Digital Media Mash Up, September - Week 4

In this Issue

Upcoming Events - In Washington, D.C.

In the News:


Upcoming Events - In Washington, D.C.

From Tehran to Tahrir: Social Media and Dynamics of Collective Action under Authoritarian Regimes
Tuesday, September 27, 2011
Zeynep Tufekci, University of North Carolina
About: What role did the new media ecology play in the ouster of long-standing dictators in Egypt and Tunisia as well as the continuing unrest across the region? In this talk, I present data from a large protester survey (n=1050) undertaken in Tahrir during February of 2011 and conceptually examine how the new media ecology, composed of satellite TVs, social media and cell phones, upsets the erstwhile stable dynamics of repression under "durable authoritarianism."
Location: Berkman Center
23 Everett Street, Second Floor
Cambridge, MA 02138

Digital East 2011
September 28-29, 2011
Join hundreds of Digital executives, senior marketers, entrepreneurs, web strategists, bloggers, and investors at the Second Annual Digital East for expert content on opportunities and trends created by the latest in web innovation
Location: Sheraton Premiere at Tysons Corner, Virginia
8661 Leesburg Pike
Vienna, VA, 22182

In the News

Global Censorship Update

Jailed Blogger Resumes Hunger Strike, in Critical Condition Again
While the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces threatens to use the state of emergency law against all journalists who "endanger social peace," the blogger Maikel Nabil Sanad¸ Egypt's first prison of conscience since the revolution, is still in prison, has reportedly resumed his hunger strike and is in a critical physical condition again. (Reporters Without Borders, 9/17),41015.html

Technology that Protects Protesters
Early this year, as street protests began spreading across the Arab world, a young Internet expert from Germany, Katrin Verclas, asked Egyptian democracy activists what kind of technology they needed most. More laptop computers? Better access to the Web? Tools to evade censorship? Software to post videos?
The activists' biggest desire, Verclas said, was simple: They wanted safer cellphones. (LA Times 9/18)

Iran Arrests Six 'BBC Persian Film-Makers'
The Iranian authorities have arrested a group of film-makers and accused them of working for the BBC Persian service, which is banned in the country. (BBC, 9/19)

Many News Websites Unblocked, But 17 Journalists and Three Netizens Still Held
Reporters Without Borders has confirmed that access to a number of previously banned foreign news websites including Youtube, BBC, Reuters, The Bangkok Post, Straits Times, Radio Free Asia, Irrawaddy, Democratic Voice of Burma, and the Burmese version of Voice of America has been unblocked. Internet connections nonetheless continue to be very slow. (Reporters Without Borders, 9/20),4102...

Bahrain Anti-government Activists Could Face Charges over Web Calls for Protests
Bahrain is stepping up pressure on anti-government activists ahead of elections this week, warning they could face jail for posting Web messages urging protests or other acts of dissent. (Washington Post 9/22)

Digital Media News Affecting Activists

Wall Street Protesters Inspired by Arab Spring Movement
It worked in Cairo's Tahrir Square. Now, taking their cue from social-media fueled uprisings in places like Egypt and Iran, a band of online activists hopes it will work on Wall Street. (CNN, 9/17)

Burma's Suu Kyi 'Too Busy' to Use Facebook and Twitter
The Burmese pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi says she has been too busy since her release from detention to use Facebook and Twitter. (BBC, 9/18)

In Berlin, Pirates' Strong Showing Surprises Even Them
With laptops open like shields against the encroaching cameramen, the young men resembled Peter Pan's Lost Boys more than Captain Hook's buccaneers when they were introduced Monday as Berlin's newest legislators: They are the members of the Pirate Party. (New York Times 9/19)

Combining Crowdsourced Satellite Imagery Analysis With Crisis Reporting: An Update on Syria
Members of the Standby Volunteer Task Force (SBTF) Satellite Team are currently tagging the location of hundreds of Syrian tanks and other heavy military equipment on the Tomnod micro-tasking platform using very recent high-resolution satellite imagery provided by Digital Globe. (iRevolution, 9/19)

