Recent news from the Center for Civic Media

Recent news from the Center for Civic Media

Citizens Rising - Liveblog

Live notes from the Citizens Rising event at MIT on Friday, Sept 19, 2014.

Introduction

Daniel Miller opens. Next, Daniel Wong speaks. He worked as a designer in 2009. Bad news about the economy and the government weighed on him. His sister introduced him to Lessig's work and he got involved with Rootstrikers, attended meetings, led meetings. But then he got a new job, and activism fell by the wayside, until he came across an article on Gilens's work suggesting that the US government operates as an oligarchy. He introduces Martin Gilens.

Martin Gilens

Gilens opens by showing us "the most unsettling line in American politics." He continues to explain that the near-horizontal slope of the line is the significant part. It represents the probability of a policy to be adopted as a function of how popular it is with the American people. The most popular policies are virtually no more likely than the least popular. His results suggest that the views of Americans have very little influence on US policy.

Talking the Talk: Communication Styles for Diversity at AlterConf


Photo by jordesign

The first AlterConf Boston hosted a mix of techies, gamers, and journalists to discuss diversity in these communities. As a self-identified communication-nerd, I was excited for Shauna Gordon-McKeon's "Talking the Talk" presentation on the role of different communication styles in encouraging diversity inclusion. These notes are from her talk.

Gordon-McKeon wants to dispel the myth that arguing is the road to truth, that truth = people + talking - emotions + data. She suggests memorizing stock phrases so they're like second nature when you need them. For a deeper analysis of communication, she suggests the work of Dr. Deborah Tannen.

How To Party Online

How do you party with a group of people across four continents? As a trustee of Awesome Knowledge, I'm looking for great ways to celebrate our community and congratulate our grantees. Every month or two, we give $1000 to an awesome project that spreads knowledge (learn more, and unlike most Awesome Foundations, we're a distributed group who have no shared geography. Most chapters conclude each grant cycle with a party, where a wide community is invited to celebrate as the grantee receives a big cheque or bag of money. After weeks of grant reviews and hard decisions, it's this party that often keeps the foundation Awesome.

Awesome Knowledge can't easily party in one place, so we're looking for ways to celebrate online.

Zuckerman and Center for Civic Media to be given Lewis Mumford Award

We're honored to hear from Dan Whittet that Architects/Designers/Planners for Social Responsibility have awarded our Center and director Ethan Zuckerman with a Lewis Mumford Award, specifically the Peace Award, for our work in global communications. ADPSR's press release:

Contact: Dan Whittet, 702 755 0240 Dan@ADPSR.ORG or Franziska Amacher fran@amacher- associates.net 617 354 8707.

Three organizations to be honored with Architects, Designers and Planners’ (ADPSR.org) 2014 Lewis Mumford Awards Awards to be presented at Boston Greenfest on Aug 16, 2014

“Designing a better world involves more than bricks and mortar”

http://www.bostongreenfest.org/Mumford.html

ADPSR recognizes social activists nationally for innovative work

The winners of its 20th annual Lewis Mumford Awards for outstanding contributions in areas that embrace ADPSR’s mission of world peace, protection of the environment, and socially responsible development are:

Form Builders for Mobile Data Collection

Over the last few months Civic has been developing a form builder for mobile data collection campaigns. The form builder is one component of Promise Tracker, a project we’ve been working on over the last year with the goal of creating a set of tools and processes that allow a community to identify issues they want to track, design and deploy mobile data collection campaigns around those issues, and strategically leverage data for advocacy. For background on the project, read Ethan’s post about Promise Tracker and Monitorial Citizenship and a post about our initial design workshops.

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