Friday, August 15, 2008

Transformations: Bernard Stiegler and the question of technics

Transformations is calling for submissions for Issue 17:
Bernard Stiegler and the Question of Technics

"What has been neglected and repressed by cognitivism, as well as by philosophy as a whole, going back to Plato's first gesture of thought, is the place of technics in general in life, technics as the condition of life that knows".

- Bernard Stiegler, "Desire and Knowledge: the Dead Seize the Living"

Bernard Stiegler's concept of technics has emerged recently as an important contribution to studies of the relation between technology, time and the human. Technics, or the prosthetic supplementation of the human in "default" of the origin, is the condition of "life that knows." Drawing from and critiquing various sources, including the work on evolutionary biology by
Gilbert Simondon, on palaoanthropology by Andre Leroi-Gourhan, on Martin Heidegger's existential analysis of Dasein and Jacques Derrida's différance as the logic of the supplement, Stiegler has proposed arguments about technology and its relation to the human that suggest a formulation of human life as "epiphylogenetic", that is, evolving according to the logic of
prosthetic supplementation. Transformations invites submissions of abstracts for articles to be considered for publication in late 2008 on the topic of "Stiegler and the question of technics."

Some possible themes include:

Steigler and Heidegger

Steigler and différance: encounters with Derrida

Technics and art

Steigler and the Greeks

Technics and technology

Technics and power

Technics and memory: epigenesis and epiphylogenesis

Technics and the culture industries

Abstracts (500 words): due 15 September
With a view to submit articles by 12th December

Abstracts to be forwarded to Warwick Mules, general editor at

For full details go to:

Flow Conference 2008 - Registration now open!

Registration is now open for


October 9-11, 2008
The University of Texas at Austin

Inaugurated in 2006, the Flow Conference is a spin-off of the online journal ( Flow, which is edited by graduate students in UT's Department of Radio-Television-Film.

The Flow Conference resembles traditional academic meetings in name only. There are no panels, no papers, and no plenary sessions. The conference consists of a series roundtables, each organized around a question about television and media culture contributed by recent
Flow columnists. The goal of the conference is to promote discussion amongst television and media scholars, media activists, television fans, policymakers, TV critics, and members of the media industries.

Please note that our Call for Papers is now closed, and roundtable participants have been accepted for the 2008 conference. Nevertheless, we welcome others who are interested to attend and to participate in the discussions.

For more information about the Flow Conference, please visit:

For questions about the conference, please send mail to:

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Communication Networks on the Web - Call for Papers


QMSS-2 2008 Workshop »Communication Networks on the Web«
Sponsored by the European Science Foundation

Date: 18 – 19 December 2008

Location: University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam School of Communications Research, Kloveniersburgwal 48, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Goal: The intensive use of new information and communication technologies, especially the web, by individuals and social actors generally has tremendously increased the availability of data and opportunities for data processing and analysis. This seminar will stress the value of taking appropriate theoretical perspectives and using appropriate analytic strategies in the study of (computer mediated) communication networks. The seminar will bring together leading researchers and young scientists from a range of disciplines to share knowledge and produce synergies that will define the research field.

Main topics of the workshop

1. Communication networks on the web as a theoretical and methodological challenge

- conceptualization of communication processes on the web
- possibilities and problems of theoretically informed social network analysis

2. Social structures on the web

- emergence of social structures in communication networks on the web
- interactional and community dynamics
- social roles, collective action

3. Dynamics of communication on the web

- structure of citation and collaboration ties
- structure of content
- combination of two approaches

4. Measuring and collecting data for communication networks on the web

- methodologies for analyzing communication networks on the web
- collecting, parsing, coding data
- identification of actors and identification of content

Format: The workshop is organized as follows. For each of the main topics, a prominent researcher delivers an invited lecture. The junior participants present their papers, which are commented upon by the invited speakers, followed by a discussion with the other participants. The papers will be distributed to the participants before the start of the workshop. Altogether, the workshop will host 4 invited speakers and a maximum of 20 junior presenters.

Invited speakers

Prof. Noshir Contractor, Northwestern University, USA.
Prof. Loet Leydesdorff, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
Prof. Mike Thelwall, University of Wolverhampton, United Kingdom.
Howard Welser PhD, Ohio University, USA.

Submission: Papers specifying a research design or presenting (preliminary) results by postgraduate students or junior researchers addressing the above topics are invited. In addition to a presentation, active participation in the discussions is expected. An extended abstract of the paper is required for submission.

All papers should be prepared in electronic form. Detailed submission directions will be available at QMSS-2 web site Extended abstracts must be written in English and should be between 1,000 – 1,500 words. Notification of acceptance will be given by October 15.

Important dates:
September 1: Deadline for submission of the extended abstracts
October 15: Authors of accepted papers are notified
December 1: Submission of full papers (app. 4000 words)
Please send your abstract to Wouter de Nooy ( and Gregor Petrič (

Travel and accommodation:
Participants' travel and accommodation expenses will be covered by the QMSS 2 programme, provided that they come from or are working in one of the 17 countries who support QMSS 2. To check eligibility, see

Language: The official language of the workshop will be English.

Dr. Gregor Petrič, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia.
Dr. Wouter de Nooy, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

The European Science Foundation (ESF) provides a platform for its Member Organisations to advance European research and explore new directions for research at the European level. Established in 1974 as an independent non-governmental organisation, the ESF currently serves 75 Member Organisations across 30 countries.

Networks and Their Philosophical Implications

NA-CAP@IU 2009: Networks and Their Philosophical Implications

June 14th-16th at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana

Call for Papers

Deadline: February 1st 2009 (firm)

In recent years, across several different academic disciplines, including biology, computer science, cognitive science, informatics, philosophy and psychology, a shift in the study of complex systems is readily visible. This shift away from a focus on the individual components of a system to the interrelations between them has provided the groundwork for what might broadly be called a "network" perspective, as it has become increasingly clear that simple components can produce astoundingly complex and varied behavior when they work in consort. Evidence for this observation is seen everywhere from biological neural networks, stigmergic systems, and animal behavior to networked computing, social networking, and dynamic systems. This conference will explore the philosophical implications of this network perspective as it applies to the broader scope of topics studied by our association.

To this end, we are interested in receiving submissions that explore themes in the intersection of philosophy and computing insofar as they involve, for instance:

* Academic/Scientific Citation Networks

* Artificial Neural (Connectionist) Networks

* Biological Neural Networks

* The Internet / World-Wide Web

* Multi-Agent Reasoning and Decision-Making

* Networked Computing

* Networked Robotics / Swarm Intelligence

* Semantic Networks

* Social Networking

* Stigmergic Systems

* Ubiquitous Computing

Individual submissions might address a range of subtopics, including the ethical and political implications of social networking, theoretical analyses of networked computing, the implications of artificial or biological neural networks for issues in the philosophy of mind, how community and technology enable networked thinking, reasoning and decision-making, etc. We also welcome submissions not directly on the conference theme, though first preference will go to those that fit within the broad parameters outlined here.

