Raising Awareness of Social Media for Positive Social Change

My colleagues and I involved with the World Internet Project (WIP) are looking for some inspiring initiatives in the use of the internet and social media for effecting positive social change. A thesis by Ms Emilia Askari in the College of Education at Michigan State University alerted me to this potential, and discussions within WIP … Continue reading Raising Awareness of Social Media for Positive Social Change

A Message to the Russian People from Ukraine

[The following is an email message on 1 March 2022 from a colleague in Ukraine, which she received from a former doctoral student now living in Kyiv. While English is not the writer's first language, I'll post this with very little editing to convey its more personal experience of being in Ukraine during the 2022 … Continue reading A Message to the Russian People from Ukraine

History Lessons: 250 Years of the IT Industry in Britain

Question Time Panel at 'Learning from History', BCS, 17 February 2022 The Archives of IT (AIT) held a two-hour seminar on 17 February 2022 in collaboration with the British Computer Society (BCS) and the Computer Conservation Society (CCS). It was entitled ‘Learning from History: Reflections on the past and future of the British IT Industry’. … Continue reading History Lessons: 250 Years of the IT Industry in Britain

Problems with British Broadcasting – Not Just the BBC

There are serious problems with broadcast news in the UK, reflecting trends in public communication across other nations, that merit far more discussion and more systematic research. In many respects, the coverage of ‘partygate’ and new developments around the BBC License Fee highlight these issues, but could also narrow the discussion if focused only on … Continue reading Problems with British Broadcasting – Not Just the BBC

Hobbesian World of TV News in Britain

The Hobbesian World of Broadcast TV News in Britain As an American, I often find broadcast TV news in Britain to be completely out of character with my expectations. For example, as I would expect, BBC World Service is almost always polite, civilized, correct, and informative, while also entertaining. In contrast, all too often, BBC … Continue reading Hobbesian World of TV News in Britain

Private Emails Are Not (Yet) a Thought Crime

Private Emails? A Personal Perspective on Politicizing Norms of Communication In Orwell’s 1984, Winston Smith opens himself up to accusations of thought crimes for walking onto a street with a shop where he could buy pen and paper. In 2021, politicians and even the UK’s Information Commissioner wonder if ministers are guilty of some criminal … Continue reading Private Emails Are Not (Yet) a Thought Crime

Reading and Endorsing ‘Elements of Style’

Reposting from 2018 Looking into one of my College’s hallway recycling bins, as one does, I found a fourth edition paperback of Strunk and White’s The Elements of Style. Arguably, for my generation, as Strunk died the year before I was born, this has been one of the most useful and inspiring books for any … Continue reading Reading and Endorsing ‘Elements of Style’

COVID-19 Balancing Acts

COVID-19 Balancing Acts  The press has fostered growing recognition of the balance that politicians must strike between public health and the economy. This is important, but more attention needs to be focused on the balancing acts of individuals – the public at large. Each individual needs to juggle multiple pressures in making choices about staying … Continue reading COVID-19 Balancing Acts

Libraries without Buildings

What is a library if the building is closed? One response to the coronavirus pandemic has been the closing of libraries around the world. In light of these closures, Don Means - @donmeans - of Gigbit Libraries (GLN) , has been holding weekly video conferences or Webinars on ‘What is a library if the building is closed?’, … Continue reading Libraries without Buildings

Poster-first Presentations: The Rise of Poster Sessions on Academic Research

Times have changed. In the early years of my career as an academic, the poster session used to be sort of a second class offer for presenting at an academic conference. That is no longer the case. Newer generations of academics are trained and attuned to creating posters and infographics to explain and communicate their … Continue reading Poster-first Presentations: The Rise of Poster Sessions on Academic Research