CALL FOR PAPERS
First Interdisciplinary Research Workshop on Free Culture
Hosted at the fourth annual iSummit, 29 July –1 August, 2008, Sapporo, Japan
With submission deadline: 26 April, 2008
The First Interdisciplinary Research Workshop on Free Culture presents
a unique opportunity for scholars with various backgrounds, whose work
contributes to the promotion or study of an emerging Free Culture, to
present their research work to a multidisciplinary audience of
academic peers and practitioners. It will be held in conjunction with
the fourth iSummit, one of the largest annual events for the Free
Culture and related movements. Our aim is to provide a platform for
scholars to communicate their findings to an audience that extends
beyond individual disciplines because we believe that the wider
participation in the creative process (and consequently in the
formation and dissemination of our modern culture) enabled by new
Internet technologies, innovative legal solutions and new business
models, are far-reaching and therefore deserve to be examined through
the lens of multidisciplinary inquiry.
The focus of the workshop will be on the presentation and critique of
work in progress, and with the inclusion of both academic researchers
and practitioners, so as to produce a holistic perspective on the
future of a more participative, open and free information society.
Workshop participants will have the chance to present their work at an
event which attracts some of the world's foremost thinkers on the
future of the Internet, as well as practitioners, technologists,
activists and artists who help shape that future.
The workshop will be held as a separate 'track' during the iSummit.
True to its mission of promoting the study and practice of
participatory action, it will include both a peer-reviewed academic
research program and a practice-oriented 'demo', or 'speedgeeking'
The academic research programme will consist of presentations in the
traditional format of short talks with time for Q&A. Submissions to
the academic research programme will be peer-reviewed by the programme
committee, based on their academic merit, research promise and
relevance to the workshop's goals and expected audience. Authors need
only submit an extended abstract of the work they wish to present and
not an entire paper (see 'Submission Guidelines' below). The purpose
of this is to encourage the presentation of work in progress and
promote a fruitful and open environment of critique and collaboration.
Accepted abstracts will be published in the form of online workshop
proceedings, so that the broader community has an opportunity to
critique and comment. Authors whose extended abstracts are accepted
for presentation will also have a chance to upload a full paper before
the start of the workshop, if they so desire.
Note that there will be no ideological 'litmus test' of any sort
applied to submissions, i.e. all viewpoints are welcome and
submissions will be judged purely on the merits and promise of the
research as well as the potential for the presentation to generate
interesting discussions at the workshop. Also, please note that
members of the academic programme committee will be allowed to submit
their own work for review but will be subject to exactly the same
review criteria and appropriate safeguards will be in place to ensure
the avoidance of any conflicts of interest.
The demo session will be in a 'speedgeeking' or similar format (quick,
informal presentations on participant laptops) and will focus on
practice-oriented work that is original and relevant to the workshop's
goals but is not intended for a purely academic audience and hence
might not fit the criteria of a peer-reviewed submission. This may
include technology/art demos, case studies, practice-oriented reports,
etc. A separate committee will be in charge of organising this
The workshop will also include opportunities for participants to
discuss future directions for Commons-related research and mingle with
workshop peers and with participants of the broader iSummit, in order
to strengthen ties between research and practice and to allow the
participants to explore cross-institutional collaboration
opportunities. Also, a short presentation of the workshop's main
findings will be made by members of the programme committee during the
Topics of interest for the workshop include, but are not limited to:
* Studies on the use and growth of open/free licensing models;
* Critical analyses of the role of Creative Commons or similar
models in promoting a free culture;
* Building innovative technical, legal or business solutions and
interfaces between the sharing economy and the commercial economy;
* Modelling incentives, innovation and community dynamics in open
collaborative peer production and in related social networks;
* Economic models for the sustainability of Commons-based production;
* Successes and failures of open licensing;
* Analyses of policies, court rulings or industry moves that
influence the future of Free Culture;
* Regional studies of Free Culture;
* Lessons from implementations of open/free licensing and
distribution models for specific communities;
* Definitions of openness and freedom for different media types,
users and communities;
* Broader sociopolitical, legal and cultural implications of Free
Culture initiatives and peer production practices.
* Submission deadline: 26 April, 2008
* Notification of acceptance: 25 May, 2008
* Workshop: 29 July - 1 August, 2008
Extended abstracts for the academic research programme should contain
a clear statement of the main research question, the methods employed,
central ideas, and the outcomes of the research, in addition to a
description of the topic being addressed. All extended abstracts must
be submitted electronically in PDF format to
commons.research(a)gmail.com by April 26, and should be about 1000-1500
words in length. In addition, and beyond the stated size limit, in the
same PDF file authors should include contact information, affiliations
and a short biographical note for each author.