We welcome submissions for papers, panels and demonstrations of computing and philosophy applications. Papers and demonstrations will be allotted 40 minutes, including time for commentary and questions (25 minutes for presentation, 5 for commentary and 10 for Q&A).
120-minute slots are available for panels and can be divided as the panelists see fit.

For papers, please limit submission length to 3,000 words, keeping in mind that the IACAP discourages participants from reading their papers to the audience. (Many presenters prepare slides using PowerPoint or some other software package. However, these need not be submitted with your original paper.) Include also a 250-word abstract.

The IACAP discourages "show-and-tell" demonstrations, but welcomes submissions that show a new and interesting application of computers to philosophy. Submissions in this category should consist of a 1,500-word abstract outlining what is innovative about the application and the questions pertinent to philosophy that your demonstration will raise.

For panels, please submit a 1,000-word summary of the panel as a whole, along with 300 to 500-word abstracts for each of its various components.

The conference will be accepting electronic submissions appropriately prepared for blind review on or before February 1st, 2009. Additional details will be posted to the conference website at before early December and mailed to the IACAP-announce mailing list. (See to join.)

This conference is one of several regional conferences associated with the International Association for Computing and Philosophy. To learn more about the IACAP, including its other conferences and membership details, visit the organization's website at

Media in Transition 6: stone and papyrus, storage and transmission

Media in Transition 6: stone and papyrus, storage and transmission

International Conference
April 24-26, 2009
Massachusetts Institute of Technology


In his seminal essay “The Bias of Communication” Harold Innis distinguishes between time-based and space-based media. Time-based media such as stone or clay, Innis agues, can be seen as durable, while space-based media such as paper or papyrus can be understood as portable, more fragile than stone but more powerful because capable of transmission, diffusion, connections across space. Speculating on this distinction, Innis develops an account of civilization grounded in the ways in which media forms shape trade, religion, government, economic and social structures, and the arts.

Our current era of prolonged and profound transition is surely as media-driven as the historical cultures Innis describes. His division between the durable and the portable is perhaps problematic in the age of the computer, but similar tensions define our contemporary situation. Digital communications have increased exponentially the speed with which information circulates. Moore's Law continues to hold, and with it a doubling of memory capacity every two years; we are poised to reach transmission speeds of 100 terabits per second, or something akin to transmitting the entire printed contents of the Library of Congress in under five seconds.

Such developments are simultaneously exhilarating and terrifying. They profoundly challenge efforts to maintain access to the vast printed and audio-visual inheritance of analog culture as well as efforts to understand and preserve the immense, enlarging universe of text, image
and sound available in cyberspace.

What are the implications of these trends for historians who seek to understand the place of media in our own culture?

What challenges confront librarians and archivists who must supervise the migration of print culture to digital formats and who must also find ways to preserve and catalogue the vast and increasing range of words and images generated by new technologies? How are shifts in distribution and circulation affecting the stories we tell, the art we produce, the social structures and policies we construct?

What are the implications of this tension between storage and transmission for education, for individual and national identities, for notions of what is public and what is private?

We invite papers from scholars, journalists, media creators, teachers, writers and visual artists on these broad themes. Potential topics might include:

• The digital archive

• The future of libraries and museums

• The past and future of the book

• Mobile media

• Historical systems of communication

• Media in the developing world

• Social networks

• Mapping media flows

• Approaches to media history

• Education and the changing media environment

• New forms of storytelling and expression

• Location-based entertainment

• Hyperlocal media and civic engagement

• New modes of circulation and distribution

• The transformation of television -- from broadcast to download

• Cosmopolitanism backlashes against media change

• Virtual worlds and digital tourism

• The continuity principle: what endures or resists digital transformation?

• The fate of reading


Abstracts of no more than 500 words or full papers should be sent to Brad Seawell no later than Friday, Jan. 9, 2009. We will evaluate abstracts and full papers on a rolling basis and early submission is highly encouraged. All submissions should be sent as
attachments in a Word format. Submitted material will be subject to editing by conference organizers.

Email is preferred, but submissions can be mailed to:

Brad Seawell
MIT 14N-430
77 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02139

Please include a biographical statement of no more than 100 words. If your paper is accepted, this statement will be used on the conference Web site.

Please monitor the conference Web site at for registration information, travel information and conference updates.

Abstracts will be accepted on a rolling basis until Jan. 9, 2009.

The full text of your paper must be submitted no later than Friday, April 17. Conference papers will be posted to the conference Web site and made available to all conferees.

Web 2.0: before, during and after the event - call for papers

Web 2.0: before, during and after the event
An issue of the Fibreculture Journal critically exploring the ontogenesis of Web 2.0

Call for Papers

Issue Editors: Anna Munster and Andrew Murphie
Completed papers submitted by October 31, 2008
Publication date: May 1, 2009

Issue Focus:

In 2005 Tim O'Reilly famously used the phrase 'an attitude, not a technology' to describe the burgeoning experience of Web 2.0. After 3 or 4 years, the hype surrounding associated notions of user-generated content, the 'wisdom of crowds', 'the long tail' and social networking both continues and fades. Practices such as collaborative tagging and micro-blogging have become everyday online gestures, while YouTube, Facebook and Bebo comfortably colonise the network horizon as default interfaces. 'Objects', 'subjects' and 'content' are dissappearing on a massive scale – far larger and faster than in their much-touted postmodern demise – and 'environments', 'context' and 'worlds' become the key modes of online generation and production. This suggests that Web 2.0 may be more akin to a topology rather than attitude or technology – one which launches us in(to) the middle of things.

If Web 2.0's cartography is topological (repeated production of selfsame space via variation), then its temporality might best be understood through considerations of 'the event'. As Maurizzio Lazzarato has suggested, everyday actions - going to bed, turning on the television, logging on – comprise our contemporary habitual corporeal events, but these are simultaneously and only the punctuation of the more continuous event of informatic flows. If Web 2.0 is an 'event' that somehow semiotically launched itself around 2004-5, its temporality has now become that of an 'always'.

In this issue of the fibreculture journal, however, we invite contributions that critically and creatively rethink the event of Web 2.0. To adlib with Lazzarato, and following Deleuze and Guattari's articulation of the virtualities of events, another possible world/'web' is always there, in potential. Hence Web 2.0 is not simply what it is - attitude, technology or topology - but is still under production, in active ontogenesis and therefore up for grabs.

We ask authors to address the actual and potential existence of genealogies, incompatabilities and new modes of making and thinking Web 2.0. For example, should the historical relations between Web 1.0 and Web 2.0 be thought in terms of radical break? Or can we – as Olia Lialina has suggested in her consideration of the recouped aesthetics of old homepages by the templates of MySpace – see Web 2.0 as a freezing of earlier more dynamic flows? What lies outside of Facebook, indeed beyond the additive logic of 'friends'? And after we break up with our 'friends', what other circuits might emerge? A number of key theorists such as Terranova, Lovink and Rossiter, Galloway and Thacker have begun to address the presence of incompatabilities, counterprotocols and conflict as constitutive of the network. We are seeking papers that take these and new concepts that biurficate the 'always' into rethinking the topology of Web 2.0.

