media, Communications and Cultural Studies Association) Postgraduate Network invites submission of abstracts for its Annual Postgraduate Conference to be held:

1st - 3rd July 2008 at the University of Sussex, Brighton

This interdisciplinary conference welcomes papers on topics relevant to any area of media, communication, and cultural studies, including media practice and pedagogy.

The conference is organised by postgraduates and it is designed for Masters and PhD students, as well as early postdoctoral researchers.

This is an excellent opportunity for postgraduate students to present their work to
likeminded individuals in a supportive and productive environment. The conference will also include keynotes and workshops from expert academics on topics pertinent to postgraduate students, including publishing, teaching practices and transitions between MA / PhD /work.

Please send abstracts (between 150 and 250 words) for proposed 20-minute papers by 1st February 2008 to meccsasussex@yahoo.co.uk. The abstracts should include:

A. Your name, contact details and institutional affiliation;
B. Title and topic of research, including method(s) used;
C. Up to five key words, which will help the reviewers classify your proposal;
D. Technical requirements for the presentation.

Notification of acceptance will be sent out by the end of April 2008.
For more information, including details of keynote speakers, venues and conference fees, visit:
MeCCSA-PGN: http://www.meccsa.org.uk/pgn/
University of Sussex: http://www.sussex.ac.uk

Net Tops TV for Young UK Consumers

Weekly online time for 16- to-25-year-olds in the United Kingdom averages 19.3 hours, compared to 13.5 hours watching television, according to Headbox's "Tech Tribe" report, as reported by New Media Age.

Headbox also found that one-quarter of respondents said they spent more than four hours per day online.

More than one in 10 respondent said they created and uploaded content, and 8% said they wrote blogs.

Nearly one in five said they would be willing to 'make friends' with brands on social networks.
Headbox interviewed 2,800 16- to-25-year-olds in the United Kingdom.

Online Video Site Traffic Shuffle

The top five online video sites shuffled their ranking order and site traffic in October, according to Compete.

YouTube was still tops, growing 1% in October to 213 million visits on nearly 52 million unique visitors. MSN/Live Video also grew, up more than one-quarter to 35 million visits by 21 million unique visitors.

Traffic to Yahoo! Video, MySpaceTV and Heavy.com all fell. MySpace's online video market share has fallen by one-half since July, to 7.6%.

Unique visitors to Yahoo! Video remained about the same, while visits fell 27.5%. Compete said that the drop showed that visitors to Yahoo! Video were less inclined to return than they were in September and August.

Similarly, AOL's video sections had a 4% increase in unique visitors, but visits actually fell by 9.4% to 30 million.

Compete said that traffic to the top 20 video sites fell by 6% in October.

Europe Paves the Way for Global Web Ad Spending Growth - Dec 5, 2007

Online ad spending growth in Western Europe is poised to be far more accelerated than in the U.S., and substantial growth also is expected in Russia.

Forecasts released by ZenithOptimedia earlier this week suggest Internet ad spend growth over the next three years will be spearheaded by European activity.
The report predicts by 2010, Internet ad spending in North America will have reached a figure in excess of $24 billion. That represents an increase of more than 40 percent from 2007's $17 billion spend.

In Western Europe however, the Web ad growth is poised to be far more accelerated. Spending is forecast to increase by around 95 percent, leaping from just under $10 billion in 2007 to almost $20 billion by 2010. This European growth will be driven largely by the U.K. market, which will account for $8 billion of the region's expected $19.5 billion spend.

Anne Austin, Senior Publications Executive at ZenithOptimedia cited Internet penetration as a possible reason for this rapid growth. "There is more scope for increasing penetration in Europe than in America over the next few years," stated Austin. "This will attract more advertising as the potential audience grows."

According to internetworldstats.com, at of the end of September 2007, EU countries had a total Internet penetration of around 54 percent, compared with about 70 percent in North America.

The regions with by far the largest expected online advertising revenue growth as the decade comes to a close are Central and Eastern Europe. Although relatively modest in dollar terms, Zenith predicts spending will exceed $1.5 billion by 2010, representing an increase of more than 170 percent over 2007's $573 million.

This substantial growth is expected to be driven largely by a booming Russian market. Russia alone is expected to see around $728 million spent on online advertising in 2010, accounting for almost half of the projected Web ad revenues for the region.

