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Barack Obama names two new National Monuments important to Native Americans

Barack Obama names two new National Monuments important to Native Americans published on No Comments on Barack Obama names two new National Monuments important to Native Americans

from The Huffington Post:

The White House designated two new national monuments on Wednesday, one in Utah and the other in Nevada, that will protect important Native American cultural sites and continue the president’s legacy of environmental stewardship far beyond the end of his term. …

“Our connection with this land is deeply tied to our identities, traditional knowledge, histories, and cultures, …”

Article: How “real life” issues affect the social life of online networked communities

Article: How “real life” issues affect the social life of online networked communities published on No Comments on Article: How “real life” issues affect the social life of online networked communities

Budka, Philipp. 2008. How “real life” issues affect the social life of online networked communities. In C. Trupp & P. Budka (Eds.), Austrian Studies in Social Anthropology – Sondernummer KSA-Tage 2007 (Workshop Medien und Film), June 2008, 50-61.
Online: http://www.univie.ac.at/alumni.ethnologie/journal/abstract/budka.html

Abstract

Speaking of “the internet”, one often forgets that this is not a monolithic media technology, but a whole range of applications embedded in the life of people practicing these technologies. This paper explores on the one hand the social life of a publicly accessible mailing list that connects various indigenous and non-indigenous persons to form a global electronic network. On the other hand, it analyses a Usenet newsgroup, which is dedicated to the socio-cultural life in Austria. With the help of two cyberanthropological case studies the interconnections between “real life” or offline issues and “virtual” or online lives on mailing lists and newsgroups is demonstrated. The paper intends to show that “virtual life” never can be separated from “real life” and its issues.

Text (PDF)

Article: Menschen – nicht Medien – revoltieren

Article: Menschen – nicht Medien – revoltieren published on No Comments on Article: Menschen – nicht Medien – revoltieren

von Philipp Budka in “Die Presse”, Print-Ausgabe, 30.01.2011
Online: die Presse.com

„Social Media“ wie Facebook gelten als neuer Zunder der Revolution. Interaktive und vernetzte Medien sind aber schon lang wichtige Werkzeuge sozialpolitischer Bewegungen.

Die Bedeutung von neuen Informations- und Kommunikationstechnologien für die sozialpolitischen Umbrüche in Tunesien sowie die Proteste in Ägypten wurden und werden sowohl in der österreichischen als auch in der internationalen Medienlandschaft intensiv diskutiert. Kaum ein Beitrag, der „sozialen“ Medien wie Facebook oder Twitter nicht wesentlichen Anteil an der „Revolution“ in Tunesien oder den Protesten in Ägypten einräumt.

Bei allem Respekt vor Journalistinnen und Journalisten, die mittels Handy und Twitter direkt aus Krisenregionen und an staatlich kontrollierten Massenmedien vorbei berichten, vor einem Künstler, der sich musikalisch via YouTube gegen ein autokratisches System stellt, und vor einem Piloten, der sich weigert, Mitglieder des unterdrückenden Regimes außer Landes zu fliegen und dafür zu Recht auf Facebook gefeiert wird: Nicht vergessen sollten wir etwa bei der tunesischen „Revolution“, dass dieser politische Umbruch auf der Straße herbeigeführt und entschieden wurde.

Digitale, interaktive und vernetzte Alternativmedien waren schon lange vor den sogenannten „Social Media“ wichtige Werkzeuge von sozialpolitischen Bewegungen. Prominentes Beispiel ist der Aufstand der Zapatistas in Mexiko, der 1994 mittels Newsgroups, Mailing-Listen und Webseiten eine internationale Gegenöffentlichkeit erzeugte. Diese wiederum war bemüht, Druck auf die mexikanische Regierung auszuüben, um der indigenen Bevölkerung endlich Menschen- und Landrechte zuzugestehen. Rückblickend war es aber vor allem die geschlossen auftretende mexikanische Zivilbevölkerung, die durch landesweite Märsche, Demonstrationen und Petitionen maßgeblich zur Unterstützung der unterdrückten Indigenen Mexikos beitrug.

