The Digital and Our Social Natures

17 February 2020 7:30am21 February 2020 8:30am

Nicholas Agar is Professor of Ethics at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand. He is the author of How to be Human in the Digital Economy, Humanity's End: Why We Should Reject Radical Enhancement and Truly Human Enhancement: A Philosophical Defense of Limits.

Artificial Intelligence, Agency, and Ethics in Cultural Practice

17 February 2020 7:45am21 February 2020 8:45am

Nicholas Agar is Professor of Ethics at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand. He is the author of How to be Human in the Digital Economy, Humanity's End: Why We Should Reject Radical Enhancement and Truly Human Enhancement: A Philosophical Defense of Limits.

Research Seminar – Digital Workshops of the World: Software, Source Code and Skills Migration in the Global VFX Industries

20 February 2020 2:00pm4:00pm
Over the last three decades, a network of globally distributed digital visual effects (VFX) companies have arisen from Hollywood’s traditional base in Los Angeles. What started out as a branch of computer sciences and their IT industry correlates hybridized into entities that are neither ‘inside’ the Hollywood studios traditional financial structures, nor entirely outside the value chains attached to Hollywood’s film output. The global VFX industries have functioned as networks of precarious creative industries, offering work for hire on a film by film, contract by contract basis. All of this has led to an industry defined by the migration of labour to an extent that has dwarfed even traditional Hollywood production.

Workshop on Data Visualisation with A/Prof Leon Gurevitch

24 February 2020 7:30am28 February 2020 7:30am

In this workshop A/Prof Leon Gurevitch will discuss data visualisation as both a researcher and teacher. The workshop will cover the design of an energy visualisation monitor and the design and implementation of a VFX industry skills migration visualisation tool. Gurevitch teaches both data-visualisation and infographic production in his courses at Victoria University Wellington in photographics, computer generated culture and systems design.

Neuroatypicality and Creativity: Where Neural Networks Fail

26 February 2020 1:00pm2:30pm
Building AI systems that most closely approximate human neurological norms in decision making processes can be profoundly useful. However such AI systems risk ignoring human neurological atypicality which may be a boon to creative and innovative thinking. In order to avoid replicating neuro-atypical invisibility neural-network research and more complex AI systems research must start addressing the role that neurodiversity plays in producing novel and innovative breakthroughs.

Promotional Culture of the Platform

29 November 2019 9:30am5:00pm
Social media and search now dominate Australian media advertising expenditures and advertiser and marketer attention. However this advertising is some distance from our traditional advertising forms in that it is neither public nor visible. Instead it is taking place in a largely unregulated media space that lacks public visibility and scrutinising oversight. Presentations by: Tom O’Regan, Sam Kininmoth, Mark Andrejevic, Sven Broedmerkel, Richie Barker, and Jane Johnson. Discussants Katie Brennan, Franzisca Weder, Caroline Wilson-Barnao.

Symposium - Bodies and Devices: Geolocative Media

28 November 2019 9:00am4:00pm
Bodies and Devices: Geolocative Media explores the networked body as fundamental to understandings of both the body and the digital economy. The geolocated body is tracked, networked, coded, monitored and represented on a range of digital media platforms. This involves making available the body to the algorithmic and participatory logics of digital media platforms and an entangling of its experiences with these architectures. Presentations by: Peta Mitchell, Frederico Fialho Teixeira, Sarah Barns, Thao Phan, and Scott McQuire.

Image Machines Workshop

19 November 2019 10:00am2:00pm

Image Machines Workshop

19 November 2019 10:00am2:00pm
Instagram’s large and engaged user base and distinctive everyday visual cultures have eluded intensive study due to the scarcity of methods for data collection and analysis. Instamancer is an Instagram data gathering tool developed for collecting and processing Instagram posts and media files without requiring access to an API. It was developed through both the "Platform Media: Algorithms, Accountability and Design" and is a key outcome of the Visual Social Media stream of the "Platform Media" initiative. It represents the experimental media and research ambitions of those involved in the Platform Media initiative focusing as it does on the developing and testing of new ideas for the media industry as well as critical scholarship in our respective fields of research. Presented by Nicholas Carah and Dan Angus.

The Logic of Instagram: Affiliations, Aesthetics, Attention

11 November 2019 10:00am12:00pm
This presentation explores Instagram’s impact on art and visual culture by considering how it has shaped the production and consumption of street art in the public domain, sometimes affecting its appearance but also changing its context, production, audiences and meaning. While shaping these dynamics, the architecture of Instagram yields data that can help map and describe the contours and networks of graffiti and street art as a global system. Presented by Lachlan MacDowell.

A Roundtable on Streaming with Arnt Maasø

24 October 2019 11:00am12:30pm
Since the introductions of YouTube (2005), Netflix (streaming since 2007) and Spotify (2008), users are increasingly accessing cultural products via streaming services instead of owning them. This on-demand access to vast digital catalogues of works combines technologies and business models in ways that are profoundly shaping cultural practice. Presenter Arnt Maasø discusses this shift towards streaming and the major international research project on streaming of which he is a part.