Submission of an abstract entails a commitment that at least one
author will attend the workshop to present the work in the case of
acceptance. Also, authors of abstracts accepted for presentation grant
the workshop organizers the right to publish their submissions in the
form of online proceedings. In addition, and in accordance with
general iSummit terms and conditions, submissions accepted for
presentation will be automatically licensed under a Creative Commons
Attribution 3.0 Unported licence, unless the authors explicitly state
in their submission that they wish to opt out of this licensing
agreement. We encourage authors to use said license, although
decisions to opt out will be respected and will not influence the
review process in any way. In any case, authors of accepted abstracts
cannot opt out from the basic condition that they grant the workshop
organizers the right to publish their submissions online. The same
terms and conditions apply for the case where an author of an accepted
abstract chooses to upload an entire paper before the workshop date
for inclusion in the online proceedings.
For the demo/speedgeeking session(s) it will be possible to register
interest on site at the workshop, but potential presenters are
encouraged to express their interest in advance by submitting a 1-2
page summary of their presentation in PDF format to
commons.demo(a)gmail.com by April 26, illustrating the originality and
relevance of their work. In addition, and beyond the stated size
limit, in the same PDF file authors should include contact
information, affiliations and a short biographical note for each
author. Submitting proposals in advance will greatly help the team in
charge of organising this part of the workshop. The demo committee
will ultimately decide how to organise this session, whether to apply
any terms and conditions for participation, whether to publish online
proceedings of any form, as well as how to ensure that the content
will be relevant and of high quality.
* Jonathan Zittrain, Oxford University, UK
* Tyng-Ruey Chuang, Academia Sinica, Taiwan
* Giorgos Cheliotis, Singapore Management University, Singapore
Academic Programme Committee
The academic programme committee comprises senior scholars, recognised
thought leaders and some promising young scholars. Moreover, it
includes representatives from virtually every part of the world,
reflecting the truly international agenda of the workshop:
* Bodo Balazs, Budapest University of Technology and Economics, Hungary
* Giorgos Cheliotis, Singapore Management University, Singapore
* Tyng-Ruey Chuang, Academia Sinica, Taiwan
* Juan Carlos De Martin, NEXA Center for Internet & Society, Italy
* Melanie Dulong de Rosnay, Berkman Center for Internet & Society, USA
* Brian Fitzgerald, Queensland University of Technology, Australia
* Rishab Ghosh, UNU-MERIT, the Netherlands
* James Grimmelmann, New York Law School, USA
* Lucie Guibault, University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands
* Herkko Hietanen, Helsinki Institute for Information Technology, Finland
* Mathias Klang, Lund University, Sweden
* Ronaldo Lemos, Fundacao Getulio Vargas, Brazil
* Lawrence Lessig, Stanford University, USA
* Lawrence Liang, Alternative Law Forum, India
* Lev Manovich, University of California San Diego, USA
* Lisa Petrides, Institute for the Study of KM in Education, USA
* Anil Samtani, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
* Jan Philipp Schmidt, UWC/UNU-MERIT, the Netherlands
* Elizabeth Stark, Berkman Center for Internet & Society, USA
* Alek Tarkowski, University of Warsaw, Poland
* Anas Tawileh, Cardiff University, UK
* Prodromos Tsiavos, London School of Economics, UK
* Kim Tucker, Meraka Institute, South Africa
* Ariel Vercelli, Universidad Nacional de Quilmes, Argentina
* Jonathan Zittrain, Oxford University, UK
The team in charge of organising the demo/speedgeeking session
consists of people who are making outstanding contributions towards
the promotion of a Free Culture in technology, legal practice and the
* Jessica Coates, Queensland University of Technology, Australia
* Kevin Driscoll, MIT, USA
* Mike Linksvayer, Creative Commons, USA
* Jon Phillips, Creative Commons, USA and China
* Elizabeth Stark, Berkman Center for Internet & Society, USA
If you have questions, ideas for special sessions we should host
during the workshop, or wish to assist with the organisation of the
workshop, please subscribe to the commons-research mailing list at
http://lists.ibiblio.org/mailman/listinfo/commons-research and send
your emails to commons-research(a)lists.ibiblio.org.
They've just been waiting in a mountain for the right moment:
Hello everyone, I thought some folks might be interested in:
Wikipedia, "the free encyclopedia anyone can edit," has caught the attention
of the world. Discourse about the efficacy and legitimacy of this
collaborative work abound, from the news pages of "The New York Times" to
the satire of "The Onion." So how might we understand Wikipedia
collaboration? In part 1 I argue that Wikipedia is an heir to a twentieth
century vision of universal access and goodwill; an idea advocated by H. G.