Specific Topics for address include:

-ontogenetic approaches to network events

-creative genealogies of Web 2.0

-investigations of 'subnetworks' and alternatives to standardised templates and interfaces

-investigations of confictual and differential implementations of: search, APIs, social networking, micro-blogging, collaborative tagging,vlogging etc

-critical analyses of the relations between social movements and Web 2.0 (note: no simple empirical studies of a social movement's use of Web 2.0 services or technologies)

-aesthetic analyses and transformations of Web 2.0

-Web 3.0 as ontogenetic event, topological shift or the "network to come".

Articles must be submitted in full fibreculture journal house style. You must first read the Guidelines for Submission at You can access information about house style at

Please note, submissions not in house style will automatically be returned to authors for formatting. You will not be able to have your paper considered for publication unless you have formatted it correctly. The journal is peer reviewed and authors are expected to take readers
reports into consideration when finalising their articles for publication. Negotiation with the editors over potential changes is usual practice.

Please submit articles no later than October 31, 2008 to either Anna Munster, a-dot-munster-at-unsw-dot-edu-dot-au, or Andrew Murphie a-dot-murphie-at-unsw-dot-edu-dot-au.
You must use the phrase 'Web 2.0 event issue' in your subject header.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Handbook of Research on Virtual Environments for Corporate Education: Employee Learning and Solutions

Call for Chapter Proposals for Handbook of Research on Virtual Environments for Corporate Education: Employee Learning and Solutions
Proposal Submission Deadline: November 15, 2008

Editor: William F. Ritke-Jones, Ph.D., CyberMations Consulting Group

Introduction to the Subject Area

Increasingly, corporations have begun to see the educational potential of virtual realities. For instance, one company has used Second Life, a popular virtual reality for education and social networking, for training receptionists on how to greet visitors, another has used Second Life to simulate a wreck scene in order to train emergency personnel, and another is using Second Life to train managers. Others have considered Second Life's potential for collaborative team
training and for cross cultural training. Indeed, because of its unique characteristics and its power to bring dispersed people together in almost "real" space for a relatively low cost, virtual
environments may become the preferred educational arena for corporations, an evolved Second Life and new environments like Wonderland and Croquet being the places where corporate employees are educated.

Objectives of the Book

The Handbook of Research on Virtual Environments for Corporate Education: Employee Learning and Solutions will be a resource for those who want to create corporate educational practices in virtual environments. As such, it will provide comprehensive coverage of the most important issues, concepts, and trends in the use of virtual environments for corporate education. Moreover, the volume will exhibit examples of corporate education occurring in virtual environments as well as examples of higher education practices in virtual environments that could provide models for corporate education.

The volume will feature entries of about 8000-10000 words covering a wide range of topics related to virtual environments for corporate education. Successful contributions will provide definitions, explanations, and applications of various pertinent topics and issues rather than in-depth discussions of narrow subjects.

The publication will help provide those involved with corporate education access to the latest knowledge about virtual environments and how they can be used to effectively educate employees. The volume will also help to instigate discussion among researchers, scholars,
and students about virtual environments and how they can be made to reach their greatest potential as places where learning occurs.

Audience for the Proposed Text

• Executives, manager, and administrators in business, non-profits, government, and academia who need to make decisions about how or if virtual environments can be used in their organizations;

• Corporate and non-profit trainers, educators and consultants who need to understand how and why to use virtual environments in their curriculum;

• Researchers investigating virtual environments and how they can be used in corporate education;

• Librarians working for corporate, government, or educational organizations (individuals who are responsible for providing their organization with current and comprehensive reference materials on important topics affecting public and private sector practices);

• Corporate, non-profit and education consultants who need to evaluate and design educational curriculum and who need to advise educators and trainers on the use of technology in their educational programs.

Suggested Content Areas

Prospective subject areas and specific topics for this publication include, but are not limited to, the following:

- History of Virtual Environments and their applications in corporate education

- Theoretical foundations for using Virtual Environments in corporate education, i.e., workforce training, computer mediated communication, space and identity issues, adult learning theories in cyberspace, distance education

- Other distance learning technologies and how they oppose and complement virtual environments and its application to corporate education

- Reasons for using virtual environments instead of physical space; What kind of learning can better occur in a virtual environment?

- Examples of how corporate education uses and hopes to use Virtual Environments

How higher education is using virtual environments and how these practices could be adopted for corporate use

- Challenges to using virtual environments in corporate education and how they can (or cannot) be met

- Future trends in virtual environments for corporate education and calls for additional research

Submission Procedure

Prospective authors are invited to submit chapter proposals of 200-500 words on or before November 15, 2008. In their proposal, prospective authors should clearly explain:

• The purpose and the contents of their proposed chapter

• How their proposed chapter relates to the overall objectives of the book

Authors will be notified of the status of their proposal and sent chapter organization guidelines by December 15, 2008. Full Drafts of chapters will be due by March 15, 2009. All submitted chapters will be reviewed on a double-blind review basis.

This book is scheduled to be published by IGI Global (formerly Idea Group Inc.), publisher of the "Information Science Reference" (formerly Idea Group Reference) and "Medical Information Science Reference" impints. For additional information regarding the publisher, please visit

Please send inquiries or submit proposals electronically in Rich Text Format to Dr. William F. Ritke-Jones as an email attachment.

The Big Picture on Small-Screen Advertising

Imagine holding all TV programming, movies and millions of user-generated videos in the palm of your hand—then add in a few spot ads. When it comes to justifying serious investments in mobile video and television advertising, marketers are struggling.

On one hand, they cannot ignore the attraction of combining the reach of television with the targeting capabilities of mobile. But, on the other hand, consumer adoption of mobile video and television so far has been underwhelming.

"Historically, the gap between hope and reality for mobile video/television has been attributed to immature technology," says John du Pre Gauntt, senior analyst at eMarketer and author of the new report, Mobile Video and Television: Ads Wait for a Clearer Picture.

"Video content on mobile phones looked broken or washed out. Soundtracks often did not align with the moving images," explains Mr. Gauntt. "The mobile devices themselves were voracious consumers of battery life when displaying video content. And carriers were not sure how commercial video and television services would affect their mobile networks."

Fortunately, many of these issues are being resolved.

"iPhone's success raised the bar of consumer expectations regarding mobile multimedia," says Mr. Gauntt. "Handset manufacturers worldwide are in the midst of revamping their product lines against this new benchmark."

The question then becomes: Will ad revenues follow?

"It is difficult to create forecasts for mobile video and mobile TV advertising due to the fact that the market is still fragmented and undeveloped," says Mr. Gauntt.

iSuppli estimates that mobile video advertising worldwide will reach $427 million this year.

Furthermore, iSuppli forecasts that mobile video advertising worldwide will be nearly $3.8 billion in 2011.

On the somewhat higher side, Magna Insights estimates that online video media advertising will reach $555 million this year in the US alone, and rise 45% to $805 million by 2009.

