Demystifying: Israeli Media and Threats to Israeli Press Freedoms

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.

Demystifying: Sexist Apps, Biased Algorithms, and Toxic Tech

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.

Demystifying: Why People “Fly from Facts”

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.