[Air-L] Re studying mobiles in Myanmar

Akina (Mikamki) Koh akinamikami at gmail.com
Tue Jul 22 16:58:05 PDT 2014

Dear Rich and everyone,

In addition to all the other great suggestions, there is also:

*Slater, Don (2013) New Media, Development and Globalization, Cambridge,
UK; Malden, MA: Polity Press.*

You may be particularly interested in the section on pp. 73-80 about an
empirically-informed account of how mobile phones are being appropriated in
Ghana, and how it differs to the ways in which the internet is being
localised there.

Description of the book: "New media, development and globalization are the
key terms through which the future is being imagined and performed in
governance, development initiatives and public and political discourse. Yet
these authoritative terms have arisen within particular cultural and
ideological contexts. In using them, we risk promoting over-generalized and
seemingly unchallengeable frameworks for action and knowledge production
which can blind us to the complex global patterns and promise of social

This compelling book forces us to look at these terms afresh. Drawing on
more than ten years of ethnographic fieldwork in Latin America, West Africa
and South Asia, Don Slater seeks to challenge these terms as voicing
specific northern narratives rather than universal truths, and to see them
from the perspective of southern people and communities who are equally
concerned to understand new machines for communication, new models of
social change and new maps of social connection. The central question the
book poses is: how we can democratize the ways we think and practise new
media, development and globalization, opening these terms to dialogue and
challenge within North-South relations?

If not already, Gerard Goggin has written a lot on mobile communcations and
mobile media. They include: *Global Mobile Media* (2011), *Cell Phone
Culture* (2006), and edited books, *Mobile Technology and Place*
(2012), *Mobile
Technology: From Telecommunications to Media* (2009), and *Mobile Phone
Cultures* (2008). There is a also new book co-authored with Larissa Hjorth
the *Routledge Companion to Mobile Media *(2014).