Nevertheless, Mr. Gauntt cautions, "Until consumers are presented with a clear-cut, simple and inexpensive value model for accessing mobile video and TV content, it will be hard to segment audiences at either an industry or geographic level."

full article with graphs and stats click here

10 week series on Politics and Experimental Film

10 week series on Politics and Experimental Film

Measures is a new series of seminars that use screening, reading, discussion and analysis to look at critical assumptions about the image and its meaning once a week over a 10 week period. The first series 'Politics and the Experimental Film: a sense of urgency' will by led by AL Rees with one session led by Patrick Keiller who will discuss his film 'Robinson in Space'.

Rees will examine key passages of work by (amongst others): Bunuel, Anstey, Richter, The Duvet Brothers, Vertov, Watkins, Le Grice, Gidal, Eatherly, Rhodes, Straub-Huillet, Conner, Debord, Welsby and Ivens seeking the elusive union of film and politics in the last half-century to question what a contemporary political cinema might be?

More information is available at under 'measures':

Price for 10 weeks: £100
Start date: 15 September 2008
Top Floor
316-318 Bethnal Green Road
E2 0AG

Call for submissions for an upcoming book on serious games

Serious Game Design and Development: Technologies for Training and Learning

A book edited by Dr. Janis Cannon-Bowers & Dr. Clint Bowers
University of Central Florida
Proposal Submission Deadline: September 5, 2008

Purpose and Goals of the Book
The use of gaming approaches for more serious purposes is not a new phenomenon. Teachers have used board games, memory games, and others in classrooms for decades. However, the advent of video gaming technologies created a host of opportunities for people to use the
immersive, interactive, environments provided by such technology to deliver pedagogical content in a simulated environment that is thought to engender deeper learning in a more entertaining environment.

The use of video games for serious purposes was largely fostered by the US military, which saw the low-fidelity simulation abilities of these platforms as a low-cost way to deliver training. Buoyed by successes in this market, developers have expanded their activities to a whole range
of serious applications, including K-12 education, advertising, and social change, to name a few. The increasing use of these games has now drawn the interest of various disciplines within the scientific community, who seek to understand the nature of effective games and to provide guidance for how best to harness the power of gaming technology to successfully accomplish the more serious goal.

At this point, several serious games have been fielded, with varying levels of success. Many of these games have not been formally evaluated, while others have been, but the results have not been published. Conversely, scientists are beginning to report results about effective game elements, but there is not a clear conduit to get these results to the developers who could most use them.

Our goal, therefore, is to create a volume that seeks to “bridge the gap” between development and science. Specifically, we will approach leaders in the game development community to share their successes and the area where they could benefit from scientific guidance. Similarly, we will invite prominent scientists to describe their current findings and to provide their input on the future of the field.

Recommended topics include, but are not limited to, the following:

- Serious Games in K-12 Education

- Serious Games in Postsecondary Education

- Serious Games in Business and Industry

- Serious Games in Training

- Serious Games and Health

- Serious Games as Social Tools

- Research in Serious Games

- Serious Games in the Military

- Serious Games and Communication

Submission Procedure
Researchers and practitioners are invited to submit on or before September 30, 2008 , a 2-3 page chapter proposal clearly explaining the mission and concerns of his or her proposed chapter. Authors of accepted proposals will be notified by November 30, 2008 about the status of their proposals and sent chapter guidelines. Full chapters are expected to be submitted by February 1, 2009. All submitted chapters will be reviewed on a double-blind review basis. This book is scheduled to be published by IGI Global (formerly Idea Group Inc.), publisher of the
“Information Science Reference” (formerly Idea Group Reference) and “Medical Information Science Reference” imprints. For additional information regarding the publisher, please visit

Inquiries and submissions can be forwarded electronically (Word document or pdf) to:
Dr. Clint Bowers
Department of Psychology
University of Central Florida
Orlando, FL 32801

College Students Epitomizing the Mobile Lifestyle

Today's collegians are becoming road warriors, ditching their desktop PCs for laptops and mobile phones.

Seven out of 10 US college students surveyed in August 2008 owned a laptop, while student desktop PC ownership dropped from more than 90% to just over 50% in five years, according to an Alloy Media + Marketing-sponsored study conducted by Harris Interactive.

"Students have come to expect 24/7 connectedness and mobility," said Samantha Skey, EVP at Alloy, in a statement. "Now flexibility and ease of function to socialize, communicate and be entertained is what they're demanding."

TV ads may work differently with the university set. A full 62% of students surveyed said they watched TV online. One-quarter of respondents went to major network Websites, but more than one-third went to YouTube to get their TV. The balance used other video sites like Veoh, Hulu and Joost.

Between falling technology prices and a down economy, average back-to-school spending will dip to under $600 per consumer this year, down from more than $641 in 2007, according to a National Retail Federation-sponsored study by BIGresearch.

for the full report with graphs and stats click here

Monetizing MySpace Traffic

Last week, News Corp. said that Fox Interactive Media (FIM) generated $225 million in revenues in the quarter ended June 30, 2008, up 23% year over year. But revenue growth is sliding: FIM revenues climbed 55% year over year in the quarter ended March 31, 2008 (News Corp.'s fiscal Q3), to $210 million, and 87% in fiscal Q2, to $233 million.

Adding it all up, FIM generated revenues of $856 million in fiscal 2008—off 14% from the $1 billion target News Corp. chief Rupert Murdoch had set this time last year, and also down from the $900 million News Corp. had suggested FIM would earn in last quarter's earnings call.

FIM consists of a number of Websites, including MySpace,, PhotoBucket and News Corp. has never said publicly how much of FIM's revenues come from MySpace, but the generally accepted estimate is 80%. That would put MySpace at about $685 million in revenues for the fiscal year (including both US and international).

Despite the slowing rate of revenue growth, an eMarketer analysis of FIM US revenues versus unique visitors shows that FIM is getting better at monetizing its traffic.

eMarketer estimates that the US accounts for 80% of total FIM revenues. That puts US revenues at FIM at $180 million in the June quarter, up 23% from $146 million in the same quarter in 2007. By contrast, the average number of monthly unique visitors in the US grew just 6.6% in the same time period, according to eMarketer's analysis of comScore Media Metrix data.

US monthly revenue per unique visitor is also growing. In the 2007 June quarter, FIM earned roughly $0.59 in average monthly revenue per US unique visitor, according to eMarketer's calculations. In the 2008 June quarter, average monthly revenue per US unique visitor was $0.68—a 15% increase.

However, monetization has fallen off since late 2007, when average monthly revenue per unique visitor reached $0.75.

To develop its figures, eMarketer estimated US quarterly revenues for FIM and then divided those estimates into three even parts to generate monthly revenue numbers (a rough calculation, of course, but FIM does not release monthly revenues). Then, we divided each monthly revenue figure by monthly US unique visitor totals as measured by comScore. The resulting dollar amount was then averaged over the three months of each quarter.