Bad Service? Holding Officials Accountable With SMS, radio, and TRAC FM
A recent radio poll at Sanyu FM in Kampala, Uganda, asked listeners what area of service delivery should be a priority: healthcare, education, security, sanitation, or transport. Using a new tool, TRAC FM, the station was able to solicit comments via SMS from listeners, discuss the issue on the air, and create and post online visualizations of the responses. The station received 103 SMS responses which showed that healthcare was the major concern for listeners, which accounted for 65% of responses. (MobileActive, 9/21)

Update on Digital Media Companies and Outlets

EU Probing if Google Dominates Internet Search
EU regulators are still undecided whether Google dominates in Internet search and if it has abused rivals in breach of competition rules, the EU's antitrust chief said on Friday. (Reuters, 9/16)

Twitter Board Loses Two Power Players
Three behind-the-scenes power players have left Twitter, the latest in a series of departures that are reshaping the micro-messaging site. (CNN, 9/17)

Google Preparing for Senate Hearing
Google's Eric Schmidt, the online search giant's point man for all things Washington, goes before a Senate panel this week to argue the company is not a rival-abusing bully, but in fact is struggling to stay on top. (Reuters, 9/18)

Updates Improve Facebook and Twitter Connections
Facebook members will soon be able to pipe their profile directly to a connected Twitter account. (BBC, 9/19)

Google Girds for a Grilling
Google Inc. is taking no chances as its executive chairman, Eric Schmidt, prepares to face a Senate hearing Wednesday on whether the company is abusing its dominance in Internet search. (Wall Street Journal, 9/19)

Google+: Social Media Upstart 'Worse Than a Ghost Town'
I wanted to log on to Google+. I swear I did. But the thought of it made me tired. (PBS MediaShift, 9/19)

Facebook to Launch Profile Redesign
Facebook plans to roll out a major redesign of user profiles at its f8 developer conference this week, Mashable has learned. (Mashable, 9/20)

Twitter Starts Selling Political Ads
Twitter began selling political advertising on Wednesday to about a half-dozen presidential candidates and national party committees under a pilot program that allows specific posts to appear in the timelines of people who follow campaigns and to pop up when certain search terms are used, Twitter officials announced. (New York Times, 9/21)

Google's Eric Schmidt Denies 'Cooking' Search Results
Google Inc. Chairman Eric Schmidt on Wednesday denied that his company "cooked" its search results to send Internet users to its own growing stable of online services. (Los Angeles Times, 9/22)

Why Facebook Needs a Hit
As it prepares to host its annual conference Thursday, Facebook is in a funk. (CNN, 9/22)

Facebook Debuts Timeline
In a keynote speech at the company's f8 developer conference in San Francisco, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg described Timeline as "a great way to discover all the things people have done their whole life." Timeline's aim is to allow users to easily browse through the history of their activity on Facebook all the way back to the day they were born. "Timeline is a completely new aesthetic for Facebook," Zuckerberg said. (New York Times, 9/22)

Facebook Changes: Share More, Do More
Facebook is growing up. The company revealed its Web ambitions Thursday in a keynote speech reminiscent of Apple's slickly produced presentations, as CEO Mark Zuckerberg outlined the company's next stage. (Washington Post, 9/22)

Social Wars: Facebook's Timeline, Media Grab; Google+ Dead or Alive?
This week is a special edition the war between the social networks, and what that means for the media world. Mark Zuckerberg took the stage at f8 to announce big changes to Facebook, including a new Timeline to showcase media from your entire life, as well as open graph apps that let you view media within Facebook. (PBS MediaShift, 9/23)

Digital Media in the Middle East

McManus: Technology that Protects Protesters
Congress is getting ready to make deep cuts in federal spending, including foreign aid. Here's one program it ought to spare. Call it Internet Freedom 2.0. (Los Angeles Times, 9/18)

Fighting in Libya Injures Reporter
Rebels battle Gadhafi loyalists in Sirte. Phil Black reports how one CNN producer was injured in the crossfire. (CNN, 9/18)

