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2013 Open Access Day @ UWM

Dec 21, 2012   //   by cipradmin   //   Events, News  //  Comments Off on 2013 Open Access Day @ UWM

In its continued support of Open Access as a new norm in scholarship and research, the UW-Milwaukee Open Access Task Force invites the campus community to join us for a day of open access activities:

  • keynote talk featuring Victoria Stodden
  • professional panel discussion on open access on campus
  • launch of the new UWM Digital Commons platform

Visit the event page here.

Open Access Day at UWM with Dr. Victoria Stodden (Feb 8, 2013)

Dec 21, 2012   //   by cipradmin   //   Events, News  //  Comments Off on Open Access Day at UWM with Dr. Victoria Stodden (Feb 8, 2013)

In its continued support of Open Access as a new norm in scholarship and research, the UW-Milwaukee Open Access Task Force invites the campus community to join us for a day of open access activities.

Friday, February 08, 2013
12:00 – 3:30PM
UWM Libraries 4th Floor Conference Room

Keynote Address:
Digital Scholarship in Scientific Research: Open Questions in Reproducibility and Curation
Dr. Victoria Stodden
Assistant Professor, Department of Statistics
Columbia University

It is a well-accepted fact that computation is emerging as central to the scientific enterprise. With this transformation, the data and code that underly scientific findings have a key role in the communication of reproducible results. In this talk I describe the “reproducible research movement,” a grassroots effort taking hold in many fields, and new modalities to encourage sharing of data and code including new funding agency and journal policies, and new tools such as http://RunMyCode.org . Finally, I will introduce open questions facing the reproducible research movement, including costs, curation, and accessibility.

Panel Discussion on Open Access on Campus:
Dr. John Berges, Biological Sciences
Dr. Bonnie Klein-Tasman, Psychology
Dr. Peter Sands, English
Dr. Wilhelm Peekhaus, School of Information Studies

Friday, February 08, 2013
12:00 – 3:30PM
UWM Libraries 4th Floor Conference Room

12:00 Lunch
12:30 Keynote
02:00 Panel Discussion
03:00 Launch of UWM Digital Commons platform

Please Register Online:
http://sois.uwm.edu/oad13

Book Review: The Digital Rights Movement, by Hector Postigo

Dec 12, 2012   //   by cipradmin   //   News  //  Comments Off on Book Review: The Digital Rights Movement, by Hector Postigo

SOIS PhD student, Jeremy Mauger, provides the following review of The Digital Rights Movement: The Role of Technology in Subverting Digital Copyright, by Hector Postigo.The Digital Rights Movement

The Digital Rights Movement: The Role of Technology in Subverting Digital Copyright. Hector Postigo. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press, 2012.

Hector Postigo’s new book is a thoughtful investigation of a handful of the activist (and hacktivist) movements that have sprung up in response to passage of the 1998 Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). Grounded in the work of legal scholars including Jessica Litman, James Boyle, Lawrence Lessig and others, Postigo provides a sound narrative which details formulation of the DMCA and how it was captured by and designed to codify into law the interests of content producers including the Motion Picture Association of America and the Recording Industry Association of America. In particular, the author provides an engaging description of one of the most controversial portions of the DMCA – Section 1201(a) and (b) or the “anticircumvention provision.” Based on this and other stifling restrictions embedded in the DMCA, the author explores themes such as the meaning of fair use and related legal concepts, technology as enforcement, resistance through technology, and user agency and technology. Within these broad themes and in the context of a primarily historical analysis, the author posits the existence of a coherent, albeit reactionary, digital rights movement which has frequently coalesced around complications associated with enforcement of the DMCA in general and the anticircumvention provision in particular.

Using a series of case studies, the book outlines the reaction of various “social movement organizations” to the problems which have manifested in application of the law. These cases range across examples such as the notorious arrest and trial of Russian coder Dmitry Skylarov for his hack of Adobe’s eBook encryption; the myriad issues surrounding the exploitation of flaws inherent in the Content Scrambling System (CSS) embedded in DVDs; and the arms race which followed the release of iTunes including the subsequent efforts of Apple to secure digital copyright behind the walls of increasingly complex digital rights management (DRM) systems and of hackers to manipulate those systems in order to exercise fair use. Through all of these examples, this book is an exploration of the rights which have been limited by modern copyright restrictions, the technological systems which accompany these restrictions, and the efforts to re-take those rights through means both legal and otherwise.