"The explosion in Internet ad spend in Central and Eastern Europe is reflective of especially rapid growth in the wider advertising markets there," said Austin. "What we are seeing is a large number of relatively young markets booming off a comparatively low base."

Alex Marks, head of U.K. marketing for Microsoft Digital Advertising Solutions supported this view, noting, the figures "basically reflect the maturity of the online ad market in these regions." He added, "The base figure from which the growth is predicted is of course highly relevant. One hundred seventy-three percent growth of a small amount is not as significant an indicator of health as 43 percent or 95 percent growth in established markets."

Still, Western European ad spending is set to account for a greater share of overall spending than in the U.S. According to the ZenithOptimedia numbers, in 2007 online represented 9.3 percent of the total Western European spend, and 9.1 percent of the North American spend. By 2010, the company predicts online will command a greater portion of advertising budgets in Western Europe than it does North America, accounting for 15.7 percent compared to 11.8 percent of total media ad spend, respectively.

Austin suggested the boom in online advertising in Western Europe could potentially be explained by regulation, or rather a lack of it.

"Advertisers in Western Europe really do seem to have taken to online advertising in a big way, and it may be that it is not yet as heavily regulated in other media." She continued, "For example, there was some evidence that a considerable proportion of 'junk food' ad budgets switched from TV to online in the U.K. when the government introduced its ban on TV advertising of 'junk food' to under-16s."

via clickz.com

Google's Armstrong Outlines Five-Year Plan for Offline Ad Sales

TV, print and radio are bigger businesses with more history behind them than the Web, and hence tougher nuts to crack, Tim Armstrong told an audience of investors.

Google's race to sell ads in traditional media is shaping up to be more of a marathon than a sprint, according to sales chief Tim Armstrong.

During comments made to an audience of investors yesterday, Armstrong said scaling up the company's brokerage in TV, radio and print ad inventory may take up to twice as long as growing its core search and contextual ad products did. That's because those offline channels are simply larger and more lumbering than the Web.

"This is a two-, three-, five-year product we're going to work on," he said at UBS's Global Media & Communications Conference in New York yesterday. "Search really took us two-and-a-half years to get up and running on a large level. These may take us a little longer, because they're bigger businesses with more history behind them."

Commenting on each offline channel in turn, Armstrong claimed Google had done a "very good job getting inventory" in print and "had been doing a better job" doing so in radio. He had more to say about the company's more recent incursion into television, where its only distribution is through a relationship with EchoStar.

"The set-top box... is a digitally connected device," he said. "With second-by-second ratings... testing and doing better pieces of creative can lead to efficiencies in terms of how ads perform. That feels very familiar to us at Google."

He reiterated the sweet spots for Google are niche networks and obscure programming blocks rather than the major nets and primetime slots. "If you're a major network you're probably doing OK right now," he said. "There are smaller networks and deeper programming [where] you see a big variance in CPMs."

"One thing we hope Google or other companies will do in the TV space is allow advertisers to see the value in different levels of programming," he added.

In the print and radio arena, Armstrong offered the example of a national manufacturer that had tested different creative executions in different markets, saying the client had successfully measured the impact of those ads at the store level.

Armstrong separately hinted the company might further open its clients' AdWords campaigns to third-party ad trafficking and measurement tools, thus allowing marketers to better measure their Google campaigns. The ability to integrate with such systems has been an area of concern for many advertising clients and was one of the less-acknowledged motivations for the pending DoubleClick acquisition.

Armstrong said the company would execute "more and more partnerships in that space."

via clickz.com

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Bridges to Utopia: 9th Intl Conference of the Utopian Studies Society

“Bridges to Utopia”
9th International Conference of the Utopian Studies Society

University of Limerick, Ireland, 3-5 July 2008


The 9th International Conference of the Utopian Studies Society will be held at the University of Limerick on 3-5 July 2008. The conference will begin at 2:30 pm on 3 July and end at 4:30 pm on 5 July.

With the theme of “Bridges to Utopia,” the conference will examine a range of topics related to utopia and utopianism, in its historical articulation and contemporary realisation. Keynote speakers are Joe Cleary (National University of Ireland, Maynooth), Bernard Gendron (University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee), Peadar Kirby (University of Limerick), and Nicole Pohl (Oxford Brookes University).


Call for Papers
Proposals are invited for papers and panels on any aspect of the utopian tradition – from the earliest utopian visions to the utopian speculations of the 21st century, including art, architecture, urban and rural planning, literary utopias, dystopian writing, political activism, theories of utopia, theories of utopian spaces and ontologies, music, new media, and intentional communities, historical and contemporary.

