[Asis-l] Conf Announcement Open cultures

Michel J. Menou Michel.Menou at wanadoo.fr
Sun Apr 13 12:50:27 EDT 2003

+ Vienna, June 5 & 6, 2003
+ http://opencultures.t0.or.at
+ open at t0.or.at

** Conference Announcement
** Call For Resources
** Travel Grants Available


Today's infosphere allows a quick and easy exchange of digitized

The tools of creation and the means of distribution are becoming more
affordable by the month, thus continuously expanding the range of
creators and users. Yet, not everyone is happy with this. A coalition
of large media conglomerates calls for Draconian measures to stop this
free flow of information. New restrictive technologies and new
oppressive laws are being developed right now, in an attempt to create
scarcity out of the digital abundance. The current security fears are
manipulated to equate openness with danger in a cynical effort to
protect the assets of large industries against the forces of

Against this backdrop, a counter movement is taking shape that is
guided by the idea of 'the commons': resources accessible to all.

Rather than expanding the means of control to catch up with the ease
of data processing, this movement takes the free availability of
information as its starting point. It recognizes that a free society
needs free flows of information, that the attempt to control
information quickly leads to controlling people. Creativity -
commercial, scientific and artistic - requires the ability to easily
and freely built upon what others have created.

The Open Cultures conference will survey the new territory of the
commons by bringing together leading thinkers and practitioners from
different corners of this vast field. We will talk about access to
scientific information, free software, patents and other forms of
knowledge monopolies, wireless community networks, open distribution
channels, about the economics and the aesthetics of the commons.

We want to strengthen the understanding of the shared visions and
goals, learn from the different experiences and approaches and send a
signal that, yes, openness is possible, indeed, it's the only
direction to move forward.

The conference will focus on the following topics:

* Information Commons
Open Access Journals and other institutional initiatives to build a
infrastructure for free access to information

* Media of the Commons
Grassroots publishing, peer-to-peer, free distribution, freenet

* Wireless Community Networks
Rather than buying bandwidth from global telecom giants rebuilding
flows locally, from the ground up. One wireless cell at a time.

* Politics Of the Commons
International treaties and international governing bodies. What are
the possibilities of using them to advance openness and access?

* Culture of the Commons
What culture and art is emerging in the commons?

The conference will include workshops of streaming technologies and on
wireless networks as well as exhibition of media installations who
explore the ideas of openess and free access.

Speakers and Guest include:

Shu Lea Cheang (Artist, Kingdom of Piracy), Vera Franz and Darius
Cuplinskas (Open Society Institute, Budapest, osi.hu), Adam Hyde
(Artist, Frequency Clock), Jaromil (Developer, Dyne:bolic), Jamie Love
(CPTech), Armin Medosch (Artist), Eben Moglen (Professor of Law,
Columbia University NYC, EFF Pioneer 2003), Eric Moeller (Journalist,
infoanarchy.org), Andy Mueller-Maguhn (Chaos Computer Club, ccc.de,
ICANN), Bruce Sterling (Novelist), Alan Toner (NY University, Media
activist, freedistro.org)


As we all know, a conference as a live event has a limited reach: a
few dozen people at worst, a few hundred at best. Nevertheless, its
value can be much greater. The event character of a conference serves
to focus attention, to create a defined context in which people, ideas
and projects meet, learning takes place and new ideas can grow. Made
accessible and archived on line, this focus can become an important
reference point for the larger discussion way beyond the actual event.

We would like to invite you to expose your ideas/projects to this
focus on Open Cultures without the burden of having to travel to
Vienna. How? By submitting a resource to the "Open Cultures

A resource can be a text, a media file, a project, or a call for
participation. We are in the process of assembling critical resources
for the theory/practice of free information flows. We invite you to
contribute to this collection of resources, by submitting one, or
more, resource(s) either as original media files, or as links to
resources already out-there but hard to find. The resource that you
want the community to know about can be your's or someone else's.

Please browse the resources that are already online and contribute to
expanding the scope and value of this open collection.

Should you have any questions / comments to this project, please do
not hesitate to contact us.

open at t0.or.at


Thanks to a generous contribution from the Open Society Institute
(OSI), a small number of stipends are available to cover participants'
travel costs. Participants eligible for these stipends should be from
countries outside the US and EU.

If you wish to apply for a stipend, please send an email to open at t0.or.at
indicating your interest in the conference and travel expenses.

Deadline for applying is April 30, 2003. The stipends will be awarded
in consultation with the OSI and recipients will be notified by May 15.

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