Neue soziale Online-Medien wurden dann beispielsweise 2009 im Zug der Wahlen im Iran verwendet, um auf staatliche Unterdrückung und gewalttätige Übergriffe auf Regierungskritiker international aufmerksam zu machen. Aber auch hier war es der sozialpolitische Druck der Straße, der dem iranischen Regime ernsthafte Probleme bereitete. Internettechnologien wie Twitter, YouTube oder Facebook konnten solange als alternative Kommunikations- und Informationsmittel eingesetzt werden, bis der Staat, vor allem dank europäischer Softwaresysteme, in der Lage war, auch diese Kommunikation zu kontrollieren, zu zensieren und zu unterdrücken. Ähnliches spielt sich nun auch in Ägypten ab.

Digitale Medientechnologien sind wunderbar geeignet, um Bilder, Texte und Augenzeugenberichte eines politischen Umbruchs schnell an eine online vernetzte „Weltöffentlichkeit“ zu vermitteln. Wie die aktuellen Beispiele Tunesien und Ägypten zeigen, finden vor allem mobile Kommunikationstechnologien in zunehmendem Maß für die lokale Protestorganisation Verwendung.

Dennoch – abseits des Hype, auf dem Boden der Tatsachen, sollten zwei Punkte besonders betont werden: Erstens hat nicht die gesamte Weltbevölkerung gleichermaßen Zugang zu digitalen Technologien (einerseits aus finanziell-wirtschaftlichen und infrastrukturellen Gründen, andererseits, weil politische Regimes versuchen, diesen Zugang aktiv zu kontrollieren). Und zweitens sind es auch im Zeitalter von Facebook & Co. die Menschen auf den Straßen, die die entscheidenden Handlungen setzen, um „Revolutionen“ herbeizuführen oder eben nicht.

Philipp Budka
Initiative Teilnehmende Medienbeobachtung
Institut für Kultur- und Sozialanthropologie der Universität Wien

US Congress Increases Funding for Native American Language Programs

US Congress Increases Funding for Native American Language Programs published on No Comments on US Congress Increases Funding for Native American Language Programs

from Cultural Survival News:

Date: 01/14/2010

Hundreds of Native language advocates convened on Capitol Hill this past May, asking Congress to approve a minimum of $10 million in additional federal support for the Esther Martinez Act, which funds Native American language immersion schools, master-apprentice programs, and other revitalization projects. Native language advocates have made the $10 million request in earnest since 2007, and the new administration heard the call. In May during the Cultural Survival and National Alliance to Save Native Languages summit, Congressional appropriators welcomed the language revitalization funding request from Code talkers, fluent speakers, and novice learners alike in nearly three dozen meetings with key members of Congress and their staffers. A $12 million increase for the Esther Martinez Native American Languages Preservation Act of 2006 was signed by President Obama on December 16, 2009 as part of the omnibus fiscal year 2010 appropriations bill (HR 3288, which included HR 3293). The $12 million in increased funds for Native languages will be administered in a competitive grants program by the Administration for Native Americans within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Article: Transforming learning infrastructures in the social sciences through flexible and interactive technology-enhanced learning

Article: Transforming learning infrastructures in the social sciences through flexible and interactive technology-enhanced learning published on No Comments on Article: Transforming learning infrastructures in the social sciences through flexible and interactive technology-enhanced learning

Budka, P., & Schallert, C. 2009. Transforming learning infrastructures in the social sciences through flexible and interactive technology-enhanced learning. In: Learning Inquiry, 3(3), 131-142.

