About the Conference

The End of the Open Internet: Surveillance/Copyright/Privacy
Across the Internet, immense changes are affecting ordinary users with urgent implications both worldwide and locally. New Zealand has been the test case for changing practices surrounding copyright, surveillance, sovereignty and privacy.  Recent issues include the so-called ‘PRISM’ program of surveillance, Megaupload, digital free trade agreements, and the three-strikes law, along with broader concerns about governance and control around new mobile and digital technologies. In every instance, such changes threaten to reshape online participation and alter the balance of power between citizen and state, and between open access to information and growing commercial intrusion into private lives. Yet while each of these issues has clear global parallels, these concerns have attracted only limited attention within the New Zealand mediasphere.

The conference is designed to create an engaged, cross-disciplinary and critical dialogue regarding the intensification of control and policing of internet usage, including both commercial activity and democratic participation in New Zealand. This includes international trade relations, the extension of global corporate power, and the role of digital democracy and questions of state power.

We invite submissions for presentations, papers, and preconstituted panels focusing on both regional and international implications of surveillance, copyright, and privacy. All abstracts will be peer-reviewed and published, and there will be other publishing opportunities for selected papers following the conference. While we invite a wide range of academic papers we also welcome proposals from activists, artists, practitioners and stakeholders who represent a spectrum of political perspectives.

Possible topics include, but are not limited to:
·   internet surveillance;
·   the mobilization of the language of terrorism and the policing of the internet;
·   the Te Urewara raids;
·   the three strikes law and the involvement of ISPs in policing users;
·   the Kim Dotcom affair;
·   the relationship between new technologies and shifting practices of surveillance;
·   Digital divides and the left behind;
·   The commodification of users;
·   The attention economy;
·   ICT’s and the grounding of the cloud;
·   Subaltern subversion and dark webs;
·   The new enclosures and the walled garden of web use;
·   Wikileaks;
·   Information bombs and disasters;
·   Or any other issue tied to the broad conference themes.

A range of theoretical perspectives, articulations on the issues, and praxis/case studies are encouraged. Special attention will be given to submissions that challenge or critique existing thinking or practice on these issues.

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Contact the Committee via erika.pearson@otago.ac.nz

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