Jewish News TV Network to Launch on Wednesday
The first-ever Jewish news network will begin broadcasts this Wednesday. Jewish News 1 (JN1) was born as an alternative to the world's leading news networks - CNN, Fox News and Sky News. But its main goal is to serve as the Jewish version of al-Jazeera, which has won the hearts of tens of millions of Arab viewers over the past 15 years. (Radio Netherlands Worldwide, 9/19)

In Kabul, It's Not MTV, It's a Mission
Tom Freston is a pretty mellow guy, but sitting in the corner of a downtown Manhattan restaurant last week he was getting very excited as he talked about his new project. "Every time I go there, there are kids doing a bunch of new things, making all kinds of interesting programming," he said. "The work they are coming up with is remarkable." (New York Times, 9/19)

Wadah Khanfar Resigns from Al Jazeera
This morning, Wadah Khanfar, the long-time director-general of Al Jazeera, the Qatar-based pan-Arab satellite network, announced he was stepping down after 8 years at the helm. Here is his resignation note, which was emailed to staff: (Foreign Policy, 9/20)

Algeria to Open up Television Broadcasting
Algeria will have its first private television channels in 2012, Communication Minister Nacer Mehal was quoted as saying Monday by the el-Khabar newspaper. (Bikyamasr, 9/20)

After Disclosures by WikiLeaks, Al Jazeera Replaces Its Top News Director
Al Jazeera, the pan-Arab news network financed by Qatar, named a member of the Qatari royal family on Tuesday to replace its top news director after disclosures from the group WikiLeaks indicating that the news director had modified the network's coverage of the Iraq war in response to pressure from the United States. (New York Times, 9/20)

Online Journalism Booms in Egypt, But Not Without Restriction
Since the uprising, a plethora of new online initiatives have sprung up. Several citizen journalists have become full-on celebrities. News agencies have started disseminating on Facebook. New TV channels are aired. (PBS MediaShift, 9/22)

Digital Media in Africa

Information as Aid in East Africa's Famine
In any emergency, be it natural disaster or man-made, long- or short-term, people's lives are turned upside down. Knowing what's happening, where to go for assistance and who to call for help is crucial to their survival and recovery. (National Geographic, 9/19)

Zambians Watch Internet, Social Media for Vote Fraud
Zambians wary of electoral fraud flocked to the Internet and social media on Tuesday to expose any irregularities in a closely contested presidential and parliamentary poll. (Reuters, 9/20)

First 'Facebook Trial' over Incitement to Uprising Collapses Without Technical Evidence
Defense attorneys in Zimbabwe say the case against a man accused of inciting a political uprising on Facebook has collapsed. (AP, 9/21)

Social Media in Mexican Drug Wars

Latest Battlefield in Mexico's Drug War: Social Media
Twitter users report gun battles and fiery road blockades. A website lists victims' names and details of how they died. A blog posts gory photos of gruesome killings and videos of drug lords' confessions. (CNN, 9/15)

Mexico Murders Show How Internet Empowers, Threatens
Two days ago, I learned about two young people killed by drug gangs in the border city of Nuevo Laredo, Mexico, their corpses bound and hung from a bridge. Unfortunately, drug murders happen so often in Mexico that they are not news anymore. This time was different. (CNN, 9/16)

After Wasted Month in Prison, Two Social Network Users Freed, Charges Dropped
The Veracruz state prosecutor's office yesterday dropped the terrorism and sabotage charges that it brought against social network users María de Jesús Bravo and Gilberto Martínez Vera for posting messages on Twitter and Facebook about the possibility of an organized crime attack on a Veracruz school. (Reporters Without Borders, 9/22),40907.html

Digital Tools for Journalists

Dutch Regional Newspapers Launch Data Journalism Project Regiohack
The internet is bursting with information, but journalists - at least in The Netherlands - don't get the full potential out of it. Basic questions on what data driven journalism is, and how to practise it, still have to be answered. (Online Journalism Blog, 9/20)

