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Book Review – “Hacking: Digital Media and Technological Determinism”

On Friday afternoon, during my third attempt to locate Steven Weber’s book "The Success of Open Source" at Lauinger Library, I scanned the spines of several hundred books, hoping to find it misshelved nearby. Instead, I stumbled across Tim Jordan’s "Hacking: Digital Media and Technological Determinism," which has turned out to be the most delightful read I’ve come across since I began working on my thesis.

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Why We Blog (Revisited) & Our Holiday Hiatus

Our editorial team will be wrapping up our Fall issue next week, but for our bloggers the holiday break starts today. We’ll be back in early January. Before I retreat to the editor’s corner, though, I thought I’d wrap up our semester in a pretty little bow. I swear I didn’t plan this.

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Weekly Roundup: Hermann Hesse, Tim O’Reilly, and Barack Obama walk into a bar…

Maybe I’m still feeling the Tryptophan, but my favorite posts this week appear to be lacking a coherent theme, so I’m going to revert to simple bullet points. Just because they’re random, though, don’t assume they aren’t utterly fascinating.

Here at gnovis

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Digital Killed the Television Star


Is TV soon going to become another nostalgic relic of our technological past like radio stars or record players?

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Book Review – “The Public Domain: Enclosing the Commons of the Mind”

If you’re familiar with the work of Lawrence Lessig, you’ll recognize the formula James Boyle follows in his latest book, "The Public Domain: Enclosing the Commons of the Mind". It goes something like this:

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Censor them with Content

Internet Censorship in Singapore
Imagine the following scenario: You are a policy maker for a country with questionable leadership, and an even more questionable economy. A new technology called the Internet has emerged which might answer some of your economic concerns, but you are concerned about the unintended consequences of adopting a technology that might undermine your county’s sense of morality, not to mention nationalism.

This problem is not new, you saw the same threats emerged out of other media sources once they were able to syndicate content from across the world. But with newspaper, television and radio, the number of broadcasters was small enough that the appropriateness of content could be regulated. With the Internet, however, every media consumer is also a producer.

With a population of less than 5 million, these were the concerns of the Singaporean government when it implemented a complicated array of Internet censorship practices, but these concerns could equally be applied to the United States as well. The anxiety of nation-states about the border/culture/economically-agnostic nature of information on the Internet, and the desire to control information must always compete with the thick ideological armor with which we protect our digital free speech. The design of our Internet infrastructure is so imbued with the ideology of free speech that unrestricted access to information seems preordained for anyone who chooses to plug-in.

So how do you censor the individual? You launch MySpace. Continue reading

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