Short Review of My Year 2008

This year reminds me of year 2000. People expecting “millennium bug", in the end the bug-o-mighty didn’t show up. And coming along it with the dotcom crash, burst of the bubbles. But no matter how reminding it is, the year 2008 for me in Taiwan is so unique that I will never forget.

This is the year of economic recession of the whole world. After showing up in the foreign media, the financial glacier is directly entering our life, swallowed hug amount of asset, money, and jobs, leaving us still coming black hole of emptiness. The most terrible moment is the layoff of George Oates, the guest speaker of our Culturemondo Roundtable Meeting in Taipei, she is the original Flickr staff before Yahoo! purchased the web 2.0 star, and the key person in inspiring project Flickr Commons. The storm is influencing the friends around us, especially for such a peripheral role of the world (esp. neglected in UN) in Taiwan.

In year 2008, KMT is coming back to rule again after 8 years of ruling under DPP, Democratic Progressive Party. It changes a lot in every part of life in Taiwan, too. Very serious. Through DPP didn’t do a good job in past governance, but KMT is bring back and generate a lot of new issues in every aspect of our social / economical / political life. As Jerry had mentioned in his blog, we are facing a great era of our own “Great Transformation".

I had a completion in my job / work in year 2008. That is amazing. With friends / collaborators like Charles, Lo, Mengshan, Wilson, Joy, and a lot of other friends like Slime & the association etc., I had finished the roundtable event planning and execution. It’s really a great work!!! We had invited 30+ people all over the world coming to Taiwan, including important centers, institutes, great minds to gather and discuss about the future of online culture content, resources and services. The preparation work could be traced back to 1 year ago, and 5 of us of International Steering Committee gathered in Brighton, UK did a wonderful job in settling down the core tone and dynamics of the digital culture and heritage roundtable. Thanks you all again in joining us and make this roundtable a best ever experience for me and all of us.

Besides the preparation trip to Brighton, I had 2 other international trips to Nagoya, Japan and Queenstown, New Zealand. Those trips are a continuation of collaboration with ALFAE Foundation, Japan in APAN eCulture Working Group. We had a perfect 2 days workshop in Nagoya, impressed by Japanese agricultural innovation and worked on the future of eCulture, and APAN Meeting in New Zealand I was elected as the APAN eCulture Working Group (ECWG) co-chair. Great Malaysian and Japanese colleagues had organized wonderful meetings in New Zealand, for instance, NZ’s secondlife
/opensim educational applications had opened up my ideas toward Secondlife. Indirectly influence my suggestion to Charles on arranging a local Secondlife workshop in this TechnoCulture Expo event, parallel event of Culturemondo Roundtable Meeting.

Year 2008 is also my year of reunion with old friends, and meeting new friends. Danny Butt in New Zealand, Graham Harwood, Saul Albert, Dr. Matthew Fuller and Olga in London. Ravikant in India, Shahidul in Bangladesh. In this roundtable meeting I got a lot of old and new friends, like 陳泰穎 in TELDAP, Joyce from NDHU, Hongjohn and Manray 😀

Year 2008 is full of bad news of friends with illness, but also with the inspiring updates of people fighting back. Eric in NCTU got cancer and he started a cancer diary. Shashiwati is getting better when back to India. Geert had gone through a heart surgery. Etc. Those information really shocks me. Year 2008 is also a year for me and June start rechecking the health aspect of our life. My best mentor, friend, Steve Cisler passed away May 15, 2008. I had connected with Ted again and shared the total feeling of other people toward him, the figure and my best role model as an independent researcher/thinktank. Those of us who connected would have a precious chance to review ourselves, our lives, to cherish the wonderful part and inspire again.

CHANGE. Year 2008 is the year of Obama. Because he not only speaks to his fellow Americans, but also to other parts of the world listening to the radio in remote areas. Through I didn’t follow much on his campaign and his success and after, I still think he is the best present for everyone in the world (so far). He is the poetic symbol of CHANGE. “As the long time coming…." We all deserved a good chance of CHANGE and bright future, as the long time coming.

Happy New Year 2009, my friends.

The Disappeared As Witness 《消失的中時工人》

Not only people, but also jobs, production process, union, and media company disappeared in this video clip. It functioned like a sad, but quiet witness, smoking alone at the corner of a bar. Only when you talked and listened to her, you found so much important memory and a lot of details of social identity was embedded in the photos.


剛剛閱讀中祥寄來、finimay 所撰寫的〈什麼是公共?(採訪篇) 〉,為國民黨立委與公共電視之間的鬥爭多增加了一篇詳細的解說,敬請參考。之前羅世宏老師(〈公視問題,藍綠皆有責〉)與魏玓、劉昌德老師(〈重建公視監督體制〉)兩篇文章也擲地有聲地把論述面的重點突顯出來。

然而在運動面上,我比較覺得缺乏一種多樣化的運動策略來加以平衡。對於底層的民眾,他們總是想要保持想像中的中立,希望能夠不偏頗任何一方地收集資訊、儘可能地做出判斷。在《新新聞》本次爭議的報導(汪仁玠,〈畸形公廣 深陷政治泥淖〉)中,讀者看到了想要「收集」的公廣集團負面資訊,我們也可以假設性的推估,這也呈現了國民黨立委們所採取行動的「輿論基礎」。