Whatever the method, these movements have relied heavily on technological systems to realize their goals and this, in the author’s view, is most telling of all. Using the foundation provided by Langdon Winner and Richard Sclove, Postigo argues that click-through license agreements, terms of service and, most notably, DRM technologies have a distinctly political cast which has come to define how users can (and cannot) engage with rights such as fair use. In the face of these technical systems, individual rights have been eroded and democracy, in a very meaningful sense, has been weakened. However, as the book describes so well, these same systems can be the best tool for empowering “the movement and individuals within it beyond what has traditionally been possible.” Through hacking, decryption and clever manipulation of the code which defines DRM itself, digital rights movements have, in many instances, successfully re-appropriated the rights which have, quite literally, been locked away by copy-protection technology.

Postigo makes his case well and the choice of case studies vividly illustrates his key suppositions. However, as the reader, it is difficult to join in the conclusion that there is one all-encompassing program which coheres under the label “digital rights movement.” While individual hackers, activists and even activist groups have mobilized in response to specific and egregious instances of abuse precipitated by the DMCA, it is perhaps more accurate to describe these as a collection of movements which can loosely be assembled under the broad umbrella of digital rights more generally. Although specific organizations such as the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Creative Commons, Global Internet Liberty Campaign, Copyfight and others are actively engaging issues related to digital copyright and have complementary goals, it is difficult, in my opinion, to comprehend them as one unified and concerted movement. It may be more accurate to think of the tactics of individual actors, empowered by technology, as the foundation of more cooperative action.

This is the most powerful idea conveyed by the book – that technology empowers the individual in a historically and politically unprecedented manner. As the author persuasively suggests,

“[T]he practice of designing and distributing technologies that may, for example, circumvent copy-protection measures or work around existing paradigms for content distribution can be carried out by individuals and is not limited to organizations (a point that in itself is significant). So where once these kinds of impactful tactics would require large organizational resources, the possibility that a lone hacker can release a powerfully disruptive technology that is potentially widely adopted decenters the social movement organization (SMO) as a keystone for powerful collective action. More important, however, the material presence of such technologies realizes the world they seek.”

Jeremy Mauger is a doctoral candidate in information policy at the School of Information Studies, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and a research assistant at the Center for Information Policy Research.

CIPR Research Lunch: Current Research in Internet & Copyright

Oct 1, 2012   //   by cipradmin   //   Events, News  //  Comments Off on CIPR Research Lunch: Current Research in Internet & Copyright

Note: Liza Barry-Kessler’s presentation has been moved to a special SOIS Barriers to Access brown bag lunch on November 7. Details to follow.

Two members of the SOIS community will be participating in the 13th annual Internet Research conference in Salford, UK hosted by the Association of Internet Researchers (AoIR). The Center for Information Policy Research (CIPR) is pleased to provide an opportunity to preview their research presentations on Monday, October 15, 2012, 12:30-2:00pm in NWQ-B 3511 (bring your own lunch).

There will be two short presentations:

“A Chocolate Allergy Curse or a Cease and Desist Order?: Handicrafters’ Responses to Intellectual Property Issues”
Dr. Nadine Kozak, Assistant Professor, SOIS
This paper examines the conflict between handicraft bloggers and large corporations who use the crafters’ designs without remuneration or consent, the claims each group makes about taking someone’s ideas, and the issues this raises about the larger questions of morality, copyright, and intellectual property.

“Internet Filtering in Denmark: The Case of Pirate Bay”
Jeremy Mauger, PhD Candidate, SOIS
This paper argues that the filtering of Pirate Bay by the Danish government has implications beyond those of simple economics and copyright protection, rising to the level of unconstitutional restriction of protected political speech.