All the best,


On Tue, Jul 22, 2014 at 11:40 PM, Leurs, K.H.A. (Koen) <K.H.A.Leurs at uu.nl>

> Dear Rich and all,
> That's a really exciting project you are undertaking. Will you be
> maintaining a web presence on the proceedings of the work?
> I thought of these points of reference that might be of interest:
> Norris & Inglehart (2009) Cosmopolitan Communications. Cultural Diversity
> in a Globalized World. Cambridge: Cambridge UP., especially considering
> their discussion on the World Values Survey, and how technologies does
> impact upon values (or doesn't)
> RURAL NETWORK SOCIETY, London: Anthem Press
> Sreekumar, T. T. (2011). Mobile phones and the cultural ecology of fishing
> in Kerala. Information Society, 27 (3), 172–180.
> Sreekumar, T. T. & Rivera–Sánchez, M. (2008). ICTs and development:
> Revisiting the Asian experience. Science Technology & Society, 13 (2),
> 159-174.
> Sreekumar, T. T. (2007). Cyber kiosks and dilemmas of social inclusion in
> rural India. Media Culture & Society, 29 (6), 869-89.
> Ethan Zuckermans (2013) Rewire. Digital cosmopolitans in the age of
> connection. New York: W.W. Norton.
> Andrea Calderaro is working on telecom reforms in Myanmar, see the authors
> blog post Digitalizing Myanmar: Connectivity Developments in Political
> Transitions
> http://cgcsblog.asc.upenn.edu/2014/02/24/digitalizing-myanmar-connectivity-developments-in-political-transitions/
> Best wishes,
> Koen.
> Koen Leurs, PhD
> | Marie Curie Postdoctoral Researcher,
>   London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) |
> | Affiliated researcher Graduate Gender Studies
> Institute for Cultural Enquiry (ICON)
> Utrecht University  |
> www.koenleurs.net
> ________________________________________
> From: Air-L [air-l-bounces at listserv.aoir.org] on behalf of Sandra Braman [
> braman at uwm.edu]
> Sent: Tuesday, July 22, 2014 8:11 AM
> To: air-l at listserv.aoir.org
> Subject: [Air-L] Re studying mobiles in Myanmar
> In response to Rich Ling's query, there are numerous items to mention but
> one would want to begin with the classic and still important book by Daniel
> Lerner from the 1950s, THE PASSING OF TRADITIONAL SOCIETY (re the Middle
> East) for a set of dimensions (re urbanization, participation in politics,
> etc.) that will be of importance with the mobile phone in Myanmar as
> elsewhere as a starting point. The technology involved is different, but
> here, as elsewhere, what was learned before the Internet and mobile
> telephony came along remains of deep value for questions such as this.
>  Sandra Braman
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: air-l-request at listserv.aoir.org
> To: air-l at listserv.aoir.org
> Sent: Monday, July 21, 2014 5:01:19 PM
> Subject: Air-L Digest, Vol 120, Issue 18
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> Today's Topics:
>    1. Re: Suggestions for literature on adoption of technology as
>       background for our study of mobiles in Myanmar (OPEN)
>       (john-willy.bakke at telenor.com)
>    2. European meta data researchers wanted (Mathias Klang)
>    3. The Fibreculture Journal?Call for Papers?Entanglements:
>       Activism and Technology (Jean Burgess)
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
> Message: 1
> Date: Mon, 21 Jul 2014 12:24:23 +0000
> From: <john-willy.bakke at telenor.com>
> To: <riseling at gmail.com>, <air-l at listserv.aoir.org>
> Subject: Re: [Air-L] Suggestions for literature on adoption of
>         technology as background for our study of mobiles in Myanmar (OPEN)
> Message-ID:
>         <
> 57C423DD43E5384FB10AE35D448ECF282A506DF8 at TNS-FBU-24-205.corp.telenor.no>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="utf-8"
> Hi Rich & the rest of the community
> Two titles come to my mind - both directly related to the introduction of
> phones:
> Assa Doron and Robin Jeffrey: The Great Indian Phone Book: How the Cheap
> Cell Phone Changes Business, Politics, and Daily Life (2013)
> Heather Hudson: When Telephones Reach the Village: The Role of
> Telecommunication in Rural Development (1984)
> BR,
> John Willy Bakke
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Air-L [mailto:air-l-bounces at listserv.aoir.org] On Behalf Of Rich
> Ling
> Sent: 2. juli 2014 09:10
> To: air-l at listserv.aoir.org
> Subject: [Air-L] Suggestions for literature on adoption of technology as
> background for our study of mobiles in Myanmar
> Dear all,?
> Along with colleagues from Nanyang Technical University, I am starting an
> ethnographic study of the adoption and diffusion of mobile phones in
> Myanmar. The study is also being supported by Telenor.
> Myanmar is one of the last countries in the world without a well developed
> mobile communication network (the others are North Korea,? Cuba and
> Eritrea).? We are starting to put together the literature review and we are
> interested in gathering suggestions.
> We are using Jonathan Donner's lives and livelihoods idea to frame the
> work. Beyond that I would like to get the wisdom of the crowd regarding the
> articles and books that examine the question of introducing new technology
> to a society and tracing the social consequences of the technology.? I
> think,? for example, of Cottrell's Death by Dieselization or perhaps
> Sharp's Steel Axes for Stone-age Australians. I know that neither of these
> two articles are about ICTs and that both are as old as dust, ?but they
> focus on socio-technical transitions and their social consequences. ?What
> are the other articles and books in this genre that might help us focus on
> the transition from face to face interaction to mediated communication??
> Thanks in advance.?
> Rich Ling
> _______________________________________________
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> ------------------------------
> Message: 2
> Date: Mon, 21 Jul 2014 14:42:29 -0400
> From: Mathias Klang <klang at ituniv.se>
> To: <air-l at listserv.aoir.org>
> Subject: [Air-L] European meta data researchers wanted
> Message-ID: <53CD5F15.3070309 at ituniv.se>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="ISO-8859-1"; format=flowed
> Hi,
> Part of my work is for Commons Machinery (commonsmachinery.se) and we
> are applying for an EU grant. As part of this process we would like to
> include European researchers interested in culture and metadata. This
> should be a good opportunity for PhD students. Please contact me if you
> are interested. See the short proposal sketched out below