對此有幾種可能:(1) 削弱立委諸公所代言的民意代表性,拒絕他們作為「監督」適切的代表。這可以透過審視公廣集團的定位、憲法層面的立委提案違憲問題,這類爭議是否需透過立法院所確立其基礎的機關 NCC 來做裁決,而同時其民意基礎與立院立委選舉版圖更替之間的關係,這些將處理這個代表性的外部基礎;而立委們內部立場、歷史記錄、黨派色彩等內部的矛盾與差異,應該被標示出來被民眾公開審視,這個取徑將從內部削弱其所宣稱的代表性。(2) 呈現公廣集團的內部矛盾與差異,工會立場與高層態度是否一致?公視與華視,以及其他電視台,對於這個事件的態度是如何?歷史因素如何影響現前的立場選擇,以及對之後的影響?主管機關又跟公廣集團之間有著什麼樣的矛盾與裂縫,需要在這樣的運動當中被縫補、修復或者擴大、撕裂? (3) 一般民眾跟這樣的提案之間,有什麼樣的關連?民眾將被迫付出什麼樣的代價?有沒有可能從這樣的觀點中生產對基層民眾的說帖?公廣集團需要對民眾再做出什麼樣的努力,證明自己與他們(尤其是選擇噤聲、支持國民黨立委提案的民眾)的生活息息相關?


[Updated] 運動者與科技 vs. 創新與社會責任:跨領域設計的挑戰

今天晚上 7 點到 10 點要去世新大學管理學院 201 演講廳,參加社發所的講座:〈當運動者面對科技:致勝的策略〉(Activists Confront Technology: Winning Strategies),由 STS 界非常有名的 Langdon Winner(技術哲學家,Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute 科學與技術研究講座教授)主講。

明天中午他會到清華社會所/科技與社會研究中心有一個小演講/座談,講題是:〈創新與社會責任:跨領域設計的挑戰〉(Innovation and Social Responsibility: The Challenge of Interdisciplinary Design),時間是 12/19(週五)中午12:15-14:00 (備有簡單餐點),地點在:清華大學人社院 C306 研討室。歡迎有興趣繼續跟他對話的朋友,以及在新竹對科技與社會有興趣的朋友來參加!

[Updated] 專題演講講者介紹(陳信行撰寫):

Langdon Winner 是國際知名技術政治哲學家,也是ST(Science and TachnologyStudies)領域的創始者之一。目前擔任Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI)STS學系教授以及校級Thomas P. Phelan 講座教授。

他於1960年代就讀於柏克萊政治系、政治所,主攻古典政治哲學,1973年獲博士學位。在他同代的美國批判政治哲學論者一面倒地吸取從批判理論到後結構主義等頂尖歐陸思潮時,Winner 選擇一種可說是「本土路線」的治學風格,從美國社會史中的各種論述與現象吸取養分,從而發現「技術」是美國政治傳統的關鍵課題。這使他與同時代其他領域關注科學與技術問題的學者合流,共同打造了STS領域。他於1980年發表的論文〈技術物有政治性嗎?〉(“Do Artifacts Have Politics?") 被認為是當代技術研究(TechnologyStudies) 的奠基性著作之一。

Winner於1990-1992擔任Society of Philosophy of Technology會長,歷年來並擔任過許多專業組織的幹部職位。他長年筆耕不輟,除了大量學術著作外,於MIT出版的Technology Review上維持著專欄寫作,並時常於其他非專業的報章雜誌發表政治哲學與技術哲學的評論,也時常就科技與社會的議題接受媒體訪問或於美國國會聽證會擔任專家證人,是STS領域中的公共知識份子典型之一。

Winner於1990-1992擔任Society of Philosophy of Technology會長,歷年來並擔任過許多專業組織的幹部職位。他長年筆耕輟,除了大量學術著作外,於MIT出版的Technology Review上維持著專欄寫作,並時常於其他非專業的報章雜誌發表政治哲學與技術哲學的評論,也時常就科技與社會的議題接受媒體訪問或於美國國會聽證會擔任專家證人,是STS領域中的公共知識份子典型之一。

Winner於1990年代中開始與Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute的工學院與建築學院同事們合作發展「設計研究」的教學與實踐,試圖把STS知識與實際的工程實踐結合。目前已建立 Center for Cultural Design 作為設計研究的核心機構。

學術生活之外,Langdon Winner 近年來熱心以公民(而非專家)身份投身哈德遜河谷的環保運動。他同時是著名搖滾樂評論人,1970年代初曾任職 Rolling Stone 雜誌,目前在樂評方面依然撰述不輟。

此次Langdon Winner應世新社會發展研究所邀請來台講學,並應邀在台大INSIGHT中心針對工程與社會實踐的議題,進行專題演講與圓桌論壇,與台灣的工程界、設計界、社會學、STS研究進行實質的跨領域激盪,精彩可期,歡迎各界共襄盛舉。

Geert’s video interview in Culturemondo Roundtable

在這次的 Culturemondo Roundtable 圓桌會議中,我們特別有請唐瑋(Joy Tang)與林筱芳(Hsiaofang Lin)協助我們進行會場中平行進行的訪談 Podcast 製作。以這次的專題演講講者之一的 Geert Lovink 為例,他介紹了自己的背景跟他所在這次會議中扮演的角色。

在這次的會議中,他的演講主題:「超越社會性網路服務的線上生活:Web 2.0 批判導論」提供了幾年內快速深陷 Google、Facebook、MySpace 等社會網路服務(SNSs)的人們一個反省審視的批判觀點;尤其對於文化與文化遺產領域的機構還正在思考,要不要跟隨這個潮流加入浪潮中的時候,Geert 的作法是把眼前的這些景緻,與全球金融危機與經濟衰退連結起來作理論/實踐上整體性的詮釋。

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發起人:陳柏中 e-mail: