James T. Hamilton, Hearst Professor of Communication, Stanford University
Demystifying Investigative Reporting’s Future: Stories by, through, and about algorithms
Thursday, January 18, 4–5 p.m., 141 Allen Hall
Changes in media markets have put local investigative reporting particularly at risk. But new combinations of data and algorithms may make it easier for journalists to discover and tell the stories that hold institutions accountable. Based on his book Democracy’s Detectives: The Economics of Investigative Journalism, Professor Hamilton explores how the future of accountability reporting will involve stories by, through, and about algorithms.
Dr. James Hamilton is the Hearst Professor of Communication, Director, of the Journalism Program and Director of Undergraduate Studies in Communication at Stanford University. Prior to joining the Stanford faculty, Hamilton taught at Duke University’s Sanford School of Public Policy, where he directed the De Witt Wallace Center for Media and Democracy.
He earned a BA in Economics and Government (summa cum laude) and PhD in Economics from Harvard University.
Alan Abbey, MS ’77, Shalom Hartman Institute
Israeli Media and Threats to Israeli Press Freedoms
J100: Media Professions, Thursday, November 16, 2–3 p.m., 150 Columbia Hall
Alan D. Abbey is director of media at the Shalom Hartman Institute in Jerusalem, which he joined in 2008 after a 30-year career in journalism in the United States and Israel. He holds a master’s degree in journalism from the SOJC. He founded Ynetnews and was executive vice president at the Jerusalem Post. He is also an adjunct professor of Journalism at National University of San Diego and ethics lecturer for the Getty School of Citizen Journalism in the Middle East and North Africa. He was a leader of the Online News Association’s digital ethics team, which created the “Build Your Own” Ethics Code course and website, and he chaired the Hartman Institute-American Jewish Press Association Ethics Project. He is the author of Journey of Hope: The Story of Ilan Ramon, Israel’s First Astronaut. A native of Brooklyn, New York, Abbey lives in Jerusalem with his wife and three children.
Israeli journalists are among the most aggressive, intense, politicized, opinionated, and competitive media professionals anywhere. They differ from American media in significant ways. This talk will look at this landscape and threats to press freedoms in Israel, as well as the media’s responses to these challenges.
Sara Wachter-Boettcher, BA ’05, Rare Union
Sexist Apps, Biased Algorithms, and Toxic Tech
J201: Media and Society, Monday, November 13, 8:30–9:30 a.m., 156 Straub Hall
Sara Wachter-Boettcher is a content strategy and user experience expert who has worked on the web since she graduated from the SOJC (Magazine, 2005). As the principal of Rare Union, she’s led projects and facilitated workshops for Fortune 100 corporations, education and research institutions, and startups. Her new book, Technically Wrong: Sexist Apps, Biased Algorithms, and Other Threats of Toxic Tech, looks at the way technologists often embed a narrow worldview into the products they build, providing a revealing look at how tech industry bias and blind spots get baked into digital products—and harm us all.
In this talk she will explore some of the key themes from her book, and the impact of technology on society and consumers.
Troy Campbell, Assistant Professor, University of Oregon Lundquist College of Business
Why People “Fly from Facts”
J412: Fact or Fiction? Thursday, November 2, 12–1 p.m., 141 Allen Hall
Troy Campbell is a design psychologist, which means he uses psychology to design better experiences, communications, and education. He is an expert in consumer behavior, marketing social psychology, political psychology, and scientific communication. Campbell’s research uses psychology to understand what makes people happy, how social movements can be effective, the power of advertising, what makes a good experience (such as a music festival), and consumerism.
His talk will explore how—and why—people get away from facts that contradict their beliefs, and how to design communications and a society that leads us all back to truth.
C. W. Anderson, Associate Professor of Media and Culture, College of Staten Island, City University of New York
Where Data Journalism Comes From
Monday, May 15, 6–7 p.m., 141 Allen Hall
C. W. Anderson is an associate professor at the College of Staten Island (CUNY) and incoming professor of media and communication at the University of Leeds.
He is the author of Rebuilding the News: Metropolitan Journalism in the Digital Age and Journalism: What Everyone Needs to Know (co-authored with former Washington Post Executive Editor Len Downie and sociologist Michael Schudson), which has been described as “an accessible, sweeping survey of the past, present, and future of journalism.”
Anderson is currently at work on a book tentatively titled Apostles of Certainty: Data Journalism and the Politics of Truth (Oxford), which examines the relationship between material evidence, computational processes, and notions of “context” from 1910 until the present. He is currently starting a project that he calls The Dark Publics project to explore “opaque algorithms, political lies, emotions, narratives, self-delusional stories, and aesthetically interpreted facts.”