> regards
> Mathias
> *The **Snappy Title **Project*
> Commons Machinery and partners are planning to apply for funding for a
> project, the goal of which is to bridge the gap between audiences and
> artists by making cultural material more useable online. Succinctly,
> we're developing tools that make it possible to link back to the
> original context of images, even when those images are distributed and
> shared widely online. With this e-mail, we're looking for partners in
> academia, among cultural institutions, artists, and from the community
> itself -- as thought partners, active participants in the project,
> participants in our reference group or in other forms.
> *The Funding*
> We're applying for a small scale Cooperation Project under Creative
> Europe, with an expected deadline for submission the 1st of October
> 2014. The EU funds up to EUR 200,000 for small scale projects, and
> require a 40% co-financing by applicants. We're looking for a project
> that lasts 1?-2 years, with a start date in May 2015 - but we'll draft
> the final details in collaboration.
> Organizations from any part of the world may join, but there are
> restrictions on the funding that could be made available for
> organizations from outside of the EU (and some other countries, full
> list on
> http://ec.europa.eu/culture/opportunities/documents/eligible-countries_en.pdf
> ).
> *The****Background*
> Our online environment is awash with images, however many of these
> images have been moved from their original context and no longer retain
> the information that gives them meaning. When organizations and
> individuals put images online they are often viewed in within a single
> web domain, collection or authorship. However, due to the ease in
> copying, images are often removed from their original contexts and,
> through this, they lose some of their meaning and value; it becomes
> impossible to trace them back to their origin. From a practical point of
> view, it's also an issue for users who want to correctly reuse an image
> in accordance with copyright legislation; they must save copyright and
> other information to adequately attribute the creator, and maintain this
> information through all stages of their work.
> This system is unwieldy, complex, and unreliable. Using new technology
> with tool integration, information about the images could seamlessly
> follow the image without effort from the users. This system would not be
> limited to copyright basics such as authorship but can include a range
> of additional information about the image, for example, where the
> original is, which collection it belongs to, which organization retains
> rights to the image (if any!), and where users can learn more about the
> image.
> Such information could be automatically visualized and made available to
> users, even when they encounter images outside of their original
> context, for instance when an image has been shared online, posted in a
> forum, or made available on another web site. This is of interest to
> organizations connected with the image (such as galleries, libraries,
> archives, and museums). Such organizations, as well as the artists
> themselves and the audience, would all benefit from having a stronger
> association between each and every digital image and its' context.
> *The **Solution **& Our Hypothesis*
> Commons Machinery is working to create an infrastructure and the tools
> needed to make this association persistent. Our Elogio web service will
> enable an audience to save and use images, while keeping all relevant
> contextual information intact. It will also allow holders of information
> about images to make such information available through this common
> infrastructure in a way that when the audience encounter their images
> online, the contextual information is displayed, and when a user saves
> or uses an image, the original context is carried over into the
> resulting work.
> Our hypothesis is that if this information is made available to the
> audience, it would increase the bond between audiences and artists, and
> between audiences and cultural institutions. By visualizing the context
> in which images used online originally has appeared, we believe that the
> viewers will feel a stronger connection with the artists and the
> institutions holding the originals, leading to a potential in retaining
> and enlarging their audience, as well as improving the experience of
> viewing images online and deepening the relationships.
> *The Project & The **Test*
> The technology is still in its early stages, and our hypothesis is just
> this -- a hypothesis. Through this project, we would hope to learn more
> about how this kind of technology can be used for audience engagement,
> and if it does indeed lead to deeper and more relevant relationships. We
> envision a project where each main partner has specific and
> complementary skill sets and expertise.
> The content providers -- cultural institutions -- know their content and
> are interested in making it more usable to the public while ensuring
> that links back to their institution remain intact. Our systems
> developers will collaborate with these participating institutions in
> tailoring the system to their needs, providing education and training,
> and gathering data on its use.
> Research partners will be engaged in the gathering and analysis of the
> empirical data through qualitative interviews with the participants,
> surveys among users, and analysis of the data generated from the use of
> the system. Researchers will be actively involved by conducting in depth
> interviews with stakeholders, gathering empirical data about each of
> their needs. The data from the use of the system together with
> interviews will provide material for researchers working to evaluate the
> system in the wider context of sharing cultural material online.
> Community partners will be engaged throughout the project in raising
> awareness and interest in the project and the work by holding workshops,
> training sessions and facilitating other meetings involving the
> projects' stakeholder groups. The project will provide education and
> training materials about metadata and its usage to help content
> providers and individuals alike.
> *What we're looking for*
> If you, as an individual, as representing an organisation or
> institution, or your organization or institution as a whole, has an
