Monthly Archives: September 2006
It’s out – and they want full papers – due February 14th, 2007. Read below for more details.
Papers and panel proposals are invited for the third Digital GamesResearch Association International Conference (DiGRA 2007) in Tokyo. Thetheme of this conference is “Situated Play.” Its goal is to shed lighton various kinds of situatedness of games. In particular, the conferenceaims to create a bridge between professionally and geographicallydiverse scholars and practitioners. We therefore welcome panel proposalsand papers that tackle various facets regarding the situatedness ofdigital games and attempt to combine a range of approaches in innovativeways.
The deadline for papers and panel proposals is midnight (Apia time),February 14, 2007. The selection will be based on full papers and panelproposals. The time allotted to one paper is 30 minutes, and thesubmitted papers should be between 2500 to 6000 words and an abstractmust be attached. A panel session will have two hours, and a panelproposal should be up to 800 words in addition to all the full papers inthe panel. Authors and organizers of panels will be requested tospecify a relevant thematic focus (see below) and their relevantdisciplinary backgrounds. Submission will be accepted by an onlinereview system. Practical details of submission will be announced on theconference website in January.
Based on the abstracts and the specified disciplinary backgrounds, theReview Committee Chair Douglas Thomas will assign papers and panelproposals to a Review Committee member, who will assign three or morereviewers to the paper. Based on the double-blind evaluation of thereviewers and taking the relevance of the papers to the conference theme into consideration, the Program Committee will select approximately 50 papers.
In addition to full papers, there will be lightening sessions, studentround tables, and poster sessions. A call for papers for these kinds ofsessions will be announced later. The deadline of submissions for thesesessions is planned to be in May. Further details of the conference willbe announced on the conference website (http://www.gamesconference.org)as the preparation proceeds. For inquiries, contact Kenji Ito atkenjiito67 [at] gmail.com.
There has been alot of discussion about the nature of the cyberspace. With it’s boundaries between public and private blurred, cyberspace – for some, is a city made of glass houses where curtains and blinds have yet to be invented. Indeed, some have locks on their doors, but more often than not, the peephole is still big enough to get the jist of what goes on.
With the popularity of visual social softwares such as Flickr, the question of public and private is kept alive. Back in the day, it was always my impression that one could not publish a photograph of someone without their permission. To be fair, I believe this was a relatively contrived law reserved for the rich and famous, since we have regularly been bombarded by dying children and injured people across the globe, and something tells me that their consent wasn’t quite obtained before becoming ‘national geographic’s’ most famous photograph. (And who has been caught in the flash in the background of a sports scene splashed across the front of the sports pages without their permission…) But I will continue nonetheless.
If I take photographs at a party, for my personal use, they often remain a private collection, shared only with my limited circle of friends. When these pictures are shared, they are usually contextualized for the viewer by my stories surrounding the event of the picture being taken. I have even been known to speed through or even hide a photograph once in a while due to its personal or simply embarrassing nature (come on – we have all had bad camera angles!!). I have even had friends ask me specifically not to share a particular photograph with others.
So – this brings me to my beef du jour. Why is it perfectly acceptable for people to post every single picture they have ever taken online in a very public, and poorly if at all, contextualized space? From both a personal and legal standpoint, why are the people in the pictures not asked their permission to be billboarded? What makes it ethical to blatantly splash photographs of people across the internet. What I find interesting is that more often than not, the person actually posting the photographs arent even in the picture – so in theory, their own identity is not compromised in any way (if only by association to the events depicted in the image). What makes it different in people’s mind to post these images online but not publish them in a magazine – or put the other way – why do people who post these (private) images in such a public space without conferring with those individuals in the picture? Has our perception of public and private become so entertwined that we no longer see an ethical issue here?
In noticing the hypocrisy of my post speaking out against posting pictures online without individuals’ consent, I have removed the post including the link to pictures to the CGSA. It only made sense.
The first morning of the CGSA has passed, and I have been trying to keep notes. I have been doing so over at www.gamecode.ca/blog if you couldn’t attend but want to see what’s going on.
