First AoIR Flashpoint Symposium

On June 24, 2019 the University of Urbino hosted the first AoIR Flashpoint Symposium. I am really happy to have contributed to the success of the event with the other members of the organizing committee.

The Flashpoint Symposium is a new format of academic meeting that, as the president of the Association of Internet Researchers Axel Bruns said, aims at responding  “more rapidly to the key issues of the day than conventional conferences, journals, and books are able to do”.

Title of the Flashpoint Symposium was “Below the Radar: Private Groups, Locked Platforms and Ephemeral Contents”. The focus of the event was on the problems researchers face in accessing social media data and on the issues of studying social media contents in an environment marked by an increasing number of ephemeral user generated contents.

The AoIR Flashpoint Symposium was kicked off with the keynote speech of the digital anthropologist Crystal Abidin, and closed by Rebekah Tromble.

Crystal Abidin presented a lot of engaging research materials and an interesting perspective on how the danah boyd’s concept of networked publics could be revisited in the light of the recent transformations of the Internet.

The closing keynote speech was delivered by Rebekah Tromble that addressed the issue of research ethics in a scenario where social media data are increasingly difficult for researchers to access, soliciting scholars to thinking critically on the social importance of research questions and on the ethics of data treatment and conservation.

The AoIR Flashpoint Symposium was transmitted via live streaming and the video registration is available on the YouTube channel of the University of Urbino.

Axel Bruns wrote a live blog during the conference that can be read on his website. The website with the program of the conference can be accessed at the following link.