> interest in the project, we invite you to email us at
> hello at commonsmachinery.se <mailto:hello at commonsmachinery.se> to
> introduce yourself. As mentioned in the beginning, we're looking for
> participants in our reference group of the project that will
> continuously influence the project by giving their thoughts on issues
> we'll be facing along the way.
> We're also looking for GLAM institutions and other information holders
> who may want to participate in the project by delivering information to
> it, and, with our help, engaging with their own audiences to try the
> tools (primarily browser extensions). We can only have a very limited
> number of such core partners though, but we'll aim to make the
> instructions available broadly so that others can also participate.
> In terms of research partners, we're looking for people and universities
> with a background and interest in researching these kinds of audience
> engagements through technology, or who have other complementary research
> agendas which they feel are interesting to explore in collaboration.
> --
> ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
> Mathias Klang,
> Associate Professor, University of G?teborg
> Website: http://klangable.com
> US Cell: 215 882 0989
> ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
> ------------------------------
> Message: 3
> Date: Mon, 21 Jul 2014 21:16:41 +0000
> From: Jean Burgess <je.burgess at qut.edu.au>
> To: AoIR <air-l at aoir.org>
> Subject: [Air-L] The Fibreculture Journal?Call for
>         Papers?Entanglements: Activism and Technology
> Message-ID: <58AB30B3-0453-41F0-A114-3DE41E8BFFC4 at qut.edu.au>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="Windows-1252"
> Dear colleagues, a reminder about our upcoming special issue of FCJ.
> Abstracts due on or before 20 August.
> Begin forwarded message:
> CFP?Issue 24 Fibreculture Journal: Entanglements: activism and technology
> http://fibreculturejournal.org/cfp-entanglements/
> Please note that for this issue, initial submissions should be abstracts
> only.
> Issue Editors: Pip Shea, Tanya Notley and Jean Burgess
> Abstract deadline: August 20 2014 (no late abstracts will be accepted)
> Article deadline: November 3 2014
> Publication aimed for: February 2015
> all contributors and editors must read the guidelines at:
> http://fibreculturejournal.org/policy-and-style/
> before working with the Fibreculture Journal
> Email correspondence for this issue: p.shea at qub.ac.uk<mailto:
> p.shea at qub.ac.uk>
> This themed issue explores the entanglements that arise due to frictions
> between the philosophies embedded within technologies and the philosophies
> embedded within activism. Straightforward solutions are rarely on offer as
> the bringing together of different philosophies requires the negotiation of
> acceptance, compromise, or submission (Tsing 2004). This friction can be
> disruptive, productive, or both, and it may contribute discord or harmony.
> In this special issue, we seek submissions that respond to the idea that
> frictions between technologies and activists may ultimately enhance the
> ability of activists to take more control of their projects, create new
> ethical spaces and subvert technologies, just as it may also result in
> tension, conflict and hostility.
> By dwelling in between and within these frictions and entanglements ?
> through strategic and tactical media discourses as well as the very concept
> of an activist politics within technology ? this special issue will
> elucidate the context-specific nature, constraints and possibilities of the
> digital environments that are co-habited by activists from proximate fields
> including social movements, human rights, ecological and green movements,
> international development, community arts and cultural development.
> Past issues of the Fibreculture Journal have examined activist
> philosophies from angles such as social justice and networked
> organisational forms, communication rights and net neutrality debates, and
> the push back against precarious new media labour. Our issue extends this
> work by revealing the conflicting debates that surround activist
> philosophies of technology.
> Submissions are sought that engage specifically with the ethics,
> rationales and methods adopted by activists to justify selecting, building,
> using, promoting or rejecting specific technologies. We also encourage work
> that considers the ways in which these negotiations speak to broader
> mythologies and tensions embedded within digital culture ? between openness
> and control; political consistency and popular appeal; appropriateness,
> usability and availability.
> We invite responses to these provocations from activists, practitioners
> and academics. Critiques, case studies, and multimedia proposals will be
> considered for inclusion. Submissions should explore both constraints and
> possibilities caused by activism and its digital technology entanglements
> through the following themes:
> Alternative technology versus appropriate technology
> Pragmatism and technology choice
> The philosophies and practices of hacking technologies
> Activist cultures and the proprietary web
> Digital privacy and security breaches and errors
> Uncovering and exposing technology vulnerabilities
> Technology and e-waste
> The philosophies of long/short term impact
> Authenticity and evidence
> Initial submissions should comprise 300 word abstracts and 60 word
> biographies, emailed to p.shea at qub.ac.uk<mailto:p.shea at qub.ac.uk> and
> t.notley at uws.edu.au<mailto:t.notley at uws.edu.au>
> References:
> Tsing, A. 2005 Friction: An Ethnography of Global Connection. Princeton:
> Princeton University Press.
> The Fibreculture Journal (http://fibreculturejournal.org/) is a peer
> reviewed international journal, associated with Open Humanities Press (
> http://openhumanitiespress.org/), that explores critical and speculative
> interventions in the debate and discussions concerning information and
> communication technologies and their policy frameworks, network cultures
> and their informational logic, new media forms and their deployment, and
> the possibilities of socio-technical invention and sustainability.
> ------------------------------
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Akina (Mikami) Koh
S: akina_mikami
T: akinatweet
E: akinamikami at gmail.com

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