2019 S.W. Brooks Public Lecture: Famished

16 October 2019 5:00pm6:30pm
This fascinating public lecture will take the form of a one-hour performance of Famished by Cherry Smyth, with accompanying soundtrack of music by composer Ed Bennett and expanded singing by Lauren Kinsella to draw on the power of collective lament. 

A Roundtable on Platforms, Power and Cultural Creation with David Nieborg

15 October 2019 11:00am12:30pm
Processes of platformisation are the elephant in the room for not only cultural creators—whether they be film and TV producers, journalists, PR professionals, authors and publishers, theatre and visual artists--but also for each of the School of Communication and Arts’ aesthetic fields and disciplines. But we often don’t see it as a systemic process working its way in related ways across the entire architecture of our cultural fields bringing these cultural fields into new, contingent relations to each other. In this roundtable, presenter David Nieborg discusses these new configurations.

Research Seminar - Selfies, Affordances, and Situational Properties

11 October 2019 3:00pm4:00pm
There is an incredible richness and nuance in the social functions, affect, localized norms, and experienced control in these visual practices of sharing and consuming selfies on visually oriented online platforms. Based on material gathered on and about Tumblr, Instagram and Snapchat over the past 7 years, this talk proposes some patterns about how people behave, how they make sense of what they are doing, and how that is imminent to discourses, norms and power hierarchies in the case of visual self-presentation on social media. Presenter: Katrin Tiidenberg.

Webtoons and Transmedia Innovations in a New Digital Economy

1 October 2019 9:30am5:00pm
Webtoons are a new addition to the popular Korean Wave creative industry phenomenon, which includes recent activities involving the supergroup BTS and their webtoon Save Me, as well as digital content created by Marvel superstar Stan Lee and others from the US entertainment industries. Vertically-scrolling webtoons – a term merging “web” and “cartoons,” coined in South Korea in the early 2000s, have become a transmedia phenomenon. Presenters: Tae-Jin Kang, Park Seok-hwan, Sun-Tae Hwang, Aaron Sammut, Lee Jae-Sik, Milan Ilich, Dan Gilmore, Dingkun Wang.

State of Play: Australian Arts Criticism Panel with Miriam Cosic, Alison Croggon, Carissa Lee and Kathryn Kelly

27 September 2019 3:00pm5:00pm
The University of Queensland’s School of Communication and Arts and the Centre for Critical and Creative Writing invite you to attend a panel discussion on the state of play in Australian arts criticism.

Research Seminar - Who Owns Your Face? Personal Identity Rights in the Era of Augmented Reality and Facial Recognition Tech

2 August 2019 3:00pm4:00pm
Recent advances in augmented reality and facial recognition are posing questions for governments, big tech and privacy advocates about what rights individuals have to control their own personal identity. While DeepFake and augmented reality technology is becoming more widely available to consumers, our personal identity is increasingly used by big tech and government in the form of facial recognition. Presenter Gordon Finlayson explores the changing landscape of personal identity and privacy rights.

Market Information in the Age of Platform Dominance: Implications for Computational Social Science

24 June 2019 11:00am12:30pm
We find ourselves in an era where much of audience activity centres around a handful of digital platforms. This also has impacted how we learn about audiences. Audience measurement has traditionally been the province of neutral third-party firms, whereas digital platforms provide their own measurement estimates, the production of which is largely shielded from external stakeholders. Presenter Harsh Taneja delineates this ongoing shift in market information regimes in media markets raising critical questions for the emerging area of computational social science.
Millenial Image Talk

Researching the Media User through Big Data: A Research Methods Conversation with Dr Harsh Taneja

21 June 2019 11:00am12:30pm
Contemporary media research necessitates the creative use of the audience and media use data of commercial market information providers to answer fundamental questions about media usage. In this research roundtable, presenter Harsh Taneja will discuss the research methods he deploys to allow the large datasets of panel-based audience measurement firms such as Nielsen and comScore to illuminate some of the most pressing problems in our transition to online enabled media.

Roundtable on Platform Media as Traditional Media

12 June 2019 1:00pm2:30pm
It has been customary in media studies to take platform media at their word and consider them as technology companies. This, with some exceptions, has been the case whether or not these companies are being discussed by cultural industries, political economy or new media/digital media scholars. However, the rise of platform media and their extension from social media and search to subscription-based streaming services has brought platforms into the very centre of media studies generating renewed interest in distribution and infrastructures paving the way for a general interrogation of platform media as media industries. Presenters Tom O’Regan and Andrew Ventimiglia will scope out continuities in media repertoires to better clarify their particular working out in platform media.

Revising Communication Law and Ethics for Platform Media

5 June 2019 1:00pm2:30pm
“Communication Law and Ethics” is a foundational Communications course designed to inform future media professionals about the legal issues and ethical norms relating to communication and media industries. The core components of this course have historically been central to traditional media industries. Yet, the emergence of digital platforms has changed every dimension of the contemporary media ecosystem. How are we to revise Communication Law and Ethics in order to adequately address this change and prepare students for a very different media world than the one imagined in the textbooks? Panellists: Andrew Ventimiglia, John Harrison, and Jane Johnston, moderated by Tom O’Regan.