What's Moving Us?

The Disgraceful Shame Of Oppression

Aljazeera - Hamza al-Khateeb used to love it when the rains came to his small corner of southern Syria, filling up the farmers' irrigation channels enough so that he and the other children could jump in and swim. But the drought of the last few years had left the 13-year-old without the fun of his favourite pool.

Instead, he'd taken to raising homing pigeons, standing on the roof of his family's simple breeze-block home, craning his neck back to see the birds circling above the wide horizon of fields, where wheat and tomatoes were grown from the tough, scrubby soils.

Though not from a wealthy family himself, Hamza was always aware of others less fortunate than himself, said a cousin who spoke to Al Jazeera. "He would often ask his parents for money to give to the poor. I remember once he wanted to give someone 100 Syrian Pounds ($2), and his family said it was too much. But Hamza said, 'I have a bed and food while that guy has nothing.' And so he persuaded his parents to give the poor man the 100."

In the hands of President Bashar al-Assad's security forces, however, Hamza found no such compassion, his humanity degraded to nothing more than a lump of flesh to beat, burn, torture and defile, until the screaming stopped at last. Arrested during a protest in Saida, 10km east of Daraa, on April 29, Hamza's body was returned to his family on Tuesday 24th May, horribly mutilated.

"America... Be True To What You Said On Paper"
The King Center - Martin Luther King speaks about the power and right to protest in America. "Some where I read, of the freedom of assembly... Some where I read, of the freedom of speech... Some where I read of the freedom of the press... Some where I read, that the greatness of America is the right to protest..for rights...."
Documentary Films In The Digital Age
PBS / Media Shift
  •  By Amanda Lin Costa
Lower costs in pro-consumer digital equipment, the crowdfunding phenomenon, and new online and mobile distribution models have opened the door the past few years to many first-time documentary filmmakers in the United States. Independent filmmaking is on the rise, and with that, a trend for more personalized storytelling. Many of today's documentary filmmakers are making bold, stylistic choices more often associated with narrative storytelling than documentary filmmaking and finding savvy, new ways to engage audiences. By pushing the boundaries of what is considered traditional documentary filmmaking, they are stepping up to compete for the eyes of a generation raised on the often outrageous, unfiltered and unedited user-generated videos that can be found on YouTube and the conflict-driven, scripted reality TV that fills networks.
New Occupy Facebook For The 99%
Wired
  •  By Sean Captain
“I don’t want to say we’re making our own Facebook. But, we’re making our own Facebook,” said Ed Knutson, a web and mobile app developer who joined a team of activist-geeks redesigning social networking for the era of global protest. They hope the technology they are developing can go well beyond Occupy Wall Street to help establish more distributed social networks, better online business collaboration and perhaps even add to the long-dreamed-of semantic web — an internet made not of messy text, but one unified by underlying meta-data that computers can easily parse.
Trying To Filter The Social Web
GIGAOM
  •  By Mathew Ingram
Anyone who has tried to track dozens of Twitter streams, hundreds of Facebook updates or thousands of blog posts simultaneously knows that the social web can be an intimidating — and never-ending — ocean of information, one that constantly threatens to swamp us. (There’s a reason Twitter and other social networks call the APIs they use to provide all their data a “firehose.”) A startup called Swift River is one of a number of new services that are trying to find ways of filtering and understanding that ocean in real time, by using “semantic web” technologies.
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Seven On Seven 2012
New York City, NY  /  Apr 14, 2012  -  12:00pm EST

HTC is proud to present the third annual Rhizome Seven on Seven Conference. Seven on Seven will pair seven leading artists with seven influential technologists in teams of two, and challenges them to develop something new be it an application, social media, artwork, product, or whatever they imagine over the course of a single day. The seven teams will work together at locations around New York City on Friday, April 13th and then unveil their ideas at a not to be missed, one-day event at the New Museum on April 14th, 2012 from 12-6pm.

Participating technologists are Jeremy Ashkenas, Blaine Cook, Michael Herf, Marissa Mayer, Aaron Swartz, Khoi Vinh, and Anthony Volodkin. Artists are Aram Bartholl, Xavier Cha, Latoya Ruby Frazier, Naeem Mohaiemen, Jon Rafman, Taryn Simon, and Stephanie Syjuco.

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The 2012 Vimeo Festival + Awards
New York City, NY  /  Jun 7, 2012  -  8:00pm EST

Celebrating the best in online video, the 2012 Vimeo Festival + Awards, June 7th through the 9th,  are jam-packed with new judges, new categories, and new $5,000 grants for category winners and one $25,000 grand prize.

Entrants can submit any original work that premiered anywhere online between July 31, 2010 and February 20, 2012 or any original work that has never been premiered before.  Filmmakers can enter their works for consideration in one of 13 different judged categories.  An independent jury will judge entries, which includes all of the category winners from 2010 as well as two industry luminaries/experts per category.

“Since our inaugural event, we have watched online video explode into a primary medium for new talent discovery,” said Jeremy Boxer, Director of the Vimeo Festival + Awards. “More and more creators earn visibility, credibility and, ultimately, work by showcasing their videos online.  We created the Vimeo Festival + Awards to celebrate the best of the best of these videos.”

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