I'm excited to highlight that the YALSA blog recently shared a post about some of the research developed by the Drexel Youth Online Research Group. Head to the post to learn more about the project and see some of the outputs we've developed, including an infographic and set of questions to ask about your teen services.
Here's our work for the CSCW 2013 poster session - #TwitterPlay: A Case Study of Fan Roleplaying Online. I veloped this work with Melinda Sebastian (@Caoutchouc31), Alison N. Novak (@alisonnovak), Christopher M. Mascaro (@maizeandblue), Alan Black, & Sean P. Goggins (@sgoggins). Full size PDF
I was walking to the grocery store recently and came upon this bumper sticker. It does a nice job of summing up some of the major problems that trigger my research interests. I'm interested in why we have negative perceptions of young people, and how that has influenced the way our society works as well as the way research is designed, carried out, and reported. Plenty to think about there, and I'm slowly working up some more substantive writing about it, but for now, I wanted to share this picture.
Well, it has been a crazy year, and I'm just now getting back to maintaining things here. I have been doing a lot of thinking though. One of the topics I've been mulling over is racism and other really awful things on the Internet, and our responses to them. I've come across this mainly through Twitter research, and let me tell you, some of this stuff is really disheartening. Despicable Tweets is a Tumblr that collects some of this, as is Hello There Racists, but other stories have focused on it too, including several from Jezebel.
This attention has resulted in people researching the Twitter users and in at least one case involving minors, notifying their schools' administration (this was done by Jezebel, as described in this article). I'm worried about this in many ways, but Matthew Ingram's article "When does shaming racist kids turn into online bullying?" helps gets at my main question. To go a bit further - why do we feel like we can come down on kids and not challenge adults (for example, some members of Congress) for racist and sexist comments, or general bigotry? And who do we think these kids are learning these behaviors from? There seems to be a disconnect here that I haven't figured out, but I am thinking over.
I'll be working on this a bit in the next few months, as well as really, truly starting my dissertation work. I'm thrilled to be working with teens again, and I'm excited to really manage a research study of my own. In the meantime, Happy Holidays.
Hope you are all having as great a summer as I am. Time has flown by, and I'll be at Berkman for about another 3.5 weeks. Take a look at the Youth and Media Flickr photostream to get an idea of what I've been up to so far!
Over the past couple of years, the tension/balance/interplay/interaction between art and research (or what some may discuss as science) has fascinated me. I've been doing research for a relatively short amount of time, while I've been pursing "artistic" or creative endeavors since I can remember. Here is a small example from my own work that blends the two. I wrote this short text as part research proposal/part response to the Berkman Center's Youth and Media Lab's Report on Youth and Digital Media, when applying for an internship with them this summer. While it is only words presented in a graphic format, I felt like it brought some of my research ideas together with a bit of creativity in presentation. I'm fond of this, and thought I'd share.
I'm thrilled to say that I'm going to be joining the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University this summer as an intern in the Youth and Media Lab. I am so excited to get to work with such an innovative group, and I'm anticipating all kinds of awesomeness this summer. Hooray!
Just a quick note to say that I'll be in Austin from May 4 - 12 for the CHI Conference. I'll be participating the the Identity, Performativity, and HCI Workshop on Sunday 5/6, and working as a student volunteer in addition to attending the conference. I'm so looking forward to seeing the people I know and meeting new HCI folks. Also, I'll be making a pilgrimage to Mother's Cafe and Garden, which is, in my opinion, one of the best restaurants on the planet. See you in the ATX, baby!
Drexel's Graduate Student Association has started a fantastic program called Books and Bagels, where students present their work and discuss interdisciplinary research. I presented during the February 2012 event. The video is available here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tlHgcNPPoZw, and I'm on from about about 1:30 minutes in through 15:45. I discuss human-computer interaction and information science, and talk about two research projects (teens' technology and information practices and online dating) that fit within the intersection of those two disciplines.
Bryan Stevenson's "We Need to Talk About an Injustice" is one of the most powerful TED talks I've watched. Stevenson makes an excellent case for why we can't just think or talk about technology, entertainment, and design, but should also be engaging with our human values. There are some very sad and thought provoking parts of this talk. Stevenson discusses incarceration, race, the status of the poor, and the death penalty. I can't recommended watching the entire talk enough. Here are two quotes I found particularly meaningful for people engaging with technology in their work or research.
“...I believe that despite the fact that it is so dramatic and so beautiful and so inspiring and so stimulating, we will ultimately not be judged by our technology. We won’t be judged by our design. We won’t be judged by our intellect and reason. Ultimately you judge the character of a society not by how they treat the rich and the powerful and the privileged, but by how they treat the poor, the condemned, the incarcerated. Because it’s in that nexus that we actually begin to understand truly profound things about who we are.” (at 16:33 minutes)
“...our visions of technology and design and entertainment and creativity have to be married with visions of humanity, compassion, and justice.” (at 20:50 minutes)