Brian Greenspan (Carleton University)

Private Interests, Virtual Collectivity, and Digital Humanities

Brian Greenspan

As digital media permeate more areas of everyday life, their ability to capture and control information grows. Social media and mobile devices collect, mine, and re-sell users’ personal information to private interests. At the same time, some theorists argue that these digital platforms enable social activism and resistance by blending embodied communities with new forms of virtual collectivity. This presentation will explore crowdsourcing, peer-to-peer review, and other models of online scholarly collaboration advanced by the digital humanities, and assess their potential to stand as models for radical political organization. I will demonstrate several digital applications and installations designed at the Carleton Hyperlab to engage broad user communities, and allow them to reclaim knowledge and culture from private interests.