Papers are especially welcomed on the conference theme of “Bridges to Utopia” or on the plenary themes:
Irish Utopias, Utopia and Music, and Utopia and the Built Environment

Proposals should be for individual papers of 20 minutes, which if accepted will be grouped with others of relevant interest as far as practicality allows, or for panels or strands of panels with 3 papers each.

The conference language is English. Proposals for a panel of 3 papers in another European language, with all presenters registered for the conference and with a designated chair, are welcome. These sessions will take place in the nominated language. Abstracts should be submitted in the original language and English.

Proposal Abstracts
Abstracts of 100 - 250 words should be submitted by e-mail as a file attachment in Word (only) to ralahine@ul.ie by 28 February 2008. Our aim is to be inclusive.

Abstracts should include (in this order): name and affiliation, e-mail address, title of paper, abstract, plus 3 keywords (if possible on one side of A4 in a typeface no smaller than 10). With your abstract, please indicate the following: scheduling restrictions or other special needs for your presentation; audiovisual needs; need for written letter of acceptance (or indicate if an email acceptance is sufficient).

Abstracts are refereed by the conference committee (Dr Joachim Fischer, Dr Michael J. Griffin, Dr Michael G. Kelly, Dr Carmen Kuhling, Prof Tom Moylan, Dr Briona NicDhiarmada,).

Responses, along with registration and accommodation forms, will be returned no later than 28 March 2008.

Registration
Registration fee is €150. This includes coffee and tea, three lunches, and two evening buffet meals, but not accommodation. Payment will be by credit card.

€15 of the registration fee is allocated to the Utopian Studies Society to assist postgraduate/ graduate students with conference expenses. If you are a postgraduate whose paper is accepted and wish to apply for a subsidy, please contact USS Secretary, Lorna.Davidson@newlanark.org.

Deadline for registration at standard fee: 23 May 2008. (Late registration at additional cost of €50.)

Further inquiries:
Inquiries on academic, logistical, and other practical matters should be made to ralahine@ul.ie.

Venue
The University of Limerick is a young and vibrant university with a strong commitment to interdisciplinary studies. The Arts, Humanities, and Social Science Faculty is the largest in the university. The campus is beautifully situated on the banks of the river Shannon just outside the city of Limerick in Castletroy.
See: http://www.ul.ie. See also: http://www.discoverireland.ie.

Schedule
The Conference will open at 2:30 pm on Thursday, 3 July, with registration beginning at 11:00 am. The conference will close at 4:30 pm on Saturday, 5 July. The AGM will be the last event on the programme, running from 3:30 pm to 4:30 pm on Saturday. A detailed programme will be available in May 2008.
A pre-conference field trip is currently being arranged for Wednesday, 2 July. Details and costs (additional to conference costs) will be announced later.

Transport
Buses and taxies link Shannon airport and the Limerick city train and bus station to the university and to conference accommodation. From Shannon airport, bus tickets cost €5.90 and taxis cost on average €50. Car rentals are also available from Shannon. Limerick can also be reached via Dublin airport (and then by bus or train to Limerick city) or Cork airport (and then by bus or train to Limerick city).

Accommodation
En-suite rooms (bed and breakfast, at €55 per night, per person) on campus are reserved for conference delegates in modern student residences, a short walk from the conference venues. Rooms are also set aside under “Utopian Studies Conference” at the Castletroy Park Hotel (b&b, at €115 single; €140 double) and nder “University of Limerick” at the Kilmurray Lodge Hotel (b&b at €70 singel; €95 double), both within walking distance. Additional b&b accommodation is also within walking distance. Limerick city has hotels in all price ranges, but a bus or taxi to the university is necessary.

Full accommodation and booking information will be sent upon the acceptance of a delegate’s paper.


The Utopian Studies Society
The Utopian Studies Society is an interdisciplinary society that aims to co-ordinate and encourage the diverse work currently taking place on the subject of utopianism. Members include people researching literature, philosophy, sociology, history, architecture, politics and anthropology. The Society was established in 1988 by a group of British scholars, following an international conference on utopianism at New Lanark and was expanded into a European-wide organisation in 2000.
See: http://www.utopianstudieseurope.org.