Abstract
The changing higher educational landscape in Europe creates new learning infrastructures and transforms existing ones. Students are thus provided with new possibilities and challenges. Through the case study of a newly developed common curriculum for the social sciences of a public university in Austria, this article discusses the interacting social agents, elements, and tools of a flexible and interactive technology-enhanced learning model. In doing so, the transnational, national, and local infrastructural conditions and challenges are critically examined from a socio-technological perspective. Selected evaluation and survey results highlight students’ learning practices, usage behavior, and suggestions to improve their learning situation. The article concludes that student-centered learning models focusing on flexibility and interactivity can support the stable implementation of a common curriculum and its technology-enhanced learning infrastructure for the social sciences at public universities with high student numbers.

Keywords
Higher education – Learning – Infrastructure – Social sciences – Austria

Ontario Asks Canada To Reconsider Un Declaration On The Rights Of Indigenous Peoples

Ontario Asks Canada To Reconsider Un Declaration On The Rights Of Indigenous Peoples published on No Comments on Ontario Asks Canada To Reconsider Un Declaration On The Rights Of Indigenous Peoples

Let’s see if it works…

Official Press Release Government of Ontario, December 22, 2009

As part of Ontario’s continued efforts to enhance cooperation, and to build strong relationships with Aboriginal people based on mutual respect, Premier Dalton McGuinty has asked the Government of Canada to reconsider its position on the United Nations’ Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

Ontario supports a review of Canada’s position on the Declaration as a means to demonstrate its commitment to improving the lives of Aboriginal people throughout Canada. Reconsideration of the Declaration would demonstrate Canada’s willingness to foster an open dialogue to improve the lives of Aboriginal peoples.

more: http://media.knet.ca/node/7607

U.S. Will Settle Native American Lawsuit for $3.4 Billion

U.S. Will Settle Native American Lawsuit for $3.4 Billion published on No Comments on U.S. Will Settle Native American Lawsuit for $3.4 Billion

from the NYT:

The federal government announced on Tuesday that it intends to pay $3.4 billion to settle claims that it has mismanaged the revenue in American Indian trust funds, potentially ending one of the largest and most complicated class-action lawsuits ever brought against the United States.

The tentative agreement, reached late Monday, would resolve a 13-year-old lawsuit over hundreds of thousands of land trust accounts that date to the 19th century. Specialists in federal tribal law described the lawsuit as one of the most important in the history of legal disputes involving the government’s treatment of American Indians.

more at:
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/12/09/us/09tribes.html

Declaration on ICT for Development

Declaration on ICT for Development published on No Comments on Declaration on ICT for Development

At the World Congress on ICT for Development held 10-12 September 2009 in Beijing, a declaration on ICT for development was created, which includes the following understandings and agreements:

1) Millennium Development Goal, for Remedying the Unbalancing Boat
2) Information Age, New Stage of Human Society
3) ICT, Effective Tool for Development in the New Age
4) Education, Key to the Use of ICT Tool
5) Responsibility for Governments and Citizens
6) Responsibility for International Organizations
7) Public Call

more detailed information: http://www.wcid-cic.org/home/view.php?id=137

Since some quite outdated concepts and views on sociocultural ICT practices are being deployed in this declaration, it certainly needs to consider current research projects and results e.g. from the fields of community informatics and media technology anthropology.

Canadian government apologies to residential schools’ survivors

Canadian government apologies to residential schools’ survivors published on 3 Comments on Canadian government apologies to residential schools’ survivors

Canada’s Prime Minister Stephen Harper apologies to Aboriginal students and survivors of residential schools:

 

“Mr. Speaker, I stand before you today to offer an apology to former students of Indian residential schools. The treatment of children in Indian residential schools is a sad chapter in our history.
In the 1870’s, the federal government, partly in order to meet its obligation to educate aboriginal children, began to play a role in the development and administration of these schools.
Two primary objectives of the residential schools system were to remove and isolate children from the influence of their homes, families, traditions and cultures, and to assimilate them into the dominant culture.
(…)”

from CBC News.

Video from Harper’s Office:

 

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