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September 2, 2014

Breaking News:

BREAKING: New Coal Disaster In West Virginia -

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

U.S. Hostage Freed by Colombia’s FARC Rebels (Video) -

Monday, October 28, 2013

Here’s Why The Zimmerman Verdict Matters -

Sunday, July 14, 2013

BREAKING! UK Government Spied On Allies At TWO G20 Summits (Video) -

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Swiss Support Tougher Asylum Legislation as Refugee Numbers Spike -

Monday, June 10, 2013

American Woman Killed in Syria Fighting for Terrorists, Syrian TV Claims (Video) -

Friday, May 31, 2013

CO2 in the Air Reached its Highest Level in Human History -

Friday, May 10, 2013

Terms of the New Abortion Bill Agreed by Irish Cabinet -

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Boston In Lockdown As Manhunt Intensifies -

Friday, April 19, 2013

2 Dead, Dozens Injured After Boston Marathon Bombing -

Monday, April 15, 2013

Fast Food Workers in New York Stage Surprise Strike -

Saturday, April 6, 2013

N. Korean Rhetoric Provokes Missile Shield Deployment -

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Eyewitness Accounts from Meiktila Massacre -

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Sudan to Free All Political Prisoners -

Monday, April 1, 2013

A New Free Press In Burma Juxtaposed With Genocide: The World Will Be Watching -

Friday, March 29, 2013

Pressure Builds to End Ethnic Violence in Myanmar -

Friday, March 29, 2013

Activists Demand Action As Further Genocide Looms -

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Cyprus Reaches Last-Minute Bailout Deal With EU -

Monday, March 25, 2013

Myanmar Muslims Brace for Possible Genocide -

Sunday, March 24, 2013

IMF Chief Lagarde’s Home Searched over Tapie Scandal -

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

How We Shape Technology…Or Does Technology Shape Us?

Google Earth image of North Korean camps

Human Rights activists are able to use Google Earth’s free satellite imagery to identify new North Korean prison camps. Further using technology for good, DigitalGlobe Inc is the source of some of Google Earth’s satellite images. DigitalGlobe also provides imagery and analysis pro bono to humanitarian organizations as well as The Committee for Human Rights in North Korea.

Google Earth Engine technology monitors Amazon deforestation and other tropical countries, helping the Surui tribe map and preserve their culture and forest, and provides other environmental and human rights outreach.

Around the world social media has an impact in uprisings and revolutions. Especially in restricted countries with repressive regimes social media levels the playing field and provides the connections necessary for the seemingly powerless to believe in the success of their campaign.  Yet, these technologies are used by both sides.  Most recently, the Syrian government is believed to have been behind the internet blackout in an attempt to disrupt the rebels’ communications and broadcasts of the fighting.

"Shirley", which was the nickname given to the girl used in Kodak plotting sheets Our conflicted relationship with technology has a long history. The current art exhibition by artists Adam Broomberg and Oliver Chanarin explores the racism of the first Kodak color film and early Polaroid technology. The artists explain that the color film was designed to be calibrated for ‘white’ skin tones.

Bloomberg explains with such a narrow light range ”if you exposed film for a white kid, the black kid sitting next to him would be rendered invisible except for the whites of his eyes and teeth”. How was this technology advanced? Not in response to the clamor of black families who wanted to take photos, but by Kodak’s two biggest clients who needed a color film to capture the true colors of chocolate and dark furniture. The title of the exhibition itself, “To Photograph a Dark Horse in Low Light“, is the code phrase Kodak used when developing the color film in the 1980′s that would capture dark skin tones.

Similarly, their examination of the Polaroid ‘boost button’ technology in use in South Africa reveals the participation in apartheid and the Polaroid boycott and withdrawal from South Africa that contributed to the end of apartheid.

As we increasingly immerse ourselves in our technological environment we can easily become complacent and forget to examine our use and our potential and the possibility that there is nothing good nor bad in technology, but thinking…and doing…makes it so.

Perhaps in the 21st century Hamlet might observe that technology is neither good nor bad, but humans make it so.

photo credit: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/northkorea/9826125/Google-Earth-exposes-North-Koreas-secret-prison-camps.html

‘shirley card’ photo credit: Adam Broomberg And Oliver Chanarin/Goodman Gallery via http://www.guardian.co.uk/artanddesign/2013/jan/25/racism-colour-photography-exhibition

k.m.f. (9 Posts)

Juvenile justice advocate and educator currently managing a program in youth corrections for enrichment in the arts, life skills training, and transitions services for young men 16-24 years old for successful reintegration into community. Advocating for justice issues, including incorporating Restorative Justice Principles into our current system of crime and punishment, ending the school to prison pipeline, and addressing mandatory minimum sentences. Working to break down stereotype and stigma of juveniles with adult felonies returning to society. M.S.Ed Leadership in Ecology, Culture, and Learning with 20 years of experience in formal and informal education, services and advocacy for at-risk youth, victims of domestic violence and refugee resettlement. Writing from the multiple perspectives of environmental health educator, restorative justice practice, and former law enforcement officer. Trying to live as wide as she does long...