Ralahine Centre for Utopian Studies
The Ralahine Centre for Utopian Studies was established in 2003 as an inter-disciplinary research centre based the College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences.
See: http://www.ul.ie/ralahinecentre/introduction.html.

The Centre is named after the Ralahine Commune, an Owenite co-operative society that was in operation between 1831 and 1833 on the estate of John Vandeleur in Newmarket-on-Fergus in nearby County Clare.
See: http://www.clarelibrary.ie/eolas/coclare/history/ralahine.htm.

The Centre pursues and fosters research on utopian thought and practice. The research carried out by the faculty and postgraduate members of the Centre identifies and studies utopian visions articulated through texts (literary, legal, political, theological, filmic, visual, musical, architectural, and others) and social experiences (such as religious and secular intentional communities, political movements, and cultural practices). While the Centre encourages research in all aspects of utopianism, it has a particular commitment to the study of utopianism in Irish culture.

LEA New Media Subversion - Call for papers

LEA New Media Subversion - Call for papers
Editors: Davin Heckman and Hai Ren


The Leonardo Electronic Almanac (ISSN No: 1071-4391) is inviting papers and artworks that address aspects of “Subversion” in the era of New Media.

In A Brief History of Neoliberalism, David Harvey defines “Neoliberalism” as the idea that “the social good will be maximized” by “bring[ing] all human action into the domain of the market” (3). Harvey continues, explaining that neoliberalism “requires technologies of information creation and capacities to accumulate, store, transfer, analyse, and use massive databases to guide decisions in the global marketplace” (3). In other words, new models of liberty are tied to new technologies and new economic practices.

The avant-garde tradition in the arts, on the other hand, prides itself in its ability to resist, critique, and subvert the dominant order. Art’s most tepid manifestations provide flights of fancy, its most radical manifestations call for revolution.

But in the age of Neoliberalism, what restrictions does art aim to subvert? What liberty does it hope to achieve? What strategies and tactics might it employ in pursuit of its goals?

This special issue of LEA aims to explore opportunities for and obstacles to subversion in the age of New Media.

Topics of interest might include (but are not limited to):
Posthumanism
Governmentality
Neoliberalism
The Political Lifestyle and Interactivity
Consumer Culture and Web 2.0
Fictitious Capital/Immaterial Labour
Normative Subversion
Data Mining and Predictive Modeling
Artificial Intelligence


For the latest news, updates and discussions, join the LEA New Media Subversion Mailing List.

Subscribe to LEA New Media SubversionVisit this group: http://groups.google.com/group/leanewmediasubversion

Publishing Opportunities
As part of this special, LEA is looking to publish:

- Critical Essays

- Artist Statement/works in the LEA Gallery

- Bibliographies (a peer reviewed bibliography with key texts/references in New Media Subversion)

- Academic Curriculum (LEA encourages academics conducting course programmes in this area to contact us)

LEA encourages international artists / academics / researchers / students / practitioners / theorists to submit their proposals for consideration.
We particularly encourage authors outside North America and Europe to submit essays / artists statements.

Proposals should include:

- A brief description of proposed text (200-300 words)
- A brief author biography
- Any related URLs
- Contact details

In the subject heading of the email message, please use *Name of Artist/Project Title: LEA New Media Subversion - Date Submitted.* Please cut and paste all text into body of email (without attachments).

Editorial Guidelines: http://leoalmanac.org/cfp/submit/index.asp
Deadline: January 25, 2008

Please send proposals or queries to:

Davin Heckman
leanewmediasubversion@gmail.com
or
Nisar Keshvani
LEA Editor-in-Chief
lea@mitpress.mit.edu

Cine-Excess II - Call for Papers

Cine-Excess was created by the Cult Film Archive at Brunel University to promote the launch of the world's first MA in Cult Film and TV at Brunel. 'Cult' is a contemporary media buzz-word and cult status has become something that many filmmakers aspire to.

The Cine-Excess philosophy aims to bring together the people with the power to elevate a film to cultdom. International Filmmakers, distributors and marketing executives will confront academics and critics at this unique annual event, which will feature both academic papers and roundtable discussions by key film industry figures. Delegates will also get the chance to watch the UK premieres of some exciting new cult films.

The first Cine-Excess event was held at the Apollo West End 3rd-5th May 2007. The Guests of Honour included John Landis (An American Werewolf in London), Stuart Gordon (Re-Animator) and Brian Yuzna (Society). The conference also attracted over 45 cult film scholars from a diverse section of international locations including the UK, US, Canada, Australia, Germany, Spain, France, Italy, Malta, and Estonia.