One factor driving better monetization is MySpace's HyperTargeting initiative, in which display ads are targeted based on information users put in their profiles. One-half of all ad buys now include HyperTargeting, and for the past two quarters CPMs for HyperTargeting campaigns have been more than double those for nontargeted advertising, News Corp. COO Peter Chernin said during last week's earnings conference call.

for the full article with graphs and stast click here

M/C Journal of Media and Culture special issue on 'recover'

M/C - Media and Culture is calling for contributors to the 'recover' issue of M/C Journal

M/C Journal is looking for new contributors. M/C is a crossover journal between the popular and the academic, and a blind- and peer-reviewed journal. In 2008, M/C Journal celebrates its tenth anniversary.

To see what M/C Journal is all about, check out our Website, which contains all the issues released so far, at ( To find out how and in what format to contribute your work, visit (

Call for Papers: 'recover'
Edited by Henk Huijser and Janine Little

As 2008 marks the tenth anniversary of M/C Journal, there is opportunity to take stock and reflect on its impact and value. So too, can we revisit its archives and recover some of its best material in rediscovery. Such a process allows for recovery of certain trends and movements that could be said to characterise the preceding decade. While measuring time in ten year
blocks is essentially an artificial exercise, it can also be seen as a practical means of stimulating reflection on what has been recovered. This is important to consider at a time when speed is increasingly of the essence in all aspects of life, but especially in media and cultural production, as well as academic production. In such a climate, time to recover is increasingly sparse, with the focus sometimes overwhelmingly on the future. In this context, recovering the past is often only partial recovery: a process of raiding that past for fragments applicable to an imagined future, a recasting of memories in brighter lights. Still, recovering something may give it new life, in different colours or a different wrapping. It may be letting go of the past, understanding, and
reconciling the interconnections between private and global landscapes of healing - culturally, physically, spiritually.

We invite submissions that address the process of 'recovery' from a wide variety of angles. This may include, but is certainly not limited to, recovery of cultural artefacts; recovery after prolonged periods of dominant political ideologies; recovery of memory; recovery after war or
personal loss; and ultimately, the role of both 'old' and 'new' media in all such processes. Let us recover!

Contact the editors at, and submit submit articles of 3,000 words in length through our Website at

Article deadline: 10 Oct. 2008
Issue release date: 10 Dec. 2008

M/C Journal was founded (as "M/C - A Journal of Media and Culture") in 1998 as a place of public intellectualism analysing and critiquing the meeting of media and culture. Contributors are directed to past issues of M/C Journal for examples of style and content, and to the submissions page for comprehensive article submission guidelines. M/C Journal articles are blind peer-reviewed.

Further M/C Journal issues scheduled for 2008 and 2009:

'recover': article deadline 10 October 2008, release date 10 December 2008
'still': article deadline 16 January 2009, release date 11 March 2009
M/C - Media and Culture is located at
M/C Journal is online at
All past issues of M/C Journal on various topics are available there.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Critical Essays on the Films of Anthony Minghella

Critical Essays on the Films of Anthony Minghella

We are pleased to request academicians, filmmakers, playwrights, directors, musicians and screenwriters to submit proposals for critical essays on the works of Anthony Minghella. The volume will be brought out by a reputed international publishing house. Topics include but are not limited to the following:

• Minghella's filmmaking techniques

• The adapted screenplays

• The use of location

• Characterization

• Homosexuality in The Talented Mr Ripley

• The treatment of war in The English Patient and Cold Mountain

• Fantastic realism in Truly, Madly, Deeply

• The plays as early works foreshadowing Minghella's cinematic achievements

• The portrayal of Italy in Minghella's works

• The depiction of autism in Breaking and Entering

• The use of music

• Jazz in The Talented Mr Ripley and/or other works

• Classical music in The Talented Mr Ripley and/or other works

• The contextual use of cathedrals in integral scenes in The English Patient and The Talented Mr Ripley

• Techniques used to create authenticity in period pieces

• Interviews with actors, editors and other individuals relating their working experiences with Minghella

Proposals for papers that seek to analyse specific scenes in detail are especially encouraged. Papers should contain macrocosmic views of Minghella's works rather than be dominated by general/thematic concerns. Depending on the viability of received proposals, two or three volumes may be planned.

Proposals should be received by September 1st, 2008, and completed papers will be due around June 2009. IMPORTANT: Please inquire about the availability and feasibility of specific topics before preparing proposals.

Free Internet Magazine Subscriptions & Technical Document Downloads

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It is published by Electronic Retailer Media Group, a division of the trade association ERA, this publication also focuses on emerging trends such as social media and mobile marketing. Online Strategies profiles some of today's most engaging industry experts, as well as innovative companies that have leveraged the Internet to successfully market their products and enhance their brand identity.

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Edited Collection on TV series Heroes - call for papers

Heroes edited collection - Call for Papers

Investigating Heroes: Truth, Justice and Quality TV
(Deadline 01/09/2008)

Editor Dr David Simmons

Heroes has proven to be one of the breakout Television hits of 2006/2007. In a climate in which many examples of 'Quality' genre television have found themselves facing cancellation in spite of their devoted fan base/s, Heroes appears to have managed to establish a foothold in the contemporary TV landscape, being commissioned for both a second and third series (alongside a host of merchandise).

Part of the show's appeal seems to lie in its ability to straddle the divide between the demands of genre and mainstream audiences by employing superhero/comic book trappings in an ostensibly realistic milieu. Indeed, to put it simply comic book fans can recognise and appreciate the references and self-referential nature of the show while a more mainstream audience is able to engage with the broader concept of 'ordinary' people dealing with the extraordinary circumstances.

As a result it is possible to suggest that Heroes (like the X-Files, Buffy and, most recently, Lost) has transcended the limitations of its genre in terms of audience demographics to become that rare thing, a cult show that receives both high ratings and critical genre acclaim.

Investigating Heroes: Truth, Justice and Quality TV seeks to explore the important issues surrounding Heroes, in terms of its content, marketing and reception. In particular, the book will investigate the show's fusion of 'cultish' and mainstream trappings into a cohesive and successful whole. It will look at how Heroes has managed to combine supposedly' lowbrow' elements (comic books, superheroes) with a Quality TV form that prizes factors such as moral ambiguity, depth of characterisation and liberalism. Finally it will analyse what this blending process suggests about the current hybrid state of genre and Quality television.

While we have a number of confirmed contributors already I am currently soliciting abstracts of 350 - 500 words for essays to be included alongside these in an upcoming volume to be published as part of I.B.Taurus' Investigating Cult TV series.

Possible topics of discussion might include:

Heroes and the superhero - Connections to Comic books/graphic novels in terms of stories, characters, presentation. Links to other revisionist comic book texts e.g. Watchmen, Unbreakable, X-Men etc. The involvement or lack thereof of comic book writers/artists (Tim Sale, Jeph Loeb etc). Use of heroic archetypes, Joseph Campbell, Carl Jung etc

Heroes and representation - The nuclear/non-nuclear family unit. Fathers. Race: the shows depiction of both white and non-white, ethnic 'superhero's' and its nomination for an 'image award' by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. Depictions of Female sexuality. Crisis in masculinity. Homo-sociality.

Heroes and ideology - The threat of the 'nuclear' destruction of New York and its links to 9/11. The Company and its connection to the contemporary 'war on terror'. Evolutionist/Darwinist theories.

