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Sandra Braman: “Frames, Fractures, and Skins: Internet Design as Social Policy”
Tuesday, October 25, 2011 @ 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm
Communications Forum and the Program in Science, Technology, and Society present a lunch-time talk with MIT Press author and Information Policy book series editor Sandra Braman (University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee)
Those responsible for technical design of the Internet have found they must think through a number of social policy issues along the way, from those we might expect (privacy, property rights, and security) to those that may be more surprising (environmental problems, ensuring access in rural areas, and the socio-cultural impact of network use). In doing so they make and analyze policy, develop formal decision-making processes and governance entities, and discuss political, social, and communication theory. Positions on policy issues were framed by conceptualizations of the nature of the network, goals to be served by the network, users and uses of the network, early identification of specific legal and policy problems that needed to be addressed, and the design criteria that served as policy principles as they were developed during the early years of the design process. Based on a discourse analysis of the technical document series that records the history of Internet design decision-making as it was launched by issuance of the first DARPA contract in 1969, this presentation examines such policy fundamentals as they developed during the first decade of the network process and traces the consequences of reliance upon those frames as the network continued to develop and change over time.
Bring lunch if you’d like. Coffee and drinks served.