Building networks for effective collaboration and ethical practice
A workshop at the University of Cambridge, supported by the AHRC and organised by the Cambridge Digital Humanities Network in collaboration with Documenting the Now project.
What does it mean for the practice of archiving when so much of the communications within, and around social movements takes place in social media and on the Web? What are the different and shared challenges faced by activists, archivists and researchers wanting to use social media and born-digital material to document social movements? Can we learn from looking at the experience of archiving social movements of the past in order to decide what to preserve from the born-digital data of the present? What are the issues of representation, access and power that impact archival work in the social media age? Can we develop more effective modes of collaboration and ethical practice among activists, archivists and academics to address these challenges?
The two day event will create a space for conversations between activists, archivists and researchers with the aim of:
- Building communities of practice around ethical and technical challenges in archiving born-digital social movement data.
- Sharing awareness of how to use specific methodologies, tools and services for producing and using archives of born digital activist material.
- Fostering cross-cultural dialogue by bringing activists and archivists from different regions of the world together for in person conversation and network building.
- Kira Allmann (University of Oxford)
- Elena Carter (Tavistock Institute of Human Relations Archivist, Wellcome Library)
- Jeff Deutch (The Syrian Archive)
- Andrew Flinn (University College London)
- Anisa Hawes (Victoria and Albert Museum)
- Phil Hedges (Independent researcher)
- Nicky Hilton (Bishopsgate Institute)
- Alex Hopkins (Airwars.org)
- Bergis Jules (University & Political Papers Archivist, University of California Riverside, Documenting the Now)
- Vernon Mitchell Jr (Curator of Popular American Arts, Washington University in St Louis and Documenting the Now)
- Sue Pell (Richmond, The American International University in London)
- Ed Summers (Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities, Documenting the Now)
If you are an activist, archivist, researcher or developer interested in participating, please email Dr Anne Alexander with a brief statement stating who you are, any organisational or institutional affiliation and a brief explanation of why you would like to join the workshop. Please tell us if you have experiences, work or tools to share at the event. and/or questions you think we should be addressing.
|Thursday 21 September 3.00-5.00pm||
Mapping the terrain: archives, social movements and social media
Our opening session explores issues of archives and power, analysing the role of the state and corporations in the archival process, and the contradictions which emerge within that process when state and corporate power is challenged social movements. Our panellists will also examine questions of representation: what is the archive a record of? Whose voices are captured and in what circumstances? Who is missing from the archive?
Chair – Andrew Flinn (UCL)
Tea, coffee, biscuits and networking for participants
|Friday 22 September 10.00-11.30am||
Presenters from projects which seek to archive social media data reflection on their experiences, exploring challenges posed by:
Platforms (copyright, terms of service, business model, privacy, proprietary code)
Media forms (challenges of dealing with images, video, networked social data from a variety of perspectives such as size, instability of file formats, provenance, fragmented nature of social media information, heterogeneity and complexity of the datasets, dynamic content)
Roundtable: Archiving as practice: institutional and social movement perspectives
In this session, our panellists will reflect on the role of memory institutions in shaping archival practice, divergent attitudes to archiving across social movements and possible routes to collaboration between archivists and activists (both ‘inside’ and ‘outside’ social movements).
Chair: Niamh Moore (Edinburgh)
Ethics dilemma café
Wrap up session and discussion about next steps.