Heroes and 'Quality TV' - Serial Narrative. The hybridising of cult, genre and Mainstream TV. Heroes as a multi-media experience; web comics, graphic novels, novels. Heroes fandom.

Final essays should be approximately 6,000 to 8,000 words, referenced in MLA endnote style.

Please attach a short biography or a resume with your abstract, and email to with the word "Heroes" somewhere in the subject line

Conference on Sexualities In and Out of Time - Call for Papers

Sex/ualities In and Out of Time

Edinburgh - St Andrews Interdisciplinary Sex/ualities Conference 2008
Edinburgh, U.K., 28-29 November 2008

Keynote Speakers: Professor Judith Halberstam & Professor Claire Colebrook

Round Table Participants: Professor Lorna Hutson, Professor Laura Marcus, Professor Gill Plain, Dr Sarah Dillon, Dr Dr Michèle Mendelssohn

Conference Focus:
The question of time has become a major concern in critical theory and is proving to be a
particularly useful means of approaching gender and sex/uality. Important recent work in the
field of gender studies and queer theory has begun to explicitly address and render visible how
time comes to structure and determine the meaning of bodily experiences and expressions.

Non-normative sex/ualities are commonly delegated out of time, for instance, via the promise of
futurity and the negation of historical grounding and traditions. The attempt to locate these very same bodies and their sexual practices in time raises the question whether time can be refigured or manipulated in order to open up the possibility of epistemological and ontological alternatives.

This conference aims to explore present and past narratives of sexuality, the various links between heterogeneous temporalities and dissident sex/ualities and to ask what is at stake
in the recent turn to time in gender studies and queer theory.

The conference is interdisciplinary and open to all research students and academics. We strongly encourage proposals from doctoral students at any stage of their research and from all disciplines.

Topics for papers can include, but are not limited to:

- Investigating and challenging normative figurations of time and becoming

- Back to the roots: alternative genealogies, queer historiographies and the desire for traditions

- Histories of sex/uality and possible rewritings of the history of sex/uality

- No future, queer future? Queer theory reproductivity and the struggle with futurity

- Queer utopias/dystopias

- Visionary sex: future sex practices and technophilic constructions of sex/uality

- Representing time/sex: temporal erotics in film, literature and modern culture

- Temporalities and sex/ualities in narration

- History and development of gender/sex/ualities studies: where we are now?

- Post-gender: the end of gender and/or gender studies?

- Temporalising sex/ualities: anticipation, identity and desire

- How sexuality can be used to rethink time

Submission Details:
Please send a 300-word abstract for 20-mintue papers along with your name and affiliation to by 15th August. The organisers will contact
successful applicants by 25th August with full details and registration information. Please
indicate in your email if you are an AHRC-funded doctoral student.

The conference is a joint venture between the Universities of St Andrews and Edinburgh and
supported by the AHRC.

Major "Student As Scholar" Blog Entries

There are several major additions to the "Student As Scholar" Blog.

The "Student As Scholar" blog is devoted to documenting relevant literature that supports the view that : "Undergraduate education should adopt the "Student as Scholar" Model throughout the curriculum, where scholar is conceived in terms of an attitude, an intellectual posture, and a frame of mind derived from the best traditions of an engaged liberal arts education."

Undergraduate Research: Pedagogy For The 21st Century

National Conferences on Undergraduate Research

WebGURU: Web Guide To Research For Undergraduates

Research Link 2000: Bringing Research-based Experimental Systems to the Undergraduate Biology Curriculum

CUR 2008 National Conference: Frontiers and Challenges in Undergraduate Research

Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR)

Virtual Worlds for Virtual Collaboration

Undergraduates as Researchers: Using Original Archives and Historical Sources

Monday, August 11, 2008

Flow Journal, Vol. 8, Issue 5 now online

We want to let you know that the new issue of Flow: A Critical Forum on Television and Media Culture is available at

This issue features columns from Ethan Thompson, Joshua Green, John Cline, Dana C. Gravesen, and Evan Elkins .

This issue's columns in brief:

"iWant My TweenTV: iCarly, Sitcom 2.0"
by Ethan Thompson
An examination of iCarly’s convergence comedy.

"MisUnderstanding YouTube"
by Joshua Green
A look at YouTube’s issues with copyright infringement.

"Bazin’s Action Hero?"
by John Cline
( )
A discussion of Rambo (2008) and the possibility of a “post-realist” cinema.

"Don’t Drop the Soap Opera: Decoding Queer Visibility on As the World Turns"
by Dana C. Gravesen
A critical look at the politics of queer representation on daytime television.

"Great Job?: Tim and Eric's Comedy of Failure"
by Evan Elkins
A look at the bizarre comedy of Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job!

Are organizations able to learn? - call for papers

CALL FOR PAPERS: Are organizations able to learn?
A special issue of the journal Learning Inquiry

Special Issue Editor:
Anders Örtenblad
Halmstad University, Sweden

Please submit papers by September 1st, 2008 at:

Many of those who write about organizational learning emphasize that it is still a question of individual learning--learning is a pure individual phenomenon. Others claim that organizational learning only makes sense as a metaphor, and should therefore not be understood literally. Yet others still ask for proofs for in which ways individuals and organizations are similar. These perspectives deny the collective or organic nature of the organization and organizational learning.

The more traditional perspective of organizational learning has elements that can be interpreted as organizational learning, such as the storing of what the individuals have learnt into the
organizational memory/mind. The newer and more social perspectives on organizational learning leave space for regarding the organization, not the individuals, as the learning unit.

The goal of this special issue is to explore the often taken for granted assumption, that the only learning entity is the individual.

We want papers to challenge this mainstream perspective and to explore the wide possibility of the literatures and research that addresses organizational learning qua organizations. We invite argumentative papers arguing in favour of that organizations as such are capable of learning.

Papers on related topics, such as those that interrogate the questions surrounding levels of analysis (individual or organizational) are also welcomed.

The papers may be based on empirical evidence or may be viewpoints or conceptual papers, as long as they are based on strong arguments. The following topics shall be seen as some suggestions that the papers could be focused on (but they should not be seen as restrictions):

• convincing descriptions of how organizations as such learn, from any specific perspectives (or a few perspectives);

• examinations of previous work on organizational learning and how this could be interpreted in terms of the organization per se learns;

• case studies that shows that organizations can learn;

• discussions regarding when the organizational level of learning is appropriate and when the individual level is appropriate;

• should "organizational learning" be taken as a literal utterance, or "merely" as a metaphor.

Papers that refute the notion that organizations as such are capable of learning, and that the individual is the only possible entity that is capable of learning, are welcome. In order to publish such a paper, though, it must contain a convincing argumentation in support of the individual as the only learning unit as well as against those who argue that organizations as such can learn.

Please put “orglearning” in the title of the submission.