Cine-Excess 2007 also featured the UK theatrical premieres of films such as Edmond (dir. Stuart Gordon), Last House in the Woods (dir. Gabriele Albanesi) as well as an exclusive screening of Taxidermia (dir. Gyorgy Palfi).

Following the success of Cine-Excess 2007, a follow-up event is planned at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London between 1st-3rd May 2008. Cine-Excess II will feature a 15 strand parallel conference structure which mixes discussion papers and plenary sessions with UK theatrical premieres of new cult movies and talks by leading cult filmmakers.

The Guest of Honour for the 2008 event is Roger Corman, the recipient of the first Cine-Excess Lifetime Achievement Award and other leading global figures in cult film are currently being confirmed. The call for papers for Cine-Excess II has just been released. Proposals are welcomed on, but not limited to, the following topics and areas:

Grindhouse: American Trash Traditions Reconsidered

Cult Auteurs, Cult Icons: New readings of leading cult filmmakers and Icons

Asian Invasion: Cult and Underground Cinemas From East and South East Asia

Grossed-Out: The Cult Body from comedy to 'gorno' and beyond

Cult Producers: Cult Showmen and Shockmeisters

Techno Cults: Short, Sharp, Shocks for the DVD, Internet & You Tube Generation

Cine-Sexcess: Studies in the Cult Erotic Image

Exploitation - No Place for a Woman? Female cult icons and auteurs

Exhibiting Excess: The Exhibition of Cult Material

Cult TV Past and Present: New Readings of Cult TV Traditions

Taking Trash Seriously: Theoretical and Production Perspectives on Pulp Film

Cruel New Wave: New Brit. Horrors

Educational Excess: Teaching 'Cult' at A Level

That's La Morte: Case-Studies in Italian Trash Film

Cult Crime: Cat and Mouse Case-Studies From the Wrong Side of the Law

Pulp Receptions: Cult Audiences and Consumers

Weird World Cinema: National Identity and Region in the Cult Image

Cult Case-Studies: Production and institutional studies of cult studios

Fear Today, Horror Tomorrow: Cult remakes and contemporary fears

We welcome individual submissions, panels and roundtable proposals.
Please send a 300 word abstract and a short (one page) C.V. by 25th January 2008, to

Leon Hunt
Brunel University
Uxbridge
Middlesex
UB8 3PH
UK
leon.hunt_at_brunel.ac.uk

Further details on Cine-Excess II can be found on the website: www.cine-excess.co.uk

Kidding Around, The Child in Film and Media - Call for Papers

Kidding Around: The Child in Film and Media
An Interdisciplinary Conference
February 29-March 1, 2008
University of the District of Columbia
CALL FOR PAPERS


The University of the District of Columbia Film Committee invites papers on the theme of the Child in Film and Media for an interdisciplinary conference to be held on the UDC campus on February 29 and March 1, 2008.

Representations of children in today's media intersect with contextual issues that demand scholarly consideration. As the academic and commercial markets' attention to children's literature and media increases, the need to explore how children are used, targeted, explored, and represented in books, films, games, and toys grows.

This conference will explore how different media, particularly film, deal with definitions of childhood, the place of the child in differing texts, and the connections scholars and critics have made with these various forms of media.

Papers might consider (but are not limited to) the following topics:

· Historical Intersections: Children's Media and History

· Illustrated and Animated: Visual Representations of Children

· So Unreal: Magic and Fantasy

· Dystopia/Utopia

· [Mis]appropriations of Racial Identity in Children's Media

· Consumerism, Corporatization, and Advertising: The Child and the Market

· Violence: Screen to Text

· The Elephant in the Room: Sex in Children's Media

· Nationalistic Fantasy, Identity, and Power

· Animals Among Us: Intersections of Human and Animal

· Graphic, Anime, and Manga: New Media, New Century

· Trains and Atari: Toys, Games, and Children

· Disability and Representations of the Child

· Him/Her/It: Gender and the Child

· The Virtual Space of Childhood: From 8-bit to HD

Papers addressing individual authors and works in developing these themes are encouraged. Panel proposals are welcome.

Please email your 250-word abstract, contact information, and a brief bio to Alexander Howe at: ahowe_at_udc.edu.

