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Digital Ethnography Design Workshop at DERC RMIT

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How do ethnographers engage with the changing form of culture as it becomes increasingly mediated by digital technology? This workshop explores emerging digital methods for collecting, analyzing, visualizing, and narrativizing ethnographic materials. In the first hour, I will introduce the utility of digital tools and computational approaches – including webscraping, mapping, and visualization – for ethnographic inquiries. Drawing empirical examples from my research on Asian American musicians’ digital diaspora, the street music-culture in Taiwan, and my research/design work with the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, I will discuss the affordances (and limitations) of the digital extensions of participant-observation. The second hour of the workshop will be a speculative research design lab in which we collectively explore touch points with the digital in the participants’ own research processes and come up with potential research designs.

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Digital Ethnography Design Workshop at DERC RMIT

  1. 1. Digital Ethnography Design Workshop Wendy F Hsu ACLS Public Fellow
 City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs wendy.hsu@lacity.org @wendyfhsu DERC @ RMIT
  2. 2. Part 1 Touchpoints: pivoting between digital and analog empiricism
  3. 3. How do ethnographers engage with the changing form of culture as it becomes increasingly mediated by digital technology?
  4. 4. + inter/multi-modality s scalability reframing counting calculating augmented empiricism context-shifting zooming in/out
  5. 5. data analysis 
 / visualization data gathering / mining data parsing
 / management data as evidence theorization
 / interrogation evidence
 / argument
  6. 6. What is the relationship between the digital and the analog? an ethnographic take on
  7. 7. Friction Fabien Girardin @ Near Future Lab http://vimeo.com/16759280
  8. 8. Touchpoints
  9. 9. What does the digital do with the analog? Automate, program/script, monitor/surveil, disrupt, transform, rescale, rematerialize, control, recontextualize, regulate, replace, disable/enable, fragment, atomize, remix, connect.
  10. 10. What does the analog do with the digital? resist, recontexualize, disrupt, subvert, contest, re-program, re-perform, re-embody, rematerialize, recycle, regenerate, remix
  11. 11. algorithmically governed → privacy, surveillance, capital, neoliberalism human-machine interface → labor, materiality regulation/activation → agency, materiality, governmentality data performativity/empathy → agency, materiality, labor interactive context-dependent digital-analog touchpoints are:
  12. 12. 1. the digital-analog field
  13. 13. What is the geographical distribution of the musicians’ Myspace friends? How has digital social media reconfigured the geography of a musicians community? theoretical: methodological:
  14. 14. Data gathering: Webscraper API
  15. 15. lat lon username location / link iconSizeiconOffset icon 39.952335 -75.163789 Sunny Ali & the Kid Philadelphia, Pennsylvania http://www.myspace.com/249012225 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 41.850033 -87.6500523 Al-Thawra CHICAGO, Illinois http://www.myspace.com/161456047 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 30.375321 69.345116 Dead Bhuttos Pakistan http://www.myspace.com/182738567 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 31.54505 74.340683 Noble Drew LAHORE, Nehr-o-Nehr http://www.myspace.com/399152518 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 22.277493 114.16824 The Fatsumas starters. http://www.myspace.com/84108530 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 40.7142691 -74.0059729 Michael Muhammad Knight New York http://www.myspace.com/220205473 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 42.299795 -71.426627 Dankill Framingham, Massachusetts http://www.myspace.com/19780 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 42.3875968 -71.0994968 Handsome Chuck somerville, MASSACHUSETTS http://www.myspace.com/2496121,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 6.042681 102.1391122 Pompuan_akit_jiwa PasIr-MaS, KelaNtaN, MY http://www.myspace.com/27249 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 47.162494 19.503304 –Øaphael Hungary http://www.myspace.com/40317 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 38.893375 -77.022942 Majda DC Area, Virginia http://www.myspace.com/41488 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 39.7150631 -86.2977342 Andrea Niceschwander we are a brutal kind... http://www.myspace.com/65716 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 32.802955 -96.769923 Alexis Nicole Pimperton Dallas, Texas, US http://www.myspace.com/77352 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 26.640628 -81.8723084 Mo-zilla Ft. Myers, Florida http://www.myspace.com/102945 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 37.8215929 -121.9999606 Osman Danville, CALIFORNIA http://www.myspace.com/103093 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 39.952335 -75.163789 SassyBritches philadelphia, Pennsylvania http://www.myspace.com/105998 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 40.7159357 -73.9868057 