Donate Your Used Phones for Community Media Project!

Hey everyone,

Alexa and I are working on a campaign to get older smartphones from people to use as cameras and editing tools in Sherman Indian High School. I know it can be tempting to sell them and get a little money in your pocket, but I encourage you to think about what could be done with it in it’s next life.

Sherman Indian High School is a boarding school for Native American students from all over the U.S. It used to be a government run boarding school used for assimilation of native peoples, but today it is run by and for indigenous people.

Indigitize Sherman High 2-page-001

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America Judge holds Argentina in contempt

An interesting story I’ve been following about Argentina and American hedge fund executives.

http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2014/09/29/judge-finds-argentina-in-contempt-in-bond-case/?_php=true&_type=blogs&_r=0

Participatory Gentrification-mapping site

Hi all, was just talking with a friend of mine (also recent Pomona graduate) who talked about his changing neighborhood in Boyle Heights right by downtown LA. We did a little research and found a really interesting site that encourages people to participate by observing the gentrification processes around them. Is this the sort of media we can expect from NSMs?

Détournement confronting conventions

I found an article that includes humorous comic propaganda to educate on the ideas and creations in the realm of détournement. I hope these images and blurbs spark conversation; I myself am still reading the article and studying my thoughts on the topic. Post your reactions!

Screen Shot 2014-09-29 at 12.02.57 PM Détournement leads to discovering new aspects and areas of talent, while confronting all social and legal conventions. It served as a cultural weapon in the conversation of class struggle. Détournement it is “a real means of proletarian artistic education, the first step toward a literary communism.” Ideas can be multiplied endlessly at will.

“[...] such parodistic methods have often been used to obtain comical effects. but such humor is the result of contradictions within a condition whose existence is taken for granted. since the world of literature seems to us almost as distant as the stone age, such contradictions don’t make us laugh. it is thus necessary to envisage a parodic-serious stage where the accumulation of detourned elements, far from aiming to arouse indignation or laughter by alluding to some original work, will express our indifference toward a meaningless and forgotten original, and concern itself with rendering a certain sublimity.”

Screen Shot 2014-09-29 at 11.59.57 AM

(Source:http://kaganof.com/kagablog/2008/02/24/a-user’s-guide-to-detournement1/)

Climate change campaign

I found an interesting campaign about climate change which is called “climate witness” held by WWF. This project is not like a big march or one-shot campaign but an internet based and more long-term activity. On “Climate witness” web page, there are photos, movies and words of witnesses of global warming from all over the world. They speak about what is happening because of the global warming for people who cannot get how global warming is a serious problem.

It’s going to be easy and effective campaign if it becomes well known but since it is not a showy one, it is not so known by everyone which I guess there are some problems to solve to make it significant.

http://wwf.panda.org/about_our_earth/aboutcc/problems/people_at_risk/personal_stories/about_cw/

Activist Media and Sam Pepper

Lievrouw quotes Arjun Appadurai saying, “online activists and artists create divers ‘mediascapes’ or ‘cartographies’ where they can ‘congregate’ and share minority or marginalized views.” I recognize that he tried to situate his argument within the context of history of new media, however, I saw so many parallels to this description of new media in a YouTube campaign going on today. YouTube has become a space for art, discussion and community engagement. It has also become a space for marginalized communities to organize. For example, the disabled community is often silenced in mainstream media. Additionally, it can be difficult for disabled individuals to organize in person because of differing access needs. YouTube and social media provide a space for disabled individuals to “congregate.”

Recently, British YouTuber, Sam Pepper, has come under fire for his sexist and objectifying treatment of women in videos. In response, many other YouTubers have organized a campaign to get him removed from YouTube. While his account is still active, he was dropped by his representative and many of his videos were removed from YouTube for violating the terms of use. The movement to get him removed from YouTube was lead by YouTube celebrities like Laci Green and The Vlog Brothers who serve as both content creators and social critics. I think this is a really good example of media providing a space for organizing and discussion. As a former vlogger myself, I always felt like YouTube was a safe space (I realize now how ridiculous that sounds) and it furiates me that people like Sam Pepper would use it as a space to perpetuate sexual violence. However, I think the fact that YouTubers have been able to use the space as a forum for discussions about sexual violence following the event speaks to the importance and value in having a media space dedicated to individual creators of content to organize together.

Lievrouw on Alt/Activist New Media

With the exception of a few moments in the discussion of NSMs (in relation to class status being irrelevant for movement solidarity) Lievrouw’s Ch. 2 has been my favorite reading of ours so far. I think this is because it made a light bulb sort of go off in my head…

Since I was little I have known that I have wanted to be an investigative journalist. I love exploring, listening to people, and most of all, the idea of catalyzing change in a greater community. However, I am above all an artist and over the last few years have moved more toward making work inspired by the Dadaist and Situationist + contemporary conceptual/social art practices. I loved how Lievrouw approached Dadaist and Situationist theory within the context of social movements, and especially the idea of art as activism in a stylistic sense (and talking about dominant ideologies encoded in language and visual signifiers etc). Maybe I don’t have to be a journalist or an activist or an artist. Maybe I can be all at once.

Boyz In The Hood

I saw Boyz In The Hood for the first time in my US History class in high school. It is a film that has resonated with me ever since. In the film, Furious tells Ricky and Dough about gentrification. He explains how people from outside the neighborhood are bringing down the property value. I learned about gentrification for the first time through watching this film in high school. I had remembered this scene and went back to re-watch it for this project. The first time I watched the film, this scene seemed to flow. It didn’t stand out as different or particularly important. However, in watching it again I am questioning who this film is intended for and more specifically, who this scene was intended to teach. Furious teaches Ricky and Dough in the film, but now as a viewer, it seems as though Furious is actually trying to teach the viewers, specifically viewers who are outside their community. To me, it seems as though he is acknowledging the ways in which his community is misrepresented and trying to dispel that representation for the viewer. We’ve talked about the importance of making content by a community and for that same community (ex: Native American cinema). What is the value of making content by one community as a teaching mechanism for another community?

The Telephone Cycle

I have just begun to do research for my project with Genna. We are trying to collect used/old cell phones, specifically newer models with cameras, to give to the students at Sherman Indian High School for their video workshops. I began researching to find similar activist projects and have not come across a project that is as specific as ours. There are A LOT of recycling/refurbishing projects out there that you can find online. Some of these projects just rely on the funds gained from recycling phones while others actually use the phones for some cause. I will provide some links below of what I have found.

But while reading through some of these websites I have also read a lot about the environmental effect of cell phones. I guess in the back of my mind I knew that it must not be a good thing for these phones to end up in landfills, but since that is something I am not confronted with everyday it is not something that I have actually put into perspective.

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Their truth is just as powerful as yours

When i talked with Tim about our topic “War and media”,  his one sentence left me a deep impression—“ Their truth is just as powerful as yours”.  This sentence is really easy to understand, but hard for us to practice.

When we judge a lot of things, we will easily put ourselves at the dominant place and then start analyzing them, which sometimes cause us chosen the wrong side. For example, in some area of my province, people eat dogs as a tradition for a long time but couple months ago, some people began blame them for eating dogs. When the media reported about this news, they also put some cute and innocent doggie images under the article. Therefore, after people, who had dogs as their pet, learned about this news, they soon started criticizing

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