CIPR holds informal research lunches (bring your own lunch) a few times each semester, to provide a space for UW-M faculty, students, staff, and friends interested in information policy and ethics (conceived of broadly) to share research — both finished and in progress. If you’d like to schedule a time to present, please contact Michael Zimmer at zimmerm@uwm.edu

[This presentation has been moved to November 7. Details to follow] “Queering Copyright: How lack of copyright protection for recipes both frustrates and benefits food bloggers” 
Liza Barry-Kessler, PhD Student, SOIS
 
This paper critiques the exclusion of recipes from copyright protection, in particular as this affects food bloggers, through the lenses of feminist and queer theory.

Announcing CIPR Senior Research Fellow: Dr. Rina Ghose

Sep 30, 2012   //   by cipradmin   //   News  //  Comments Off on Announcing CIPR Senior Research Fellow: Dr. Rina Ghose

The Center for Information Policy Research welcomes Dr. Rina Ghose as the 2012-2013 Senior Research Fellow.

Dr. Ghose is an associate professor in the UW-Milwaukee Department of Geography, with research interests in Critical GIS/GIS and Society, which aims to critically examine the intertwined relationships between GIS and society through the lens of various social theories. Specifically, Dr. Ghose’s research examines ethical and legal issues related to “big geographic data” systems (such as GPS and RFID systems), as well as concerns of equitable access to GIS systems and data for citizen participation and activism.

Some of Dr. Ghose’s recent publications and presentations include:

As a Senior Research Fellow at CIPR, Dr. Ghose will collaborate with CIPR Director Dr. Michael Zimmer on research projects projects related to GIS and society, especially focused on the ethical and policy dimensions of “big data” within the GIS context.

Please join us in welcoming Dr. Ghose at her October 19 lunch presentation on Bridging the Geospatial Divide through Public Participation GIS. Details here.

CIPR/SSI Research Lunch with Dr. Rina Ghose: “Bridging the Geospatial Divide through Public Participation GIS” (Oct 19, 2012)

Sep 20, 2012   //   by cipradmin   //   Events, News  //  Comments Off on CIPR/SSI Research Lunch with Dr. Rina Ghose: “Bridging the Geospatial Divide through Public Participation GIS” (Oct 19, 2012)

Public Participation in GISUpdate: This talk has been moved to a larger room: 1st floor student lounge in NWQ-B. Details and RSVP link below.

The Center for Information Policy research, in partnership with the Social Studies of Information Research Group, welcomes UW-Milwaukee Department of Geography professor Dr. Rina Ghose, who will discuss her research on the social and policy dimensions of geographic information systems:


“Bridging the Geospatial Divide through Public Participation GIS”Geographic Information Systems is a powerful technology that analyzes geospatial data and is used prolifically in public and private sector. GIS has been used for over four decades for planning and policy making activities. GIS today is a globally dominant technology, and the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy has provided $200 million for the Big Data Initiative that emphasizes mining large spatial datasets and use of GIS. Yet GIS can be ethically criticized for being an elitist technology by virtue of its technological complexity and cost. A digital divide in GIS exists along class and race lines, whereby traditionally marginalized citizens have been excluded from using the technology. The question of democratizing GIS has been a primary goal in the GIS and Society research agenda. This presentation addresses the thorny issue of uneven access to GIS and the associated social power it confers. Following the principle that effective usage of information leads to better citizen participation in planning and policy making activities, Public Participation GIS has emerged as a strong research agenda and practice that has enabled marginalized citizens to integrate their local, experiential knowledge with public data sets, and use the technology to contest hegemonic power relations. This is a global research agenda that emphasizes not only an easy access to spatial data, but also the creation of user friendly, inexpensive/free GIS. PPGIS research and practice are widely undertaken in developing and developed countries, addressing both environmental and urban planning activities. Drawing upon my decade long PPGIS research among inner-city neighborhoods in Milwaukee, I aim to unpack the complex narrative of spatial knowledge production for effective participation of marginalized citizens into inner-city revitalization planning programs.


This CIPR/SSI research lunch is October 19, 2012 from noon-1:30pm, in the 1st floor student lounge inNorthwest Quadrant Building BLunch will be provided by the School of Information Studies.

