Sessions at SXSW Interactive 2011 about Online Community on Monday 14th March

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  • Dealing With Internet Drama In Feminist Discourse

    by Garland Grey and Rachel McCarthy James

    The Internet is a community of communities, all filled with conflict and drama. Social justice and activism are as filled with these clashes as any other group, but the wounds inflicted can be more than difference of opinion or personality discord: in “safe spaces”, tensions can be particularly fraught

    These incidents can often be instructive and valuable. Conflict clarifies loyalties and solidifies friendships; conflict can reveal humility and pride. Controversy can teach anti-oppression activists about how to avoid unintentionally inflicting harm upon folks who do not share their privileges.

    But while call-outs can be essential to honest discussions of inequality, drama is just as often destructive. Conflict comes at a price, sometimes with little payoff. Internet drama cost emotional energy, physical resources, time, and relationships. Blogwars, 500+ comment threads, and 140-character fights are rarely in anyone’s best interest – they are usually costly to the attacker, the target, and those reading on the sidelines.

    Drama and conflict in online social justice is usually best minimized and carefully managed. This presentation, which will focus more on examination than instruction, is not just about how to check your privilege. It’s about when to call out, and how to avoid abusing others. It’s about how to respond, when to check out, and how to take care of yourself in a community that demands everything of you.

    LEVEL: Intermediate

    At 11:00am to 12:00pm, Monday 14th March

    In Room 5ABC, Austin Convention Center

  • Jewish Synergy: Social Media and the New Community

    by Chaviva Galatz

    In the 21st century, religion has found its way to the internet via social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook, making the ability to discover new avenues of belief, observance, and involvement in entirely new ways. The question is: Why are some more successful than others in embracing and executing this form of digitizing an ages-old religion full of individuals, organizations, associations, events, synagogues, schools and more? How does one convince reluctant groups and individuals to embrace Social Media? And, perhaps most importantly, how can those who hail Social Media develop and grow this new global Jewish community that exists almost exclusively online? This panel will extend efforts made on the Judaism 2.0 panel from 2010, and it will focus on the benefit of Social Media in synergizing the broad Jewish and Israeli communities through the wires and waves of the internet!

    LEVEL: Beginner

    At 12:30pm to 1:30pm, Monday 14th March

    In Big Bend, Hyatt Regency Austin

  • The Harassment Predicament: Minimizing Abuse, Maximizing Free Speech

    by delbius

    Online services tread a narrow line between enabling free speech and preventing abuse of members. Offline, harassment is often determined contextually; unfortunately, website owners and operators often lack the time, insight, and ability to determine the context surrounding a given behavior. Additionally, the speech itself may not be directly abusive; thus, identifying other vectors for abuse is becoming increasingly important. As a result, Del Harvey, the Director of Twitter's Trust and Safety department, has spent a significant amount of the past two years working to develop objective litmus tests for evaluating potentially abusive behavior in the absence of context. This presentation will draw upon the work done at Twitter as well as Del's previous background working with online safety advocates to provide practical and doable policies and suggestions for sites to utilize with a minimum of engineering investment and personnel needs.

    LEVEL: Intermediate

    At 12:30pm to 1:30pm, Monday 14th March

    In Room 10AB, Austin Convention Center