Deadline for Submissions: January 4, 2008

HARDcoded - Digital Punk Magicians

HARDcoded :: Digital Punk Magicians

SAT December 08 2007
1 PM - 9 PM
@ EN3MY
1550 N. Milwaukee Ave 3rd Fl. Chicago, IL 60622

FREE + OPEN!


++ simultaneously streaming @

CentroMultiMedia + BORDER
Mexico City DF, Mexico

HARDcoded is an ongoing collaboration between newMedia artists in Chicago + Mexico City, that explore the cross-over between digital noise, punk, + magic. HARDcoded is a wordplay between embedded/non-mailable data sets in software development, like End User License Agreements (or EULA) or closed-source proprietary computer applications, + the xXxHARDCORExXx ethic of Punk culture.

Our (artists + organizers alike) approach to reconstruct/disrupt the controlled environment of digital technology by breaking these social devices with wizardry. Here, wizardry is informed by Tolkien references in early moments of information technology + digital networking, as well as playfully applying narratives of spell casting, enchantment, + fantasy to the otherwise dull architecture of cyberspace.

This wizardy of course would be nothing without "magic." This "magic," which serves as ironic term with a critical bent, can break the spell of traditional methods of cultural communication + sharing in an ever-growing oppressive state.

HARDcoded seeks to create a space where ruptures in our digital playing field (glitch, noise, + hacked/repurposed material/tools) can take precedence over the norms of our contemporary static digital landscape. The collaboration borrows from a Punk ethics/ethos + the necessity for a sustainable break away from the normative practices of commercial platforms. By invoking these ideologies/methodologies HARDcoded hopes to provide/facilitate a DIY/DIT network of subversion. In attempting to approach this task, HARDcoded wishes to provide a social platform of workshops, talks, + performances (and hybrids of these three) to enable these fissures
to break through the veil of our closed-source expectations + reliance.

The Program consists of workshops/talks by ::

[1PM – 2.30PM ] Alex Ignlizian + Mark Beasley + Cassandra Rosas (Hardware Hacking/Building)

[2.30 PM – 3 PM] Jake Elliot dai5ychain.net (Reprogramming Computer Literacy)

[3 PM – 3.30 PM] Marisa Plumb Working Engineer, Pathegon corp. (Lecture/Performance)

[3. 30 PM – 4.30 PM] Temporary Services temporaryservices.org (Lecture on Urban Hacktivism)

[4.30 PM – 5 PM] criticalartware criticalartware.net (Media Art Histories Lecture)

[5 PM – 7 PM]
Installation By :: Mark Beasley (DotMatrix Printer + Sound Installation) Paul Hertz collaboratory.nunet.net/phertz/ (Ignotus the Mage, Performance/Installation)

[7 PM – 9 PM]
Nightly Performances/screening by ::
Valerie Brewer (Machinima Video)
Professor Pangaea (Machinima Video)
CHHO (The Chicago Hacked Hardware Orchestra, Performance from Workshop)
criticalartware w/ Morgan Higby Flowers criticalartware.net (Realtime Artware Development Performance)
I <3 Presets ilovepresets.com (Realtime Audio/Video performance)

@ EN3MY in Chicago, IL, United States.

Simultaneously, in Mexico City the HARDcoded Program consists of an open invitation for completely horizontally organized discussion + reflection

@ CentroMultiMedia in Mexico City, Mexico

+ Performances/Screenings by Ezequiel Netri, Lalo Melendez, Jaime Villarreal, Eusebio Bañuelos + an open jam session @ the BORDER in Mexico City, Mexico!

Transnational Cinema in Globalising Societies: Asia and Latin America

Transnational Cinema in Globalising Societies: Asia and Latin America
29-31 August

CALL FOR PAPERS

Jointly organised by the Institute for Comparative Cultural Studies, University of Nottingham Ningbo, China and the Universidad Iberoamericana Puebla, Mexico, to be held in Puebla, Mexico.



Keynote Speakers

- Professor Néstor García Canclini, Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana
- Professor Robert Stam, University of New York
- Professor Chris Berry, University of London, Goldsmith's College


If cinema was instrumental to nation building processes during the twentieth century, it has been equally central to their challenging, interrogation and sometimes reaffirmation in the twenty-first.

This is especially true for Asian and Latin American cinemas, as present conditions variously described as 'globalisation' or 'flexible accumulation' have wrought tremendous social change, both rising standards of living and increasing inequality; allowing for reverse cultural flows and also exposing the mediascapes of countries in these two regions to unprecedented contact with 'the West'; reducing their film production while also increasing availability of films made there.

