[Air-L] snide, cute, ignorant, surprising

Heidelberg, Chris Chris.Heidelberg at ssa.gov
Wed Dec 19 12:34:00 PST 2007


We had an ongoing thread a while ago about this issue. Lessig (2002,
2004) vividly discusses the history of how each new technological is
always greeted with fear and loathing by the established mediums and
their surrogates. One of the best examples of this can be found in the
late (yet great MPAA leader for other reasons - like fighting
censorship) Jack Valenti referred to the vcr as the tool of the devil to
paraphrase him in the Sony Betamax (1984) case.

Social networking may not be accepted by many old line types; however, I
have discovered that it will be accepted as serious research provided it
provides citations to real links, uses standard language whenever
possible (sometimes one cannot explain things in standard language
because of the impact of convergence and publishing times) and the fact
that printing times have been used reflection time on an issue. I am
sorry to say that I believe that those days are coming to an end
rapidly. I have found that social networking has brought together
disciplines in a way that has not been done since the days of ancient
Egypt, classic Greece, Alexandria, the early days of the trivium and the
quadrivium, and the early to mid-twentieth century. What no one wants to
discuss is the looming presence of money and how it has systematically
caused academia to divide along disciplinary lines which was counter to
the Egyptian and Babylonian model, the Academy model in Greece, the
Hellenistic model in Alexandria or the medieval/renaissance model(2006).
The reason is because industry has cleverly tied financing to graduates
for industry, and yet it does not receive mainstream attention. Why?

I wrote a traditional dissertation, but I also utilized digital video,
iPod audio, still photography, Internet interviews, phone interviews,
live video/audio interviews, follow-up phone interviews for
clarifications and Internet verification of all interviews. This can be
done with web tools and posted with blogs. I believe in the open sourced
and collaborative approaches advocated by Anderson (2006), Gee
(2004,2005); Jenkins (2006), Prensky (2001,2006); Tapscott & Williams
(2006) and Willinsky (2006) and others including McLuhan (1967,1968) who
advocated the use of electronic media.

I believe that if our goal is to spread scholarly knowledge then we must
be prepared to take our message to the masses in both scholarly language
and non-standard language. If we want people to love knowledge as we
purport that we do, we must be prepared to meet people where they are,
so that we can assist them in taking that curious academic journey to
formal learning. At the end of the day, knowledge is free, yet
expensive; and each of us must understand that all education begins with
communication (Heidelberg, 2007). This has been true from the beginning
of civilization and continues to be the case today (Pollard & Reid,
2006), so we as scholars have to stay true to our roots and still
communicate with the tools of convergence.

-----Original Message-----
From: air-l-bounces at listserv.aoir.org
[mailto:air-l-bounces at listserv.aoir.org] On Behalf Of Peter Timusk
Sent: Sunday, December 16, 2007 10:49 PM
To: air-l at listserv.aoir.org
Subject: Re: [Air-L] snide, cute, ignorant, surprising

I just read the article and note that youth use the internet for
different things. Sure kids in school can and will gladly play a simple
game like most friends. A mature student like myself may get out R and
make some histograms of fiends of friends sizes. How can you engage
students using facebook? Ok I have my lesson planned for the next time I
teach statistics and R.

I also note and this is true of a weekend piece ( in the Ottawa
Citizen) by a journalist writing about her retirement. She of course
slams Internet writing. She is a professional journalist she reasons the
Internet is hacks. Now Professor Wellman you focus on social networks
but I for one would say still focus on computer crime or labour issues
in computing and the fact that newspapers do not like the Internet has
to be exposed. While you see what you see in this article I see the
common Internet is bad message in the newspapers. I note newsprint
companies are down on the stock market at least one big Quebec company
is way down for a few years now. Paper is on the way out apparently.
Unless a newspaper is selling me the latest gadget they are negative on
the Internet because they feel they compete (IMHO). This is also why
some newspapers are so off with their web sites and have not got it
right. I have not seen a lot of articles in my daily paper about open
source for instance.

just some thoughts sorry for the poor email etiquette but I will now
read other replies.

Peter Timusk

On 16-Dec-07, at 4:47 PM, Barry Wellman wrote:

> The tone of Monica Hesse's Washington Post story is somewhat snide.
> Although I did enjoy some of her word-play: "celebrademic" danah 
> "uncapping" herself (altho note that the Post copyeditor re-capped her

> at the start of a para.) Frankly, "danah" uncapped has made 
> proofreading PITAs for me for years.
> What is ignorant is Ms Hesse being surprised that small circles cite 
> each other. This is true in many fields. There is a whole area of 
> bibliometrics devoted to this. Check out the work of Howard White or 
> Loet Leyesdorff, for example. Or, as usual, I have co-authored a paper

> on the subject -- its on my website.
> "Does Citation Reflect Social Structure? Longitudinal Evidence from 
> the 'Globenet' Interdisciplinary Reserach Group" JASIST, 1/04.
> What is surprising is that I was interviewed and quoted by Ms Hesse 
> and it was a much straighter piece of reporting:
> "An Unmanageable Circle of Friends: Social-Network Sites Inundate Us 
> with Connections, and that can be Alienating." Washington Post, August

> 26, 2007, p. M10.
> http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/08/24/
> AR2007082400481.html
>  Barry Wellman
> ______________________________________________________________________
> _
>   S.D. Clark Professor of Sociology, FRSC              NetLab Director
>   Centre for Urban & Community Studies           University of Toronto
>   455 Spadina Avenue          Room 418          Toronto Canada M5S 2G8
>   http://www.chass.utoronto.ca/~wellman            fax:+1-416-978-7162
>   Updating history:     http://chass.utoronto.ca/oldnew/cybertimes.php
>          Elvis wouldn't be singing "Return to Sender" these days
> ______________________________________________________________________
> _
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Peter Timusk B.Math(2002) BA (2006)
Tel: 001-613-729-8328
Community Informatics Practitioner
Email: ptimusk at sympatico.ca
Yahoo ID: crystal_computing
Skype ID: peter.timusk

Nothing I write is intended to be representative of my employer, or our
clients. Nor do I alone speak for my unions.

Feel free to learn more about me at www.crystalcomputing.net Computer
ethics studies at www.webpagex.org blogs
http://logbook.crystalcomputing.net <- computers
http://notebook.webpagex.org <- school work

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