Please RSVP here.

Zimmer presenting at International Symposium on Internet Ethics

Sep 6, 2012   //   by cipradmin   //   News  //  Comments Off on Zimmer presenting at International Symposium on Internet Ethics

International Symposium on Internet Ethics 2012CIPR director Michael Zimmer will be a featured speaker at the first “International Symposium on Internet Ethics” hosted by the Korea Internet & Security Agency (KISA) and Korea Society of Internet Ethics (KSIE), held in Seoul, South Korea, September 11-12, 2012.

Alongside other international representatives, he will be presenting a talk on “Internet Ethics Issues and Action in the United States,” where he outline a set of core set of Internet ethics issues related to privacy, property, content, and security. A copy of his presentation is available here.

CIPR Fellow Jean Preer to Present at Wisconsin Library Association Conference

Sep 5, 2012   //   by cipradmin   //   Events, News  //  Comments Off on CIPR Fellow Jean Preer to Present at Wisconsin Library Association Conference

CIPR faculty fellow Dr. Jean Preer (SLIS-Indiana) will be presenting her research “Prepare to be Challenged!” at the 2012 annual conference of the Wisconsin Library Association.

While most public libraries now have some sort of process allowing challenges to works in their collection some may find objectionable, the controversy in West Bend, Wisconsin, provides an opportunity to reexamine this process and explore how it can best serve the interests of both the library and concerned patrons. The program will discuss a survey of the challenge procedures and forms adopted by Wisconsin public libraries. Using hands-on exercises and role plays, participants will consider the variety of mechanisms currently in place and address such questions as standing to challenge a work in a public library collection, the role of the library’s collection development policy, the make-up of any challenge review committee, the option to appeal the committee’s determination, compliance with open meeting laws, and the time frame for decision. By providing a forum for opposing points of view, the challenge process can affirm the library’s commitment to intellectual freedom and educate the community about its stake in free access to information. A closer look at the challenge procedure can suggest ways in which it might accomplish both more effectively.

The presentation is Thursday, October 25 from 2:15-3:30 at the La Crosse Center.

Call for Applicants: CIPR Senior Research Fellow

Jul 28, 2012   //   by cipradmin   //   News  //  Comments Off on Call for Applicants: CIPR Senior Research Fellow

The Center for Information Policy Research (CIPR) is seeking a Senior Research Fellow for the 2012-2013 academic year.

Established in 1998 within the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee School of Information Studies (SOIS), CIPR is a multidisciplinary research center for the study of the intersections between the policy, ethical, political, social and legal aspects of the global information society. CIPR facilitates information policy research through its research agenda, lecture series, consulting and outreach, focusing on such key information policy issues as privacy, intellectual freedom, intellectual property, access to information, censorship, and the complex array of government, corporate, and global information practices and policies (see http://www4.uwm.edu/cipr/about/). A particular focus for CIPR in 2012-2013 is “big data.”

The Senior Research Fellow position has been created to provide a senior scholar the opportunity to participate in the intellectual community of CIPR and SOIS. UWM faculty in all departments who hold the rank of assistant, associate, or full professor may apply.

Terms of the Fellowship:

  • The Senior Research Fellow is 1-year appointment, with the possibility of renewal.
  • Duties include: collaborate with Center personnel on research projects as appropriate, participate in Center events and outreach efforts, and provide informal mentoring to SOIS students with aligned interests.
  • For 2012-2013, the Fellow is expected to co-author a major, collaborative research grant proposal with the CIPR Director, focusing on information policy issues related to “big data.”
  • The Fellow will be provided dedicated workspace within CIPR, and have access to SOIS support functions (grant writing, front office, business office, IT support).
  • The Fellow will receive compensation of 1/9th of the previous academic year salary, payable in summer 2013, in accordance with UW System policy.

Application Information:

Please submit the following materials, preferably as .pdf files, as e-mail attachments to Dr. Michael Zimmer, CIPR Director, at zimmerm@uwm.edu:

  • letter explaining your research agenda and its appropriateness to CIPR, broadly, as well as a brief proposal for a major, collaborative research grant proposal focusing on “big data.”
  • curriculum vitae
  • recent article, manuscript (article length), or other appropriate example of your research

Deadline for applications is August 31, 2012. Decisions to be made by September 15, 2012, with appointment commencing upon acceptance.

