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MIT Center for Civic Media
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The MIT Center for Civic Media creates and deploys tools to fill information needs of communities.
The MIT Center for Civic Media creates and deploys tools to fill information needs of communities.

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"We were interested in seeing what videos were popular in different countries, and especially, what videos were popular in more than one country. For the past six months, we've gathered data from YouTube to understand What We Watch. The videos we feature are videos that appear on YouTube's Trends dashboard. These are the videos trending in any of 61 countries - they are not necessarily the most popular of all time, or even most popular that month, but they are receiving a lot of attention in a short period of time. (Gilad Lotan's explanation of trending topics on Twitter is useful for understanding that distinction.)"

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"I grew up in the capital of Uzbekistan, Tashkent and our family was lucky to be within the small percent of the population owning a computer with internet access. At that point I was about ten and my digital literacy was limited to being able to create my own email box."

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RSVP required: http://civic.mit.edu/event/civic-media-lunch-annette-kim-sidewalk-rights-in-vietnam

Maps both conceal and reveal. City planning maps continue to privilege built form and an idealized public with assumed spatial practices. Annette discusses the experimental maps of her research group SLAB that analyze ubiquitous and overlooked urban phenomena such as how street vendors negotiate sidewalk space in Ho Chi Minh City and how 2 million working class people live in bomb shelter apartments in Beijing. She will brainstorm how an art exhibit of her work that will show in HCMC in January might be a venue for social discourse in a governance system like Vietnam.

Annette M. Kim is associate professor in MIT's Department of Urban Studies and Planning. She directs SLAB which is developing methods of spatial ethnography and critical cartography in order to re-conceptualize urban space and find more inclusive and humane ways to design and govern the 21st century city.

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RSVP required at http://civic.mit.edu/event/civic-media-lunch-nassim-jafarinaimi

Participatory media and democracy are both concerned with the relationships possible between people: democracy as a mode of associated living is identified by the quality and purpose of interactions between people; participatory media find their purpose in the value of democracy as they mediate relations among people. So we might ask, can we inquire into democracy by examining the social relations made possible by participatory media? And can we draw on plural conceptions of democracy to critically examine patterns of social interaction that emerge around these products? In this talk, I will address the above questions, presenting instances of participatory media and examining the kinds of relationships that they promote/thwart.

Nassim JafariNaimi is an Assistant Professor in the Digital Media Program at Georgia Tech. Her research interest is in the ethical and political implications of emerging technologies. More specifically, she examines the experiential and participatory dimensions of participatory media and their relationship to establishing and supporting democratic forms of social interaction. Her research spans both theoretical inquiry and experimental design, situated at the intersection of Design, the Humanities, and Human Computer Interaction. Nassim JafariNaimi received her PhD in Design from Carnegie Mellon University and holds an MS in Information Design and Technology from Georgia Tech.

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Civic technologist Rahul Bhargava: "One of the most exciting findings for us was that everyone we spoke to who participated in creating the mural said that even though they had never designed an infographic before, they now think they could create their own infographic with other information."

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"Last week, Mark Simpkins wrote a blog post about how hard it is to know what to do if we want to create change. "When do I create a pledge? When do I contact my MP? When do I take to the streets?" he asks. "How do we move from someone who cares about an issue to taking action that will be genuinely meaningful? Might search or lists help people decide what to do?"

This blog post is my response to Mark."

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Civic's Rahul Bhargava: "The creative act of telling an information-based story offers everyone the best way to understand the affordances of various visualization tools, in addition to making them more aware consumers of this new 'visual grammar'. So how do you do this? What kind of fun activities can we do with people help them work with and present information?"

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"The Internet held out hope for a more connected, cosmopolitan world. You argue it hasn’t lived up to that promise. Why now?"

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Ever wonder how to draw an Ethan Zuckerman nyan cat? Have Lorrie LeJeune teach you, starting around the 9:00 mark.

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"Regardless of how you feel about pick-up artists and amateur authors who wish to spread that gospel, this campaign raises interesting questions for a wide range of social sites, and crowdfunding in general."
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