Anderson is on campus Monday, May 15, through Tuesday, May 16, and then in Portland until May 17.
Stacy-Marie Ishmael, Knight Fellow, Former Managing Editor for Mobile, BuzzFeed News
The “Flattening” of News and Its Consequences for Trust (Or, How Designers and Developers Have Made It Harder to Tell Real from Fake)
Wednesday, May 3, 4:30–5:30 p.m., Allen 141
Stacy-Marie Ishmael is a John S. Knight Fellow at Stanford University. She will be spending the 2016–17 academic year researching the challenges newsrooms face in adapting to the rise of the mobile-only audience. Prior to this fellowship, she was the managing editor of mobile news for BuzzFeed News, running the BuzzFeed News app and morning newsletter, and overseeing a team of news editors in New York, Los Angeles, and London.
Before joining BuzzFeed News, she was the vice president of communities at the Financial Times, where she led a team responsible for growing engagement and deepening the publication’s relationship with its global audiences. Her previous roles at the FT included FT Alphaville New York bureau chief and co-founder and editor of FT Tilt, an online-only emerging markets news service. Ishmael was born and raised in Trinidad, in the Caribbean, and received her undergraduate degree in international relations from the London School of Economics.
Ishmael will also be a 2017 SOJC Journalist in Residence. She will be on campus, meeting with students and faculty Tuesday, May 2, through Thursday, May 4 (lunchtime).
Christopher Ali, Assistant Professor, University of Virginia
The Future of Local Newspapers
Friday, March 10, 10:30-11:30 a.m., Allen Hall 141
Christopher Ali’s research interests focus on communication policy and regulation, critical political economy, critical geography, comparative media systems, localism, and local news.
Ali has published in numerous journals, including Communication Theory, Media Culture & Society, and International Journal of Communication. His forthcoming book, Media Localism: The Policies of Place (University of Illinois Press, 2017), addresses the difficulties of defining and regulating local media in the 21st century in the United States, United Kingdom, and Canada and the implications these difficulties have for the long-term viability of local news.
Ali has worked for the Federal Communications Commission, submitted research for the Swiss Office of Communication, and consulted with the South Korean Committee on the Impact of Media Concentration. He holds a Ph.D. from Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania; an M.A. in media Studies from Concordia University, Canada; and a B.A. in film and media studies and sociology from the University of Alberta.
Sex, Surveillance, and Shopping: How the Arabian Gulf Uses Social Media
Friday, March 3, 10:30–11:30 a.m., 141 Allen Hall
Sarah Vieweg is a social scientist whose research is at the intersection of human-computer interaction, computer-mediated communication, and computer-supported cooperative work. She researches how citizens of Arab Gulf countries perceive, use, and re-interpret social media, with an eye toward defining design principles that consider non-Western cultural values. She also looks at how advertisers throughout the world turn to social media for advertising and marketing, and how diverse marketplace activities translate to digital environments.
Vieweg holds a BA in economics and French from the University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign, an M.A in linguistics from the University of Colorado Boulder, and a Ph.D. in technology, media, and society from the University of Colorado, Boulder. Prior to her position at Facebook, she was a scientist at the Qatar Computing Research Institute and a project manager at Oblong Industries.
Nikki Usher, George Washington University
Hackers, Data and Code in the Age of Trump
Thursday, February 23, 10:30-11:30 a.m., Diamond Lake Room, EMU
What does Trump’s election mean for data journalism? Nikki Usher will discuss her new book, Interactive Journalism: Hackers, Data, and Code, and look ahead to what’s next for interactive journalism across the world.
The news industry has hailed interactive journalists as its saviors and claimed them as resident authorities of quantification and digital skills the newsroom. But data isn’t as objective as we like to think. Given its significant influence on public opinion, how we present data and statistics is critical, as it can be particularly damaging when done poorly. Thinking about the promises and perils of interactive journalism has never been more important. This talk aspires to be a starting point for this conversation at the SOJC.
Regina Lawrence, Executive Director, Agora Journalism Center and George S. Turnbull Portland Center, UO School of Journalism and Communication
The 2016 Presidential Election
Monday, November 14, 2016, 2-3 p.m., EMU Diamond Lake Room
Whatever the outcome, the 2016 presidential election will have major repercussions for the future of the media and communications. This session will provide the SOJC with a unique opportunity to reflect on the impact of the 2016 race and its implications for our teaching and research.