Corporation of Public Broadcasting Publishes Social Media Policy Guide for Public Broadcasters
Even though NPR and PBS have social media policies (while other news organizations choose not to and still others debate their value), hundreds of independent public broadcasters have shared no common resource for social-media best practices. The Corporation for Public Broadcasting wants to fill that gap with a newly released social media handbook for stations, which is hosted at the National Center for Media Engagement website. CPB commissioned the marketing firm iStrategy Labs to write a guide that targets a broad audience: not just the stations who need guidance, but the stations who still need convincing of social media's value. (Nieman Journalism Lab 9/20)

A Journalist's Primer to Google+
After a few months of chatter, Google+ has opened up to everyone. As a journalist, Google+ is something you need to explore. Its simplicity of broadcasting your message is worth understanding and using to connect with news consumers. (PBS MediaShift, 9/22)

Internet Rules and Regulations

Canada Regulator Tightens Mobile, Internet Rules
Canadian companies that own both television content and the means to distribute it will face tighter rules for selling programming rights to rivals, the country's broadcast and telecom regulator said Wednesday. (Vancouver Sun, 9/21)

Russia, China, Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan Introduce Proposed Internet 'Code of Conduct'
This unlikely quartet of countries has introduced a resolution to the U.N. General assembly, calling for the establishment of "international norms and rules guiding the behaviour of States in the information space." (Foreign Policy, 9/21)


The Importance of Understanding the Growing U.S. Latino Market Online
Rene Alegria, founder of Mamiverse, a website focused on Latina moms, has heard every possible misconception of the Latino market. For years, these misconceptions kept many businesses from tapping into this fast-growing consumer segment. (PBS MediaShift, 9/14)

8 Ways Tech-Based Foundations Are Changing Philanthropy
Not so long ago, most major U.S. foundations fit the image of the giant East Coast institution, rooted in fortunes made by titans of the manufacturing and extractive industries. For decades, the Ford, Carnegie, and Rockefeller foundations carried out sweeping programs on a scale that rivaled those of governments. Many public reforms and institutions were buoyed by their efforts, including public broadcasting, public libraries, and the Green Revolution. (PBS MediaShift, 9/15)

Japan's Defense Industry Hit by Its First Cyber Attack
Japan's biggest defense contractor, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd, said on Monday hackers had gained access to its computers, with one newspaper saying its submarine, missile and nuclear power plant component factories had been the target. (Reuters, 9/19)

Why Netflix Is a Cautionary Tale for Newspapers
When Netflix first announced earlier this year that it was changing its pricing plans for its legacy DVD-by-mail service as a way of promoting its digital streaming business, we wrote about how this was very similar to what newspapers have been trying to do (Gigaom, 9/19)

Newspaper Uses Augmented Reality App to Make Ads, Stories Leap off Page
A daily newspaper in Dublin, Ireland, is working with the makers of the Blippar mobile app to create "the world's first fully augmented reality newspaper." What that means is that readers can point their smartphones or tablet cameras at certain stories or ads in the Metro Herald this week, and the Blippar app will bring them to life. The reader sees an interactive, three-dimensional feature on the screen, laid over the print item. Here is a general demo video of Blippar in action. (Poynter 9/19)

Illiteracy Knocking on Cuba's Doors
If it doesn't allow free access to the Internet soon, Cuba will be a country of virtual illiterates in the next few years. The New Technologies of Information and Communications (NTICs) have invaded contemporary society putting the Internet, computers and cellphones under the heading of indispensable. (Havana Times 9/20)

Tables Turned on WikiLeaks Founder
Julian Assange, the WikiLeaks founder who rose to prominence by publishing others' information without their consent, will wake up today with his own autobiography on sale against his wishes. (Financial Times, 9/22)


Americans and Text Messaging
Some 83% of American adults own cell phones and three-quarters of them (73%) send and receive text messages. The Pew Research Center's Internet & American Life Project asked those texters in a survey how they prefer to be contacted on their cell phone and 31% said they preferred texts to talking on the phone, while 53% said they preferred a voice call to a text message. Another 14% said the contact method they prefer depends on the situation. (Pew, 9/19)