Please submit papers by September 1st, 2008 at:

Style guide and further journal information at:

If you have any questions about content or direction of your paper, please contact the Special Issue Editor: Anders Örtenblad, Halmstad University, Sweden

The Poetics and Politics of Reading

The Poetics and Politics of Reading: Studies in Honour of University Professors Linda Hutcheon and J. Edward Chamberlin

March 19-21, 2009 at The Centre for Comparative Literature, University of Toronto

Keynote Addresses: Professor Sander L. Gilman (Emory University) and Professor Emeritus Mario J. Valdés (University of Toronto)

As 2009 marks the 40th anniversary of the founding of the Centre for Comparative Literature at the University of Toronto, the 20th Annual International Graduate Colloquium will celebrate its longstanding place as a nexus of provocative thinkers on and influential theories of reading: its nature, its significance, its politics. Beginning with the watershed work of its founder, Northrop Frye, the Centre for Comparative Literature has been the birthplace of some of the most important contributions to the field of literary and cultural studies, particularly regarding the status of readers (who can read?), their place in the culture around them (by what terms can they read?), their relationships to texts (what can be read and how?) and their relationships to one another (how can they read the signs of another/an Other?). Over the years, these contributions have included now-classic works, such as Wolfgang Iser's The Act of Reading, Paul Ricoeur's The Rule of Metaphor and Fredric Jameson's The Political Unconscious, all
delivered as lecture series at the Centre.

For the past 25 years, the Centre for Comparative Literature has been home to two outstanding and highly-regarded scholars pursuing, in different ways, the same questions that have characterized the Centre from its inception. University Professors Linda Hutcheon and J. Edward Chamberlin have challenged scholars in all areas of the humanities to re-think the conditions, processes, functions and implications of reading and have articulated original and groundbreaking theories of its power in individual and cultural life. In order to honour the work
of Professors Chamberlin and Hutcheon as they retire from full-time teaching, to initiate a dialogue concerning the place of their ideas in the larger context of critical theories of reading, and to establish a firm theoretical base at the Centre for Comparative Literature from which to continue our proud tradition of both asking and addressing the most pressing new questions within the humanities and social sciences, we present the 2009 Conference: The Poetics and Politics of Reading.

Consider some of the following questions:

• What is the difference between a subject-agent and a reader? Is there a difference? How must a subject-agent both fashion and position him- or herself in order to become a reader? (See Chamberlin's Living Language and Dead Reckoning: Navigating Oral and Written Traditions, or
If This is Your Land, Where Are Your Stories?)

• What is a text and how does a reader approach it? What are the limits on what can be read? Must a text be recorded or written down in some way, or can it be a finite thing (such as an oral narrative), or an unstable and changing thing (such as a performance or another person)?
Can anything with semiotic properties (such as a home, a horse, or a series of cultural artifacts) be read, or is there something unique in the process of reading written literature?

(See Chamberlin's Horse: How the Horse Has Shaped Civilizations and If This Is Your Land, Where Are Your Stories?)

• What does reading do for the reader? Is there some sort of fundamental human need to read? What might it be? Does reading stabilize the Self, or destabilize the Self, or does the Self only
emerge in the first place as a consequence of reading? Can reading in new ways contribute to new self-understanding and new understanding of others? How?

(See Hutcheon's Irony's Edge, A Theory of Parody.)

• To what extent is it possible to read a text that is foreign to one's own experience, e.g., a text rooted in the experience of another time, another place, another gender, another sexuality, another class, etc.? What roles do power relations and social antagonism play in reading
this kind of text? Does this kind of reading concretize or destabilize power relations and social antagonisms, or does it do something else? What are the ethics of reading another’s text?

(See Hutcheon's Politics of Postmodernism, Poetics of Postmodernism; or Chamberlin's If This Is Your Land, Where Are Your Stories? or Come Back to Me My Language: Poetry and the West Indies)

• What is the distinction between observing and respecting alternative reading practices and orientalizing or exoticizing them? Can one learn to read the way readers in other cultures or socio-economic groups do?

(See Chamberlin's Horse: How the Horse Has Shaped Civilizations; Living Language and Dead Reckoning: Navigating Oral and Written Traditions)

• What is the relationship of reading practices to economic and cultural life? Does the former change as a consequence of the latter, or vice versa? Or is there a dialectical relationship, and what might that look like?

(See Hutcheon's Theory of Adaptation.)

• How can the study of aesthetic form connect to a larger picture of history and cultural life? How able is a reader to approach the study of form from a position of objectivity? Is this even desirable?

(See Hutcheon's Poetics of Postmodernism, especially on historiographic metafiction.)

Preference will be given to papers that explore these questions, and others related to them, while commenting on the contributions Professors Chamberlin and Hutcheon have made to scholarship in this area. Mention of their work is not required; however, we recommend
reading their works, to get a sense of the framework for the Conference and as an excellent guide to critical theories of reading and possible directions for future research and writing. Detailed bibliographies and biographies of Professors Chamberlin and Hutcheon are available at

Please submit 250-350 word abstracts to by September 15, 2008.

Include with your abstract:

Name and Affiliation

Email Address and Postal Address

Telephone Number

A/V Requirements

16th Annual Cross-Cultural Research in Information Systems Meeting

16th Annual Cross-Cultural Research in Information Systems Meeting
Sponsored by 3M
December 14th, 2008
Paris, France

Call for Papers


You are invited to submit papers addressing how culture, broadly defined, shapes the way Information Systems are designed, used by, or affect society. Finished papers, research-in-progress and panel proposals are sought for the 2008 SIG-CCRIS in Paris. Submissions will be double blind peer reviewed.

With a long tradition of congregating researchers interested in Cross-Cultural issues in IS, this meeting has been a good point of contact for those who are actively involved in the area or who would like to know a little more about what other researchers are doing in this area.

This year's keynote speech will be given by Dr. Dorothy Leidner, The Ferguson Professor of IS at Baylor University, on "Technology, Globalization and Humanity: Riding the Waves in Cross-Culture Research"

Important Dates

Submission Deadline: September 26, 2008
Notification of Acceptance: November 17, 2008
Final Paper Due: December 7, 2008

Submission Format

Papers may have up to 25 double-spaced pages including bibliography.
Panel proposals should include name and affiliation of all participants as well as a description of the proposed panel.
Electronic submission or either PDF or Word files are encouraged.
Submissions must be sent to Roberto Evaristo at

Logistical Details

This year the meeting will be on Sunday, December 14th from 12 noon to 5.30 pm. Further logistical details will be shared as they become available. Both paper submitting authors as well as other researchers are invited to participate. Participants will benefit from rich and focused interactions colleagues of similar interest. To ensure interaction quality, limited space will be available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Payment will be through the ICIS registration system. If you are not attending ICIS, payment will be accepted either in check payable to AIS, SIGCCRIS (please mail to address below), or -- for non-US researchers -- in cash at the convention location. Advance notice of intention of participating is recommended to ensure space availability.