Wells and Paul Otlet almost a century ago. This vision is inspired by
technological innovation -- microfilm and index cards then, digital
networks today -- and driven by the encyclopedic compulsion to capture and
index everything known. In addition, I place Wikipedia within the history
of reference works, focusing on their (often fervent) creators, and the
cooperation, competition, and plagiarism encountered in their production.
In part 2, I conceptualize Wikipedia as a technologically mediated "open"
community; through ethnography I identify the norms, practices and meanings
of Wikipedia culture including "Neutral Point of View," good faith, and
authorial leadership. In particular, I use the metaphor of a jigsaw puzzle
to explain the operation of Wikipedia's collaborative culture: "Neutral
Point of View" ensures that the scattered pieces of what we think we know
can be joined and good faith facilitates the actual practice of fitting
them together. Finally, in part 3 I focus on the cultural reception and
interpretation of Wikipedia. I argue that in the history of reference works
Wikipedia is not alone in serving as a flashpoint for larger social
anxieties about technological and social change. I try to make sense of the
social unease embodied in and prompted by Wikipedia by way of four themes
present throughout the dissertation: collaborative practice, universal
vision, encyclopedic impulse, and technological inspiration. I show that
the discourse around Wikipedia reveals concerns about how new forms of
technologically mediated content production are changing the role and
autonomy of the individual, the authority of existing institutions, and the
character (and quality) of cultural products.
Thank you, I will definitely keep you all updated.
I decided to ask people not to take administrative edits (what would be
a better term to include all "maintenance") or grammatical corrections,
but not to rule out anything else. Even if an edit is not a major one, I
suppose it is interesting to know where the tiny bits of information
originated. Sure the by far most interesting question at this stage
relates to writing whole articles.
I supposed that if people are contributing on their profession related
topics they are unlikely to do specific information seeking and/or they
rely on their professional sources and especially experience. It is a
separate issue from seeking or not, but I assume that it affects a whole
lot the way information is sought. This is of course speculation at this
point and I hope I can discuss this in more detail when I have the
results in my hand.
best wishes and thank you for very good comments,
> Isto, This sounds like really interested work, on a topic I am
> especially fascinated by :) Please do keep us up to date when you have
> some results or conclusions. I have two comments and a question after
> looking at the survey. 1) You might want to define "administrative
> edits" a bit better. I assume that you only want people to discuss
> substantial edits to an article's content, not minor edits, edits to
> project or user space, etc. 2) I don't understand how this question:
> "I never contribute to Wikipedia on my profession related topics"
> relates to information-seeking -- whether people contribute in areas
> related to their profession seems like a separate issue from whether
> they go looking for information or not. A question: would it be
> worthwhile asking where people looked for information? Printed books,
> other websites, newspapers, etc. "Information seeking" is very broad
> and vague and can encompass many behaviors. best, -- Phoebe On Thu,
> Mar 13, 2008 at 5:52 AM, Isto Huvila <isto.huvila(a)abo.fi> wrote:
>> > Dear All,
>> > I am currently engaged in conducting research on Wikipedia users'
>> > information behaviour and especially the information sources and
>> > services used in contributions.
>> > The purpose of this survey is to map information sources used in writing
>> > and editing Wikipedia articles. The survey is a part of the research
>> > project "Information service 2.0" conducted by myself (Department of
>> > Information Studies, ?bo Akademi University, Finland) as a part of the
>> > Academy of Finland research project "Library 2.0 - a new participatory
>> > context".
>> > The individual answers will be processed strictly confidential, the data
>> > will not be handed over to any third parties or to non-academic use and
>> > all informants will remain strictly anynomous.
>> > Survey URL
>> > http://survey-3.istohuvila.fi/index.php?sid=62924&lang=en
>> > More information about the project may be found at
>> > http://www.istohuvila.fi/library-20
>> > http://www.library2pointoh.fi
>> > Best Regards,
>> > Isto Huvila
>> > --
>> > Ph.D., research fellow, lecturer
>> > Information Studies :: ?bo Akademi University
>> > (w) +358-2-2153467 (m) +358-40-5726259
>> > (e) isto.huvila(a)abo.fi (w3) www.istohuvila.fi
>> > _______________________________________________
>> > Wiki-research-l mailing list
>> > Wiki-research-l(a)lists.wikimedia.org
>> > https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wiki-research-l
> -- - phoebe s. ayers | phoebe.ayers(a)gmail.com
(This is a forwarded email from foundation-l list.)
After the third "experiment" on sr.wp, I have to say that cooperation
between particular professors, their students and one of Wikimedia
projects is working very well.
The first project started with professors Cvetana Krstev and Dusko
Vitas from Mathematical and Philological faculties in Belgrade. As I
am not involved in that project (and I don't know for details), I will
skip it. I only know that a number of students' works in computational
linguistics were published on Serbian Wikipedia.
