This is where my digital life comes together
I'm a journalism academic at the University of Wollongong. My interests include: convergent journalism, literary journalism, myth & media, storytelling, art & image and social media
I am completing a thesis about apocalyptic narratives, popular culture and news media
This site assembles my Twitter feed and Delicious bookmarks which I sometimes comment on tag and add to.
A powerful photograph that apparently shows two young boys in Iraq expressing their solidarity with the people of Boston has gone viral this week. Posted online Tuesday by Facebook group “America Loves Iraq”, the photo is said to have been taken by Muslim Peacemaker Teams (MPT), an international organization of peace activists working in Iraq. Kevin Gosztola, of progressive news blogging site Firedoglake, was one of the first to surface the image online. (via Children In Iraq ‘Mourn With Boston’ (PHOTOS))
In the U.S., 56 percent of terrorist attacks and plots have been perpetrated by right-wing extremists, 30 percent by eco-terrorists and 12 percent by Islamic extremists. The Southern Poverty Law Center recently reported the highest number of extremist hate groups ever recorded in U.S. history, with the sharp rise attributed to massive growths in white supremacist, anti-immigrant and radical anti-government groups. Anti-Muslim hate groups have also increased by 300 percent. No one denies that radicalized Muslim violence is a problem, as evidenced by Nidal Hassan Malik, the unhinged Army major who killed 13 soldiers at Fort Hood and injured 31, and Faisal Shahzad, the failed Times Square bomber. (via I am not the Tsarnaevs - Salon.com)
One week ago — at approximately 2:50 p.m. on Monday — the first of two bombs exploded near the finish line of the Boston Marathon. This image, taken from the NBC broadcast of the race, shows the flash of the explosion and the final split-second of normalcy before the area turned into what witnesses described as a war zone. Here are the stories of the runners, spectators and others seen in this image. (via A Moment From the Boston Marathon, Audio and Stories - Interactive Feature - NYTimes.com)
Yet it’s also symptomatic of a tendency, in the media and beyond it, to privilege caricatures over characters. Particularly when we have so much access to people’s interior lives through social media — this Twitter feed seems to be Dzhokar’s, and it is revealing — we have new license to think beyond categories (and metaphors, and stereotypes). We have new ways to bolster our categories — “Muslim,” “Chechen,” “Causasian” — with the many caveats they deserve. The Tsarnaev brothers may have been Muslim, and that circumstance may have, in part, motivated them in their actions on Monday. They may have been Chechen. They may have been male. But that was not all they were. Their lives were like all of ours: full of small incongruities that build and blend to drive us in different directions. Another thing we think we know about the brothers is that they lived in the middle of one of America’s richest cities, near a gas station. And a retirement home. And an auto-body shop. And a really good cafe that serves homemade ice cream. As a place it is tranquil and gritty, urban and not at all. It is messy and busy and real.
HUNDREDS of people have marched through central Sydney demanding an end to police brutality and an independent investigation into allegations of excessive force at the recent Mardi Gras. Politicians and gay rights activists have been calling for an independent inquiry into the actions of police at Saturday’s Mardi Gras after a video emerged showing a handcuffed 18-year-old, Jamie Jackson, being thrown to the ground by an officer at the festival. (via Hundreds march against ‘police brutality’ at last week’s Mardi Gras | thetelegraph.com.au)
The Digital Media and Learning Research Hub’s mission is to advance research in the service of a more equitable, participatory, and effective ecosystem of learning keyed to the digital and networked era. Located at the system-wide University of California Humanities Research Institute at UC Irvine, we are an international research center that is committed to promoting compelling research collaborations about best participatory learning practices, applications, programs and their assessments that engage digital media. We support emerging research on digital media and learning through two interdisciplinary research networks — Connected Learning and Youth and Participatory Politics — and the Connecting Youth Project. We also host an annual conference, organize a week-long summer institute for junior scholars, and bring together researchers, practitioners, policymakers, industry leaders and others working on related projects. Our collaborative blog and curated set of free and open resources — DML Central — serves as a forum for spreading knowledge, insights, data, practices, thought leadership, and dialogue in and across the digital media and learning field.