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The Conversation #65 — Rebecca Solnit

There’s a lot of beau­ti­ful things. And I think if there’s one thing I’m most deeply dis­qui­et about it’s…power. Why are we doing almost noth­ing about cli­mate change? It’s because despite the fact that most peo­ple on earth and many gov­ern­ment on Earth do, the oil cor­po­ra­tions and the gov­ern­ments most close­ly allied to the oil cor­po­ra­tions, notably ours, don’t want to do any­thing.

…And the Disability Revolution Will be Tweeted

I do dis­abil­i­ty and sex­u­al­i­ty edu­ca­tion. And activism and advo­ca­cy around sex­u­al­i­ty and dis­abil­i­ty issues, and repro­duc­tive health issues. And I want to teach the world that peo­ple with dis­abil­i­ties have the right and abil­i­ty to give and receive plea­sure.

Rashad Robinson on Interventions for Institutions

I want to inject a lit­tle cul­ture into this con­ver­sa­tion. And as we talk about the rea­sons that we make inter­ven­tions in this work, the rea­son why we advo­cate for truth in the media, and the rea­son why orga­ni­za­tions like mine do that work is for our com­mu­ni­ty, for the folks that we rep­re­sent.

Big Data Bodies: Machines and Algorithms in the World

I’m inter­est­ed in data and dis­crim­i­na­tion, in the things that have come to make us unique­ly who we are, how we look, where we are from, our per­son­al and demo­graph­ic iden­ti­ties, what lan­guages we speak. These things are effec­tive­ly incom­pre­hen­si­ble to machines. What is gen­er­al­ly cel­e­brat­ed as human diver­si­ty and expe­ri­ence is trans­formed by machine read­ing into some­thing absurd, some­thing that marks us as dif­fer­ent.

Define American

The real­i­ty is we have been so busy call­ing peo­ple names, obsess­ing over bor­ders and walls, and spread­ing mis­in­for­ma­tion that we haven’t even asked hard ques­tions like why do peo­ple move? What does US for­eign pol­i­cy and US trade agree­ments have to do with migra­tion pat­terns? Remember when those chil­dren start­ed walk­ing from Central America to here, and CBS News and a lot of orga­ni­za­tions called them ille­gal immi­grant” chil­dren instead of call­ing them the refugees that they are? What did we do to Nicaragua, El Salvador, and Guatemala so that their coun­tries got so vio­lent that they have to come here? Who start­ed the drug war? What did NAFTA do not only to the United States but to Mexicans, right?

The (Nonviolent) Struggle is Real

Behind-the-scenes plan­ning is often over­looked by observers and by the media because it’s what the cam­eras often can’t cap­ture. I’ve wit­nessed it for fif­teen years at the Albert Einstein Institution. This qui­et capacity-building and struc­tur­al work. The plan­ning and prepa­ra­tions that make move­ments more effec­tive.

The Things of the Internet
Reflections on Object Culture and Internet Culture

The Internet meme frame­work is a use­ful way to under­stand a cer­tain range of object pro­duc­tion, a cer­tain sort of infor­mal pro­duc­tion that com­bines net­worked modes of pro­duc­tion sim­i­lar to shanzhai or the hat print­ing, with the glob­al reach of the Internet and glob­al ship­ping ser­vices as well. The abil­i­ty to move bits and atoms with just as much ease and effi­cien­cy.

Forbidden Research Welcome and Introduction: Cory Doctorow

At that moment when every­body is sud­den­ly car­ing about this stuff, that’s the moment at which nihilism can be avert­ed. It’s the moment in which nihilism must be avert­ed if you’re going to make a change. Peak indif­fer­ence is the moment when you stop con­vinc­ing peo­ple to care about an issue, and start con­vinc­ing them to do some­thing about it.

The Conversation #15 — Cameron Whitten

Any time that you lessen lev­els of dis­par­i­ty you’re going to have more progress. And you can’t look at it as an own indi­vid­ual term. Progress in your own life, progress in tech­nol­o­gy. But I believe that you have to look at progress through the con­nec­tion of every­thing. That’s what sus­tain­abil­i­ty is real­ly about. It’s about the rela­tion­ship of our econ­o­my, of social jus­tice, the qual­i­ty of life of peo­ple, and then the last part is the envi­ron­ment.

An Xiao Mina at Biased Data

When we think about net­work graphs and we talk about how the net­work effects that make up an impor­tant part of how social move­ments and how infor­ma­tion is dis­trib­uted online, there’s this assump­tion in those visu­al­iza­tions that every node in that net­work is equal. But very often, and you can slice data in many dif­fer­ent way, the lan­guages that we speak actu­al­ly lim­it the net­works that we have access to and that we’re inter­act­ing with.

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