The second was initiated by professor Slobdan Macura (a Wikipedian,
too), who asked me to make a presentation of Wikipedia to students of
the third and the fourth year of physical chemistry. This cooperation
gave to us a number of very good articles about chemistry of proteins
. While half of them are translated from the English Wikipedia, the
rest are original encyclopedic works made by students. For example, an
article about Anfinsen's dogma is much better in Serbian  than in
When I started to finish my studies in linguistics (last September), I
found that some of my professors are interested in adapting their own
rules to contribution to Wikipedia. The best cooperation I made with
my professor in sociolinguistics, Jelena Filipovic. Her students have
to make three types of works: three short forms, usually what a
student thinks about something, one longer form on what student thinks
about one of specific texts and a seminar work, which should be the
(By accident, at the same time Linguistlist called linguists to
contribute articles in sociolinguistics.)
Professor's and mine first target was to change three short forms to
three articles. Almost a half of the students (something less than 20
of something more than 40) opted in to that change. And not only that:
a couple of them opted to change their seminar work to one longer
A week ago the first short forms were finished. Two students sent to
me articles. Yesterday I started to analyze them in depth. And I have
to say that articles are real success! I processed the first three
articles and here is the report:
- Dialect atlas (or "Linguistic map" -- two names for the same term).
Article in Serbian  is much longer than article in English .
- Linguistic interview. Article in Serbian exists , while article
in English doesn't exist.
- Language variable (a fairly important linguistic term) now exists in
Serbian , but doesn't exist in English.
The main consequence of such work is that we are able to move our sum
of knowledge at the next level. While a number of smaller Wikipedias
have problems with very basic articles, which may be covered by high
school students, thanks to such cooperation we are able to put into
Wikipedia more specific knowledge.
* * *
However, the situation is not sustainable. While I am able and I am
willing to work with some number of professors, I am not able cover
even my faculty alone. While initiating cooperation is a time
consuming task, it is a temporary task. I am willing to spend a couple
of weeks or a couple of months in making a cooperation alive, but when
an initiation of cooperation is finished, I may start do work on other
However, if I have to take care separately about all groups all the
time, I would be able to work with five or ten groups, but not much
Instead of that kind of organization, I think that it would be much
better to make some kind of a global "academic network for Wikimedia".
For the first time it should be one network for sharing resources: to
explain how to find priorities for writing articles, to make some
comprehensive manuals for professors and students, to show to
professors and students how to find an online help as well as how to
find real-life help.
Also, such network may be very useful for professors and students:
While at the first time such network would be able to connect a
linguist from Serbia with a biologist from Germany (which is not so
useful), as time is passing, this network would be able to make
connections between people who are working on the same topics.
Actually, if people from Linguistlist (those who already made calls
for contributing to Wikipedia) are interested in joining to such
network, we will already make the first connections between linguists.
* * *
I am not sure was here a similar talk. However, I know that Wikimedian
community has a number of university professors and other experts. And
those professors and experts should be the front persons of such
network. Of course, I am willing to help, but we need to make a group
of relevant people who would attract other professors and experts to
join the group (and groups in the future).
* * *
There is one anecdote about Stalin. Some of the persons in charge for
foreign relations came to him:
- An emissary from Vatican came. What should we do?
- How many tanks do they have?
- Take them away!
So, whenever someone came with an idea to add some number of articles
to Serbian Wikipedia, I was making jokes which were beginning with
"How many tanks do thay have?" -- in the sense of a number of
articles, of course.
While it is obvious that 10 good articles are much better than 100
bad, it is, also, obvious that we have to find a way how to make a
"mass production" of good articles. When I say "mass production", I
think about a systematic effort for improving quality of our project.
And if there are three articles covered systematically by students on
Serbian Wikipedia which are better than corresponding three articles
on English Wikipedia (actually, two of them don't exist), then it is
obvious that all Wikipedias need such systematic effort.
I presented above my idea for making such systematic effort. It came
to my mind yesterday, which means that it is far from a rounded idea.
I didn't even thought about other possibilities. So, a question for
discussion here is: Do you have some better idea? Does such thing
exist? Do you think that this idea is good enough for implementation?
If so, are there people (especially professors and experts) who are
willing to participate?
* * *
 - The list of articles and students who made them is here:
 - http://sr.wikipedia.org/wiki/%D0%90%D0%BD%D1%84%D0%B8%D0%BD%D1%81%D0%B5%D0%…
 - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anfinsen%27s_dogma
 - http://sr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dijalektolo%C5%A1ki_atlas
 - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dialect_atlas
 - http://sr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intervju_(lingvistika)
 - http://sr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jezi%C4%8Dka_varijacija