Date archives "August 2009"

The Power shift at Wikipedia and its deterrent effect on participation

Via Slashdot: “The Guardian reports that a study by Ed H Chi demonstrates that the character of Wikipedia has changed significantly since Wikipedia’s first burst of activity between 2004 and 2007. While the encyclopedia is still growing overall, the number of articles being added has reduced from an average of 2,200 a day in July… Continue reading

The meltdown of the state under neoliberalism through New Public Management

Essay: The Rise and Demise of the New Public Management. By Wolfgang Drechsler (University of Tartu and Tallinn University of Technology, Estonia), 2005 From 2005, but still a crucial critique of the neoliberal approaches to the state. Summary: “Within the public sphere, the most important reform movement of the last quarter of a century has… Continue reading

Book of the Week (2): Direct action and direct democracy

Book: David Graeber. Direct Action, an Ethnography. AK Press, 2009 In this second excerpt of David Graeber’s new book and analysis of the alterglobalization movement, he focuses, in chapter 5, on the linkage between direct action and direct democracy. The excerpt focuses on the evolution between the feminist moment to the emergence, ‘seemingly out of… Continue reading

From corporate publishing, via self-publishing, to cloud publishing

Book Oven is constructing tools and processes for the collective and independent production of books. In a thoughtful, but really hard to summarize blog entry, the concept of self-publishing is rejected, in favour of ‘cloud publishing’. Read the whole article here. Just the definition: “Cloud-publishing will provide the tools to allow groups of people to… Continue reading

A new book on Independent Media in Chinese Societies

Via Iam-Chong Ip: “Hong Kong In-media is a non-profit organization advocating blogger journalism and media activism in Hong Kong. Recently we’ve published a book titled Info-Rhizome: Report on Independent Media in the Chinese-speaking World. This book is about the recent development of independent media (including small activist media, community radio, blogger, media activist, etc) in… Continue reading

Should a free RSS Cloud replace Twitter?

Twitter — or, rather, the idea of a pervasive, public short messaging network — could be too important to be left under one entity’s control. The people behind the OpenMicroBlogging (OMB) movement say it’s time for the 140-character, publicly-subscribable format pioneered by Twitter to become an open standard, in part because, as last week’s attack… Continue reading

Book of the Week: David Graeber’s Ethnography of Direct Action

The standard right-wing line, since at least the 1790s, had always been that revolutionary dreams were dangerous precisely because they were utopian: they ignored the real complexity of social life, tradition, authority, and human nature, and dreamed of reshaping the world according to some abstract ideal. By the 1990s, the places had been completely reversed…. Continue reading

The emergent tradition of participatory research in the social sciences

Participatory Perspectives on Counselling Research. By DAVID HILES: Summary of paper presented at NCCR Conference, Newport, November 22, 2008. The above essay by David Hiles has great introductory material on participatory methods of inquiry. First, David Hiles proposes three types of knowing: Positivist Knowledge: (present-at-hand), i.e. “Getting about in “the world”, measurement, size, weight, shape,… Continue reading

Pat Mooney on Nanotechnology and the Enclosure of the Chemical Elements

This is the rough transcript, still including some typos, of a presentation at the Crottorf Consultations on the Commons, transcribed by Silke Helfrich. Pat Mooney (ETC Group): “I first came across on biotechnologies in the 70th. In that time we saw, that 3 things were coming together. We saw the genetic erosion of crop species… Continue reading

Elisabeth Husserl on Sufficiency vs. Abundance: together we have everything

I met Elisabeth Husserl, a descendent of the famous philosopher and extraordinary coach for personal sustainability, in the Bay Area last year. She has started her own website and reports on a discussion between two very important concepts: sufficiency vs. abundance. Elisabeth: “Last Wednesday evening I had the privilege of attending the opening San Francisco… Continue reading

Peter Bihr on the politics of the German Pirate Party

Interesting commentary which I’m reproducing in full and which transcend the specific German situation. Peter Bihr: “Lots of discussions about the Pirate Party (PP) lately, and their role in German politics. With federal elections coming up in late September and some very salient web issues like data retention and planned legislation to block (supposed) child… Continue reading