We invite papers addressing the relationship between these cinemas and (post)national identity, cinema and modernity/ postmodernity, exilic cinema, diasporic and border filmmaking, the effects of digital technology on filmmaking and viewing in Asia and Latin America and, more generally, on the impact of globalisation on film industries in these two regions.


The following topics would be especially welcome:

- Contemporary issues of audience reception

- The role of co-productions

- Cross-fertilisation of genre across Asian/Latin American Cinemas

- The role of festivals in the construction and promotion of Asian and Latin American transnational cinemas

- Diasporic cinema

- Asian and Latin American directors and contemporary auteur theory

- The Cultural construction of Stars and Fandom in Internet communities

- Alternative versions of modernity in Asian and Latin American cinema


Send 300 word abstract to the organisers, Armida de la Garza and Claudia Magallanes, by 1 April 2008 to the following address: Armida.Delagarza@nottingham.edu.cn

New Nightmares : Issues and Themes in Contemporary Horror Cinema and Horror Film Criticism - Call for Papers

New Nightmares : Issues and Themes in Contemporary Horror Cinema and Horror Film Criticism

CALL FOR PAPERS

An International Conference at Manchester Metropolitan University

3 - 4 April 2008

Confirmed Keynote speakers:
Jay McRoy (University of Wisconsin)
Julian Petley (Brunel University)



Horror has been an area that has been at the forefront of a number of shifts within film studies, in particular the study of consumption, audiences and the industrial production of cinema. In light of this, this international conference, jointly organised by Manchester Metropolitan University and The University of Salford will promote dialogue and discussion around two areas:

- contemporary issues relating to the study of horror cinema
- developments in the genre over the last 10 years.

Proposals are welcomed on, but not limited to, the following topics:

- The direction of critical approaches to contemporary horror
- Revisions of established canons
- Recent cycles and franchises
- New research on overlooked films, directors and national cinemas
- Current trends in national cinemas
- New aesthetics
- Shifts in representations of gender, sexuality, race and class
- The effects of 9/11 on the American horror film
- Fears of the millennium / apocalypse
- Remakes – within and across national cinemas
- New directions within subgenres
- New approaches to the marketing of horror
- Has video/DVD/new technology changed the nature of the horror film?
- How have changing censorship laws impacted on recent horror production?

We particularly welcome new research from postgraduates and a number of bursaries are available.

All proposals should be submitted to the organising committee by Monday 14th January 2008

The conference organising committee is: Emily Brick and David Huxley for Manchester Metropolitan University, Ben Halligan and Andy Willis for The University of Salford.

Please send 200 word abstracts and enquiries to horror@mmu.ac.uk

THE SOCIAL - ONLINE, MOBILE AND UNPLUGGED SOCIAL NETWORKING

CONFERENCE THEME & CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS:
THE SOCIAL - ONLINE, MOBILE AND UNPLUGGED SOCIAL NETWORKING


Futuresonic 2008
Urban Festival of Art, Music & Ideas
1-4 May, Manchester, UK

The Futuresonic international conference and the Social Technologies Summit invite proposals for talks, presentations, workshops and session themes. Submissions of innovative formats for social interaction are encouraged.

The conference theme is The Social - Online, Mobile and Unplugged Social Networking.

The Futuresonic conference is a place where important international discussions take place. The conference will bring together leading figures to unpick the hype around the latest technological zeitgeist, broaden the debate, and propose and explore a critical understanding of social technologies.

Deadline for conference submissions -- 5pm 18th December 2007

http://www.futuresonic.com/submissions-conference

See also -- A GBP 5000 commission plus many other opportunities are available in the Futuresonic 2008 Art, Music & EVNTS calls for submissions.

http://www.futuresonic.com/getinvolved



THE CONFERENCE

Futuresonic brings 500 opinion formers, futurologists, artists, technologists and scientists from the digital culture, music and art communities to Manchester for four days of seminars, workshops and events.

At the heart of the festival is the internationally-acclaimed Futuresonic conference, and its focal point the Social Technologies Summit.

http://www.futuresonic.com/submissions-conference



CONFERENCE THEME: THE SOCIAL - ONLINE, MOBILE AND UNPLUGGED SOCIAL NETWORKING

The 2008 conference will explore the theme of The Social - Online, Mobile and Unplugged Social Networking. The conference will bring together leading figures to broaden the debate, and propose and explore a critical understanding of social technologies.

