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Blackbird presentation

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Blackbird presentation

  1. 1. The Curious Case of a Black Browser <ul><li>Cultural Values as a Predictor of Technology Use </li></ul>André Brock The University of Iowa
  2. 2. Browser = Internet
  3. 3. Browser for Black People = ???
  4. 4. Blackbird (Mac)
  5. 5. TECHNOLOGY Artifact Practice Text Belief PUBLIC PERCEPTION
  6. 6. <ul><li>Browser </li></ul>Individual Universal Whiteness Western Culture
  7. 7. cultural product Software Artifact Browser
  8. 8. <ul><li>Critical Race and Technoculture Theory </li></ul><ul><li>Interface Analysis </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Examination of implicit and explicit cultural features/mechanics </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Discourse Analysis </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Associations between cultural identity and technological identity </li></ul></ul>Analysis
  9. 9. Blackbird (Mac)
  10. 10. Blackbird - features <ul><ul><li>custom Google Search </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>News Ticker </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Give Back </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>custom video channel </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Local job/business search </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Google Search: “Black Girls”
  12. 12. BLACKBIRD Search: “Black Girls”
  13. 13. Racial Technoculture
  14. 14. <ul><li>Techcrunch </li></ul><ul><li>Ars Technica </li></ul><ul><li>BlackWeb 2.0 </li></ul><ul><li>Roney Smith </li></ul><ul><li>The Angry Black Woman </li></ul><ul><li>Around-Harlem.com </li></ul>Discourse
  15. 15. <ul><li>“ No one is going to convince me that Google is White by default unless you want to argue that being simple, quick and useful is “white”. LOL. The thing is that from an ideal perspective when a user logs onto the Internet they are starting from a “unified” and “unfiltered” position and choose to navigate toward targeted content. The difference here is that someone has developed a “tool” that controls and filters the “experience” right from the start. They’ve found a way to create a segregated experience. </li></ul>Mainstream Blogs
  16. 16. <ul><li>“ If Obama starts doing all kinds of nutty stuff, will a standard search return news articles and criticism and the Blackbird search censor such things?” </li></ul><ul><li>“ so it comes pre-loaded with links to Public Defenders, and tips on how to beat weapons charges…Great”. </li></ul><ul><li>“ If the browser, as the article states, skews results away from potentially more informative and authoritative sources of information in favor of those that are more culture centric, then it really is doing it's [sic] users a disservice.” </li></ul>Mainstream Blogs
  17. 17. <ul><li>Blackbird isn't about &quot;walled gardens&quot; or &quot;separatism&quot; - it doesn't take you to some blacks-only internet, it doesn't wipe your harddrive if a white person tries to use it, it's a product designed to appeal to the needs and wants of blacks. You can disagree with the viability of this model (which I do) but there's nothing wrong with the motivation </li></ul>Mainstream Blogs
  18. 18. <ul><li>It is true that if one is very interested in African-American perspectives on news and social issues, one has to be savvy in the use of search engines, which do not cough up those results without good Google-fu…As a white person with an anti-racist ideology who is interested in reading from Black perspective, I would have downloaded and used the browser just out of curiosity. </li></ul>Black Interest Blogs
  19. 19. <ul><li>“ I don’t need anyone helping me find Black content...How is my web experience enhanced by letting Blackbird filter information through their browser?“ </li></ul>Black Interest Blogs Text
  20. 20. Conclusions <ul><li>The Digital divide is insufficient to understand the information needs of minority users </li></ul><ul><li>ICTs frame and configure discourse </li></ul><ul><li>lessons for cultural design of ICTs </li></ul><ul><li>lessons for online communities </li></ul>
  21. 21. André Brock School of Library and Information Science Project on the Rhetoric of Inquiry The University of Iowa [email_address] http://uiowa.academia .edu/AndreBrock

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