Search results for 'politics'


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Holding Out for Un-alienated Communication 

"In August 1996, we called for the creation of a network of independent media, a network of information. We mean a network to resist the power of the lie that sells us this war that we call the Fourth World War. We need this network not only as a tool for our social movements, but for our lives: this is a project of life, of humanity, humanity which has a right to critical and truthful information."

These were the words of Subcomandante Marcos, speaking in 1997 from Chiapas in the midst of the Zapatistas' guerrilla information war against the Mexican state and the neocolonialism reflected in NAFTA. Marcos's powerful statement and Zapatista stories of struggle were circulated from the jungle of Chiapas on mailing lists, listservs, and websites, capturing the imagination of activists around the world and galvanizing a wave of new grassroots media projects. Perhaps no project more purely embodied this response than the Indymedia network, which was launched in November 1999 at the Seattle protests against the World Trade Organization (WTO) meetings and quickly grew into a global network of news websites.

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A context for collecting the new media 

At the turning of the year 1992 I received the program and manifesto for the Next 5 Minutes Conference in Paradiso. As professional collector of documents by and about social movements for the International Institute of Social History, the list of videos to be shown caught my attention immediately. This was an excellent opportunity to realize something for which I had been trying already for some time, to make an international sample collection of products from the movement of new independent video makers.

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Cartography of Excess 

Utopian ideas - like "Spaceship Earth" - are round, multidimensional, interrelated: their archetypal map is the Milky Way, the infinite constellations. But rational thinking is instrumental, linear, it distorts: and that's exactly the problem with the Mercator map, the most common world projection. Buckminster Fuller, inventor of the geodesic dome, created a "Dymaxion map" to undo those distortions. First the earth becomes a geometric figure, an isocahedron: its 20 triangles are then disjointed and laid flat, so the land masses radiate from a nexus in the north, without splitting continents or enlarging the polar regions.

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CAE: Framing Tactical Media 


Anyone involved with "tactical media" (TM) before its famed christening in 1996 at the Next Five Minutes had to know that naming this cultural/political tendency was going to have some very negative repercussions. The naming was the first step in doing what TM feared the most°Xclaiming cultural territory doomed to house haunting archives. Once given an official title, so many nasty processes could begin - most significantly, the construction of historical narratives. So many narratives already exist explaining this ephemeral, immediate, specific, and deterritorialized process of cultural production that seemed so urgent to so many radical subjects in the early 90s.

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The Global Intelligence Files 

LONDON - Today, Monday 27 February, WikiLeaks began publishing The Global Intelligence Files - more than five million emails from the Texas-headquartered "global intelligence" company Stratfor. The emails date from between July 2004 and late December 2011. They reveal the inner workings of a company that fronts as an intelligence publisher, but provides confidential intelligence services to large corporations, such as Bhopal's Dow Chemical Co., Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon and government agencies, including the US Department of Homeland Security, the US Marines and the US Defense Intelligence Agency. The emails show Stratfor's web of informers, pay-off structure, payment-laundering techniques and psychological methods.

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Indymedia: It's time to move on 

Indymedia is the name given to a particular network with a rather uneven global reach, to which many hundreds of local independent media projects, mostly web-based, have been affiliated at one time or another. It is also the name for a particular approach to news media - one that attempts to avoid hierarchal production and hence promote grassroots reports on events.

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Signs of the Times: the Popular Literature of Tahrir 

Protest Signs, Graffiti, and Street Art - a special issue of Shahadat

This issue takes as its focus the popular literature of the Egyptian Revolution. Drawing on protest signs, graffiti, and street art in Tahrir to read the culture of resistance particular to the Egyptian Revolution, the curators examine how protesters changed the political narrative through the use of images, memorials, and expressions of daily life.  Featuring examples from an extensive gallery of online images culled from the collections of several prominent Egyptian journalists and activists, the online piece is a visual tour of some of the creative production of Egypt's Revolution.  A collaborative curation project split between New York City and Cairo, this is ArteEast's first critical look at the cultural production related to recent political developments in the Middle East.
- Co-curators, Rayya El Zein & Alex Ortiz.

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make world paper 3 

Two years after 911 the global cup looks both half full and half empty. It's hard to be optimistic, yet there are plenty of reasons for it. With the Bush-Blair war machine running out of steam, the movement of movements shifts its attention to alternatives for the WTO, Security Council and similar post-democratic bodies. In the moral desert of the Iraq War the structuration of imaginary consent through the repetitive bombardment of the image began to show severe cracks in credibility. These discrepancies within the represented result in a heightened need for action. The Iraq war didn't fool any one and both sides are still reeling a little from the shock. While maintaining their anger, people moved on from protest to a collective search for that other, possible world. What might a global democracy look like? Would it be a system with representatives and 'rights,' or rather a dynamic set of events, without higher aims?

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The Brazilian Context 

Many are the social, political or economic problems in Brazil. Socially, there's an extremely unequal distribution of wealth. Such a big social unequality is reflected, for example, in the extreme differences between the center and the periphery in the big cities, regional unequalities, criminality, racism. Besides that, we live in an unnoficial police state that acts in defense of the elites, murdering and arresting poorer citzens, because of the color of their skin or social condition.

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Introduction to the N5M Zapbook 

The Next Five Minutes is a conference, exhibition and tv program that wants to leave behind the rigid dichotomy between the mainstream, commercial and national tv on one hand and  marginal independent tv on the other. Although these differences may still be important, N5M wants to focus on tv-makers crossing the borders of tv-making and going into the spaces that the tv-world still has to offer.

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    A Brief History of the Noborder Network 

    It wasn't exactly the right place nor really the right time to launch a political campaign which publicly called for a series of offenses against the law, yet when the call "No one is illegal" went out exactly five years ago at documentaX, the usual reservations counted little. In the Orangerie which had been temporarily arranged as a media laboratory, at the end of the visitors' course of the well-known Kassler art exhibition, a dozen political and media activists from all Germany's bigger cities met up at the end of June 1997 in order to publish an appeal.

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    Mediate YourSelf! 

    At the end of the third 'Next 5 Minutes' conference on tactical media (March 1999) in Amsterdam, an interesting discussion emerged around the question of how the minor media practices elaborated and highlighted in this vibrant event would ever reach a wider audience for lack of being covered by any mainstream outlet. At one point, some people from the back of the room (unfortunately I don't know anymore who exactly, I believe an Italian group), shouted: 'We don't want to be mediated - we mediate ourselves!'

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