Submissions are invited that explore the new social spaces and the social implications of technologies for the many different kinds of people who make, use and are affected by them.

Computers have become social interfaces for sharing digital media and collaborating to build online communities and folksonomies. Social technologies create an extension of social space, and new ways for people to find the stuff that interests them, link up with others, and share. They include tools and applications that enable people to connect, share and interact, such as blogs, instant messenger, social software such as Flickr, FaceBook and Jaiku, and even the internet itself. 'Social technologies' can also refer to technologies created and maintained by social networks, such as communities of developers and users working collaboratively with open source tools.

What distinguishes social technologies is that they are bottom up and many-to-many instead of one-to-one or one-to-many. They can be seen as a part of a major cultural and social shift. And yet at the same time we also see how electronic communication can isolate us, as more and more people drown in a deluge of email that generates stress, even reducing IQ - puncturing the rose-tinted view that life is simply 'more social.' Additionally, 'online communities' are based upon an artificial equivalence between 'users' which obscures power relationships and issues of ownership.

Presentations might look at the implications of specific technologies, or address broader themes.

In all parts of the globe people are seeking to open up or hold onto places to meet and communicate freely, online and offline. In India we see emergent kinds of community media, in South Korea new social uses of the mobile internet, and in Brazil the spread of 'cultural hotspots'.

The conference will also mark 40 years since people took to the streets of Paris in 1968 calling for society to be abolished, and will assess the claims of todays digital culture as a potential catalyst of radical change amidst wider currents of radicalism.

The theme of Futuresonic 2008's Art strand is Social Networking Unplugged. It will be "unplugged" in a number of ways. There will be artworks involving offline (or unplugged) collaborative social experience and face to face social interaction. Other projects will look at who is excluded and left out of the loop of Web 2.0, and so "unplugged" in another way. Also there is the sense of pulling out the plug in order to take the new social spaces apart, see how they work, and put them together in new ways.

Web 2.0...
I take part
you take part
he takes part
we take part
you all take part
they profit.
(Slogan from Paris '68, remixed)

Digital culture burns bright with a vision of being not in isolation but in groups, placing the relations between people first. Beyond the hype lies ever greater isolation and conformity. Join us as we go in search of the social.

http://www.futuresonic.com/submissions-conference



CALL FOR CONFERENCE SUBMISSIONS

Futuresonic now invites submissions to the Futuresonic conference and the Social Technologies Summit.

Proposals for talks, presentations and workshops plus also session themes are invited. Submissions of innovative formats for social interaction are encouraged.

Deadline for conference submissions -- 5pm 18th December 2007

For details on submitting to the conference visit http://www.futuresonic.com/submissions-conference



BOOKING INFORMATION

- If you want to meet the creative thinkers, artists, programmers, digital media experts, scientists, industry specialists, hardware and software developers, marketers, political thinkers and activists

- If you want to find out about new technologies and their impact on tomorrow's society

- If you are looking for new and exciting ways to create, do business and interact

Then sign up early to the Futuresonic conference and the Social Technologies Summit.

Email Your Name, Address and Contact Details to ideas2008@futuresonic.com to receive full conference details and priority booking options.

CONFERENCE PASS

Early Bird Delegate Pass
GBP 60 (must be bought by February 1 2008)
Advance Delegate Pass
GBP 100
Delegate Pass (on the door)
GBP 150
Students/Concessions
GBP 30

Further discounts available for group bookings.

A limited number of pay-what-you-can Day Passes will be available on each day of the conference.

The Conference Pass includes access to all festival events.

Email your name, address and contact details to ideas2008@futuresonic.com and we will send you full details on Futuresonic Conference 2008 as well as priority booking options.



FUTURESONIC 2008

Futuresonic has 4 strands: Art, Music, Ideas and EVNTS. Currently in its 12th year, the festival occupies the orbits of both music and digital culture.

A focus in recent years has been presenting artworks in unexpected city spaces, and on social art and social technologies.

Futuresonic now invites artists, thinkers and makers to get social and present new types of collaborative social experience at Futuresonic 2008.

The Futuresonic festival theme is Social Networking Unplugged.

Join us as we go in search of the social today.

http://www.futuresonic.com

Futuresonic is supported by Arts Council England North West and presented in association with Imagination at Lancaster.