Being the Media: Designing a New Rrradical Media, Day One: Radical Media Then and Now

Conference Fri 10 Feb 2012 - Sat 11 Feb 2012 The New School, Theresa Lang Community and Student Center
55 West 13th Street, 2nd Floor
Free admission
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What is radical media? What has it been in the past? What can it be in the future? What is media's relationship to social justice and movement building?

Paper Tiger Television, the Vera List Center for Art and Politics, and the School of Media Studies at The New School for Public Engagement present a two-day conference to celebrate, reflect and build on thirty roarin' years (and counting!) of media art and activism.

In 1981, Paper Tiger Television (PTTV) pioneered a truly radical public access show, raising awareness amongst workers in the communication industries of the economic, political, and social power structures perpetuated through the profit-driven mainstream media. Ever since then, the collective has been making fun, yet incisive video that demystifies the information industry and provides a platform for underrepresented perspectives. Collaborating with activists and artists, PTTV videos take many forms—from critical readings of the mass media and popular culture, to traditional style documentaries on social justice issues.

Thirty years later, how can we harness collaborative culture, critical analysis, participatory technologies, and aesthetics to incite social change? What content and platforms can we create that respond to the limits and possibilities of the ever-shifting contemporary media landscape?

We invite artists, activists, scholars, and media makers, movers and shakers of all stripes to explore these questions. Participants are challenged to collaboratively design prototypes for a new rradical media, building on the ideals of non-hierarchical-participatory culture, critically analysis, activism and innovative aesthetics. A broad cross section of individuals, working together with varies proclivities, interests, and abilities, opens up the potential for something truly revolutionary to develop.



Day Two: The Future of Media Activism: Media Intensive & Design Challenge
Saturday, February 11, 2012, 10:30 a.m.6:00 p.m.
The New School, Theresa Lang Community and Student Center
55 West 13th Street, 2nd floor
Free admission, registration recommended at vlc@newschool.edu

How can we harness collaborative culture, critical analysis, participatory technologies and aesthetics to incite social change? What content and platforms can we create that will respond to the limits and possibilities of the ever-shifting contemporary media landscape?

Paper Tiger Television puts theory into practice—participants of the conference are challenged to collaboratively design prototypes for a new rrradical media, building on the ideals of non-hierarchical, participatory culture, critical analysis, activism, and innovative aesthetics. A broad cross section of individuals, working together with varied proclivities, interests, and abilities, opens up the potential for something truly revolutionary to develop.

Media Intensive: 10:30 a.m.—12:00 p.m.
Succinct, fast-paced and provocative presentations on key topics of the design challenge: Justice and Autonomy, New Activism and Movement Building, Collectivism and Collaborative Culture, Materiality and Aesthetics

Lunch: 12:00—1:00 p.m.
Presenters and grassroots media advocates host informal discussions dedicated to conference themes.

Design Challenge: 1:00—4:30 p.m.
Groups of eight to ten participants will be challenged to collectively create prototypes for a new form of rrradical media.

Team Presentations: 4:30—6:00 p.m.
Each group gives ten minutes to present their rrradical media prototype. Selected prototypes will be featured in Documentary Fortnight 2012: MoMAs International Festival of Nonfiction Film and Media on February 24.

Media Studies Speakers
Jesse Drew, professor, Techno-cultural Studies, University of California, Davis
Pablillo Jose, hacktivist
Shannon Mattern, assistant professor, School of Media Studies, The New School
Martha Wallner, Media & Communications Coordinator, Legal Services for Prisoners with Children
Isaac Wilder, Executive Director, Free Network Foundation

Design Challenge Facilitators
Robby Herbst, artist
Tracy Luz, documentary filmmaker
Deep Dish TV, media laboratory since 1986

Democracy Now!, national, daily, independent, and award winning global news program
Housing Is A Human Right, documentary project
Manhattan Neighborhood Network, public access network
Media Action Grassroots Network, local-to-local advocacy network of grassroots community organizations
People's Production House, journalism training and production institute

Presented by Paper Tiger Television, the Vera List Center for Art and Politics, and the School of Media Studies at The New School for Public Engagement, on occasion of the Vera List Center's 2011-2013 focus theme "Thingness."