On February 24th, MIT Comparative Media Studies will host a conference in collaboration with Harvard's Berkman Center for Internet and Society and the Information Society Project at Yale Law School. The one-day event will be held at MIT, and is entitled "Beyond Broadcast: From Participatory Culture to Participatory Democracy." It will bring together industry experts, academic leaders, and political activists for panel discussions and focused working groups.
Attendees will explore the means, the message, and the meaning of the post-midterm, pre-presidential YouTube moment. Broadcast media have long played a powerful role in shaping political culture and mediating citizen engagement in the democratic process, and the conference will examine how participatory culture is putting the tools of media creation and critique in the hands of citizens themselves.
The plenary sessions will take place in Kirsch Auditorium in the Stata Center, followed by breakout groups. There will also be an evening reception in the Wiesner Building, called "Demos and Drinks," showcasing groups that are doing exciting work related to conference themes.
In other news, I have a new column up at Reason Online. It's about the drive to mandate Merck's HPV vaccine.