I leave tomorrow for Toronto, to attend an inaugral workshop/conference for the Canadian Game Studies Association. An association still in development, it is supposed to be a government funded opportunity to meet other scholars across our nation and see what the others are up to in terms of studying video games. Here is a schedule of the presentations if anyone is interested.
As I head into writing my thesis – a project that I had been working towards for the last almost 4 years now, what seemed to be a relatively easy task (i mean, this is what i have been working towards over the years, with every paper and every project) has now turned into a relatively monumental roadblock. Not because I don’t know what my thesis is on, but because unlike every other project I have done so far, I have to present a 20 page proposal on what i intend to do.
The thing is, I know what i plan to do, but the way i write, often a mix between organic birth and rigid outlines doesn’t quite cater to the idea of writing a proposal from start to finish of what it is i plan to uncover in the forthcoming pages.
I am currently working on a power point for a workshop we are presenting at the upcoming Canadian Game Studies Association inaugral meeting next week in Toronto. Without getting into the details I am essentially making three statements about my topic of interest and developing them briefly in terms of their abstract elements and concretizing the statement with an examplary anecdote from personal experience or my field notes (preferrably). But I keep stumbling on one… seemingly minor… potentially major detail. When I am writing about identity, who’s identity am I talking about? And in what context? I have many answers – and I know what i DON’T want to be talking about… mainly the psychological development of identity.
But at times, my writing is around the player and other times it is the avatar. Originally, my goal was to discuss the relationship between the player and their avatar – and how it is similar and/or different than other abstract relationships. But quite honestly, the more I think, the more I confuse myself. The more questions I attempt to answer, the more questions I end up with.
So, when I am telling people at the CGSA that the process of identity construction in mmog’s is a complex, interlocking web of negotiation between player/avatar, avatar/environment, avatar/avatar, avatar/player and finally player/player – it remains unclear who’s identity I am talking about. In some respects, I do mean the player’s and in other times, I mean the avatar… So how do i remedy this ambiguous ownership of identity by the time my thesis is due in January?
Today was the last day for WOXY’s broadcast. As I sit here listening to the sound of nothingness through my speakers, I am saddened. WOXY has not only entertained me during my late nights of academic toil it, introduced me to a wealth of new music that I had lost much faith in. For many years, I had been content listening to the music I had grown up with, not hearing much in the way of new music that appealed to me. Until I started listening to WOXY. Pinback, Ted Leo and the Pharmacists, Rilo Kiley, Aqueduct, even Franz Ferdinand before they hit the indie bigtime – to name only a few artists I have fell in love with. All this to say, I do not welcome this imposed sound of silence.
A good friend of mine is currently in Toronto for the International Film Festival. She is a writer and has been blogging the ‘real’ event for a local print magazine here in Montreal. You can read her insights , here, here and here. After all the Entertainment Tonight, Star Daily and other deadly serious entertainement news, it is nice to read a fresh approach. Keep up the good work Celia.
I logged into to listen to my favorite internet (once terrestial) radio station WOXY.com to see the letter of doom posted on their front page. Although it was not a surprise – listeners knew that the days of great music and rockin’ dj’s were numbered do to the refusal to turn to corporate funding – I guess I just never thought it would be this soon. It is times like this I wish that I had Bill Gates’ bank account. Who wouldnt want an kick ass radio station on their list of things supported.
WOXY has been what has revived my interest in independent music. As I have gotten older, I had settled into listening to my music collection of yesteryear, begrudging most new music I heard. But what WOXY showed me wasnt that the tuneage of today sucked, but that I was hearing it in all the wrong places. Thanks to dj’s who have been on the job for several decades, following the new and independent music scene, I was introduced to new music selected by old and wise ears.
The airwaves will go silent September 15th. From that day forward, work will never be the same – who will i listen to while sitting at my desk for long hours typing and toiling away? Any (non satellite) suggestions for a new audio home, please let me know. Otherwise, my usual garb of black will carry a tad of symbolic sadness.