For more information, please contact Dr. Michael Zimmer, CIPR Director, at zimmerm@uwm.edu.

After Successful 2011-2012 CIPR Forges Ahead

Jul 27, 2012   //   by cipradmin   //   News  //  Comments Off on After Successful 2011-2012 CIPR Forges Ahead

Under the dual leadership of SOIS faculty Joyce Latham and Michael Zimmer, the Center for Information Policy Research (CIPR) had one of its most active academic years during 2011-2012.

A key goal for CIPR this past year was to involve more faculty and students – both within the School of Information Studies and across campus – in CIPR activities, with the expectation of generating a collegial and collaborative environment for engaging in a range of approaches to information ethics and information policy. This was achieved, in part, through the formulation of a doctoral student reading group on the topic of “information power” with CIPR fellow Professor Sandra Braman (Department of Communication, UWM), as well as through hosting various brown bag lunches during the year, combining faculty and student presentations, which drew attendees from across campus.

CIPR also made available new Research Travel Awards in spring 2012, providing funds for members of the entire campus community engaging in research aligned with the center. Awards were granted to Wilhelm Peekhaus (assistant professor, SOIS), Christopher Terry (lecturer, Department of Journalism, Advertising, and Media Studies-UWM), and Jeremy Mauger (PhD student, SOIS). These awards, along with CIPR’s enhanced Web and email presence, increased its visibility across campus.

CIPR continued its commitment to information policy-related events across campus and within relevant academic and professional communities. During 2011-2012, CIPR helped sponsor numerous events, including the “Minding the Gaps: Wikileaks & Internet Security in the 21st Century” symposium hosted by the Center for 21st Century Studies, the Computer Ethics/Philosophical Enquiry (CEPE) conference, the WLA pre-conference on “Tell me What Democracy Looks Like”, the unconference on “Feminism in LIS”, the screening of “Big Brother, Big Business” for Choose Privacy Week, and the 2nd “Ethics in Information Organization” conference.

Along with Dr. Braman, CIPR hosted other distinguished scholars as visiting fellows. Dr. Loretta Gaffney(University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign) and Dr. Jean Preer (Indiana University-Indianapolis) contributed their expertise in intellectual freedom and library ethics to the WLA pre-conference and related activities. CIPR also welcomed Dr. Luciano Floridi (University of Hertfordshire and the University of Oxford), the leading expert in the philosophy of information, who led discussions with SOIS PhD students on information ethics and the philosophy of information.

Lastly, the American Library Association’s (ALA) Office of Intellectual Freedom awarded CIPR a grant to conduct a survey on “Librarian Attitudes and Behaviors Regarding Informational Privacy” and participate in related privacy education and outreach activities funded through the OIF’s partnership with the Open Society Foundation.

Moving Forward in 2012-2013 

In 2012-2013, CIPR will be directed by Assistant Professor Michael Zimmer, with Assistant Professor Latham focusing her efforts on SOIS’s Public Library Leadership Concentration. CIPR’s focus for the coming year will be on growing its research agenda through numerous projects and external grant applications.

CIPR will continue its partnership with the ALA Office of Intellectual Freedom and will concentrate on the development and evaluation of educational materials to help librarians teach patrons about privacy-related issues. Dr. Zimmer’s own research agenda, centered on issues of information privacy, intellectual property, and internet research ethics, will become incorporated into CIPR activities.

Additionally, CIPR plans to add a senior Research Fellow to assist with grant and research activities. Drawn from existing UW-Milwaukee faculty, the Fellow will join the intellectual community of CIPR to collaborate on research projects, jointly write research grant proposals, and provide informal mentoring to students. A key goal for the Research Fellow will be to collaborate on the creation of a new research project focused on “big data.”

CIPR saw much momentum in 2011-2012, and 2012-2013 looks to be another exciting and busy year at the Center.