C(see)Squat LOWER EAST SIDE, New York http://www.myspace.com/110390 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 42.3492506 -71.0750332 Amit 02116, Massachusetts http://www.myspace.com/122102 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 40.7364911 -73.8779136 Clay N. Ferno ELMHURST, New York http://www.myspace.com/123247 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 53.4107766 -2.9778383 THRASHGIG LIVERPOOL http://www.myspace.com/129891 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 34.0522342 -118.2436849 Nahal Bahal Los Angeles, California http://www.myspace.com/132615 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png -27.46874-58.80531Musicians Exchange RIZATEK http://www.myspace.com/134537 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 36.778261 -119.4179324 Ali Wali SF BAY AREA/LA/OC, CALIFORNIA http://www.myspace.com/145148 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 41.153332 20.168331 Sehej Albania http://www.myspace.com/146522 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 38.4404674 -122.7144314 Dilluminatti Santa Rosa, California, US http://www.myspace.com/151660 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 36.778261 -119.4179324 LSS San Fran ( in delhi for a few) , California, US http://www.myspace.com/164464 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 38.9059849 -77.0334179 saracen dc http://www.myspace.com/191181 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 34.0211224 -118.3964665 Samir Culver City(L.A.), California http://www.myspace.com/201875 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 34.5008311 -117.1858759 Reshma Apple Valley, California http://www.myspace.com/221129 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 36.114646 -115.172816 CHRIS MASSES Las Vegas, Nevada, US http://www.myspace.com/222319 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 40.0583238 -74.4056612 Fuerza Dulce West Staines Massive, New Jersey http://www.myspace.com/257373 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 39.5500507 -105.7820674 in limbo, COLORADO http://www.myspace.com/265905 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 38.2541667 -85.7602778 bigthinc. Louisville, Kentucky http://www.myspace.com/280065 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 37.7141454 -122.25 Miss.Banga San Francisco-Bay Area http://www.myspace.com/290508 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 41.7858629 -88.1472893 d3z Naperville, Illinois, US http://www.myspace.com/290767 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 40.7142691 -74.0059729 JuliaGhoulia NEW YORK http://www.myspace.com/300958 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 38.8951118 -77.0363658 George W Washington D.C. http://www.myspace.com/306065 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 33.7877944 -117.8531119 Your Singaporean Soldier Orange, CALIFORNIA http://www.myspace.com/328555 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 53.7608608 -98.8138763 Omar X Kinnarath The Peg Gritty., Manitoba http://www.myspace.com/330034 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 42.6334247 -71.3161718 jonathan Lowell, Massachusetts http://www.myspace.com/342176 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 37.826325 -81.142507 Pulin (believes in you) Veganville, Virginia, US http://www.myspace.com/354312 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 25.7742657 -80.1936589 J Miami, Florida http://www.myspace.com/359596 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 42.3094288 -71.0854325 Steve Theo Boston/Cambridge, MASSACHUSETTS http://www.myspace.com/404205 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 33.530904 -117.7738916 The Legend of SWITCHBLAAliso Viejo (1503), California, US http://www.myspace.com/40687121,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 34.0423446 -118.3461948 KillRadio.org Non-Corporate Media From the Heart of Los Angeles http://www.myspace.com/407004 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marke 42.6055893 -83.1499304 Reena Evita Troy, MICHIGAN http://www.myspace.com/413644 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png 41.9028099 -87.7208896 bradley Humboldt Park, Chicago, Illinois http://www.myspace.com/434741 21,25 -10,-25 http://www.openlayers.org/dev/img/marker.png Geocoding...
  16. 16. Mapping Musicians’ Digital Diaspora
  17. 17. The Kominas: 
 South Asian American (Pakistani / Indian) members Kite Operations: 
 Korean American members
  18. 18. 2. Digitizing the analog field
  19. 19. https://storify.com/wendyfhsu/flow-listening-to-the-wandering-underlass-of-taipe?utm_source=embed_header
  20. 20. 3. digital-analog research / design
  21. 21. Questions? Comments?
  22. 22. Part 2 Workshop: design your digital ethnography touch points
  23. 23. ! • What formats are your field data currently in? • Are they digitally born? • Are they analog-born? • Are your data a mixture between analog and digital? ! Let’s scope your project first.
  24. 24. Refer to your 3-page handouts
  25. 25. What did you discover in this exercise that you didn’t think about before? Did this exercise give you a new context to raise new questions? If so, what kinds of inquires can you consider now? What unresolved problems did you encounter in this exercise?

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