Roberto Evaristo, Cross-Cultural Meeting Coordinator

Knowledge Management Program Office
3M Center, Building 0225-03-S-05
St Paul, MN 55144-1000

CSCW 2008 Workshop (W6): Virtual Worlds, Collaboration, and Workplace Productivity - call for papers

CSCW 2008 Workshop (W6): Virtual Worlds, Collaboration, and Workplace Productivity - Call for Participation

November 9, 2008 - San Diego, California, USA

Workshop Website:

Workshop Overview:

Following the recent and explosive success of virtual worlds such as World of Warcraft and Second Life, and the rising wave of research about virtual worlds, major efforts are underway in both the public and private sectors to develop collaborative systems built on them.

As virtual worlds continue their transition from mere entertainment to next generation collaborative technology, the time is ripe for interaction designers and CSCW researchers to take stock, both of the virtual worlds and their users themselves, as well as on the growing body of virtual world research and the challenges and opportunities it faces.

This workshop brings together an interdisciplinary group of virtual world researchers and interaction designers from industry and academia as well as decision makers from businesses who are evaluating the use of virtual worlds; we will discuss the state of the art of the virtual world research agenda as these worlds continue their transition to mainstream workplace technology.

Participants are to explore questions such as the following:

* What are the values of virtual worlds in business settings? How do we increase those values?

* How do games and virtual environments change workplace ecology, for better and for worse?

* How might ad hoc and persistent grouping practices in virtual worlds model productive workplace collaboration?

* How can game technologies and virtual worlds support and facilitate workplace interactions?

* How might game technologies and virtual worlds support collaborations that are distributed across continents, teams, and disciplinary approaches?

* Are existing theories of small- and large-group collaboration adequate for use in designing game technologies for workplace use, or do they need to be updated?

* Are existing qualitative and quantitative methods used in researching collaboration sufficient for the study of virtual worlds, or do they need to be updated?

* What relationships exist between measures of video game effectiveness (e.g., engagement, immersion, fun) and workplace software effectiveness (e.g., usability, performance, user satisfaction)?

The workshop will be a full day event and will be open to a maximum of 15-20 participants. Participants will be selected based on position papers to be no more than 4 pages using the ACM template that address workshop goals, reviewed by workshop organizers. In addition, we also encourage video submissions (provided via a URL) that describe a working system that can be

Important Dates:
* September 19, 2008: Submissions of position papers
* October 3, 2008: Notification of acceptance
* November 9, 2008: Workshop

Shaowen Bardzell, Indiana University
Steven L. Rohall, IBM TJ Watson Research
Wendy Ark, IBM Almaden Research
Jeffrey Bardzell, Indiana University
Melissa Cefkin, IBM Almaden Research
Li-Te Cheng, IBM TJ Watson Research
Jonathan Kaplan, Sun Microsystems Laboratories
Bonnie Nardi, University of California, Irvine
Nicole Yankelovich, Sun Microsystems Laboratories

Workshop contact and electronic submissions: Shaowen Bardzell (selu [at]

When Do You Check Your E-Mail?

Internet users in the US check their personal e-mail throughout the day, including at work.

Nearly one-quarter of Internet users surveyed in June 2008 for an AOL-sponsored survey by Beta Research Corporation said they were most likely to check their e-mail upon waking. But more than one-third said they checked throughout the day, and the rest of respondents said they checked at various times, including throughout the night.

More than seven out of 10 employed respondents also said they checked their personal e-mail at work—and nearly one-third said they did so more than three times a day.

Nearly 70% of respondents said they had multiple e-mail accounts.

It is no secret that a lot of what arrives in users' inboxes is spam, but much is legitimate marketing. More than three-quarters of online marketers in the US surveyed by the Direct Marketing Association in June 2008 said they used e-mail more than they did three years ago.

[for the full article with graphs and stats from click here]

PD4D 2008 Participatory Design for Development - Call for Papers and Participation

Participatory Design for Development 2008 Workshop (PD4D 2008)

to be held in conjunction with the Participatory Design Conference in Bloomington, Indiana
1st of October 2008

Call for Papers and Participation

About the Workshop
Participatory design within the context of developing countries is an emerging area of interest in the Participatory Design community. This workshop will provide a unique forum for participants to exchange their experiences, consider the different approaches needed in developing country's context, encourage new partnerships and learn from each others past difficulties and how these were solved.

It is hoped this workshop will foster dialogue between practitioners and academics in different disciplines (e.g. HCI, CSCW, CMC, International Development, Sociology, Psychology, Anthropology, Software Engineering, Ergonomics, Education, and Information Systems, among others) interested in the challenges presented by conducting PD in the developing world.

There are unique issues that arise within the context of a developing country that need to be considered when carrying out participatory design. These include:

* Power distance: this is the perceived status between the host communities and the designers.

* Cultural/language barriers: there are normally language and cultural barriers between the host communities and the visiting designers.

* Incompatibilities of PD techniques with host community values and communication codes.

* Uncertainty about appropriate methods/techniques when participant users and developers are from different national and organizational cultures

* Dispersed geographical distances mean that travelling costs are high and time zone differences make remote synchronous communications difficult.

* Low literacy levels: the host communities may have low literacy level thus hindering collaborative activities between them and the designers.

* Poor telecommunication infrastructure: this means that activities that could be followed-up from a distance or meaningful communication between the two dispersed groups may prove to be a challenge.

Please register via

Presenters will be invited to submit a 2 page proposal on their experience with PD in the developing world, or in similar settings within the developed world. Proposals should report on presenters' experience of PD and ideally touch on some of the issues identified in 'Topics'. Emphasis should be placed on the successful and challenging elements of working in a development context. Presentations will be followed by an interactive session where key themes will be identified by presenters and participants, who will work in groups to discuss lessons learnt and opportunities for successful PD. The workshop will close with a round-table session bringing together all the main points identified in the interactive session into a list of learning outcomes and challenges for PD in the developing world. articipatory design within the context of developing countries is an emerging area of interest in the Participatory Design community.

Submissions should follow the SIGCHI Conference Proceedings Format (

Key Dates
- 1st of September, 2008: Submission deadline
- 7h of September, 2008: Notification of Acceptance
- 15th of September, 2008: copies of accepted papers due.

Papers should be submitted to

Cecilia Oyugi, Jose Abdelnour Nocera and Lynne Dunckley,
Institute for Information Technology, Thames Valley University,
Wellington Street, Slough, SL1 1YG, United Kingdom
email: {cecilia.oyugi, jose.abdelnour-nocera, lynne.dunckley} at

Susan Dray
Dray & Associates
2007 Kenwood Parkway
Minneapolis, MN 55405 USA
+1 6123771980
Dray at

Program Committee
Andy Dearden, Sheffield Hallam University, UK
Heike Winschiers, Polytechnic of Namibia
Ann Light, Queen Mary University of London, UK
Rogerio DePaula, Intel, Brazil
Tim Waema, University of Nairobi, Kenya
Thomas Riisgaard Hansen, University of Aarhus, Denmark
Josh Underwood, London Knowledge Lab, UK
Zhengjie Liu, Dalian Maritime University, China
Philippe Palanque, University Paul Sabatier, France
Souleymane Camara, Thames Valley University, UK
Suzana Sukovic, University of Technology Sydney, Australia
Juan M. Fernandez, Unesco, Mexico
Helen Sharp, The Open University, UK