Archive for the ‘conferences’ Category

Facebook’s recommended privacy settings should emphasize more not less

Thursday, October 14th, 2010

Facebook’s “Privacy Settings” always seem to be a work in progress. One thing they do consistently is default to less privacy overall, thus more sharing of your information on their site. For a website that depends on user-generated content the motivation to encourage sharing is clear enough. Still, why do they use the word “privacy” if they’re not actually embracing the idea?

For example, a recent update introduces a table with degrees of privacy from less to more (left to right). Types of data are listed in rows, while access is shown in the columns, with Everyone to Friends Only, again left to right.


Curious about what Facebook “Recommended” settings were, I clicked and am sharing the screenshot below. I am not surprised to see that they wish me to open-up all content I generate; status messages, posts, images, etc. and discourage allowing anyone I don’t know to comment on posts (probably as spam prevention).


I have been thinking about privacy quite a bit this week, developing ideas for what next to do with Give Me My Data, and providing an interview about social media for Naked on Pluto (along with the likes of Marc Garrett and Geert Lovink). Plus I went to see the “geek hero story” The Social Network at the Babylon Cinema last night.

Anyway, after all this thinking about Facebook’s past, I’m curious about its future, and how it will continue to try to hold on to the #1 social networking website position that Friendster and MySpace lost so quickly. The API, games, etc could be expected, but the Facebook Connect tools that are so prevalent now, even on Yelp, a site I figured could make it without schlepping, were a surprise.

Facebook Connect, a jquery “widget” that allows you to login to other websites using your Facebook ID, is clever and eerie at once. It allows Facebook to track you when you are not even on their site, and make sure you stay loyal. If that sounds sinister, well it is. What other purpose could there be for making available a service with the single purpose of mediating every interaction or bit of content you add to the web? It seems at first like OpenID, and it is, except that its run by a multi-billion dollar social media corporation.

Automata: Counter-Surveillance in Public Space paper on the Public Interventions panel at ISEA2010

Saturday, August 7th, 2010


ISEA2010 RUHR Conference in Dortmund, Germany

P26 Public Interventions
Tue 24 August 2010
Volkshochschule Dortmund, S 137a
Moderated by Georg Dietzler (de)

  • 15:00h | Owen Mundy (us): Automata: Counter-Surveillance in Public Space
  • 15:20h | Christoph Brunner (ch/ca), Jonas Fritsch (dk): Balloons, Sweat and Technologies. Urban Interventions through Ephemeral Architectures
  • 15:40h | Georg Klein (de): Don’t Call It Art! On Artistic Strategies and Political Implications of Media Art in Public Space
  • 16:00h | Georg Dietzler (de): Radical Ecological Art and No Greenwash Exhibitions

About my talk:

Automata is the working title for a counter-surveillance internet bot that will record and display the mutually-beneficial interrelationships between institutions for higher learning, the global defense industry, and world militaries. Give Me My Data is a Facbook application that help users reclaim and reuse their Facebook data. The two projects, both ongoing, address important issues surounding contemporary forms of communication, surveillance, and control.

Recent and ongoing projects

Friday, July 16th, 2010

Howdy, it’s been awhile since I last shared news about recent and ongoing projects. Here goes.


1. You Never Close Your Eyes Anymore

You Never Close Your Eyes Anymore is an installation that projects moving US Geological Survey (USGS) satellite images using handmade kinetic projection devices.

Each device hangs from the ceiling and uses electronic components to rotate strips of satellite images on transparency in front of an LED light source. They are constructed with found materials like camera lenses and consumer by-products and mimic remote sensing devices, bomb sights, and cameras in Unmanned Aerial Vehicles.

The installation includes altered images from various forms of lens-based analysis on a micro and macro scale; land masses, ice sheets, and images of retinas, printed on reflective silver film.

On display now until July 31 at AC Institute 547 W. 27th St, 5th Floor
Hours: Wed., Fri. & Sat.: 1-6pm, Thurs.: 1-8pm

New video by Asa Gauen and images

2. Images and video documentation of You Never Close Your Eyes Anymore will also be included in an upcoming Routledge publication and website:

Reframing Photography: Theory and Practice
by Rebekah Modrak, Bill Anthes
ISBN: 978-0-415-77920-3
Publish Date: November 16th 2010


3. Give Me My Data launch

Give Me My Data is a Facebook application designed to give users the ability to export their data out of Facebook for any purpose they see fit. This could include making artwork, archiving and deleting your account, or circumventing the interface Facebook provides. Data can be exported in CSV, XML, and other common formats. Give Me My Data is currently in public-beta.


Facebook application


4. Give Me My Data was also covered recently by the New York Times, BBC, TechCrunch, and others:

Facebook App Brings Back Data by Riva Richmond, New York Times, May 1, 2010

Picture 6

5. launch

A major server and website upgrade to the web-hosting co-op for artists and creatives. The new site allows members of the community to create profiles and post images, tags, biography, and events. In addition to the community aspect, is still the best deal going for hosting your artist website.


More images


6. The Americans

The Americans is currently on view at the Northwest Florida State College in Niceville, FL. It features a new work with the same title.

More images


7. Your Art Here billboard hanger

I recently designed a new billboard hanging device and installed it in downtown Bloomington, IN with the help of my brother Reed, and wife Joelle Dietrick.

Stay tuned here for news about Your Art Here and the new billboard by Joelle Dietrick.


8. Finally, moving to Berlin for a year on a DAAD fellowship to work on some ongoing projects, including Automata.

More images

I’ll be giving a paper about Automata at the upcoming ISEA2010 conference in Ruhr, Germany.

Many thanks to Chris Csikszentmihályi, Director of the Center for Future Civic Media , for inviting me to the MIT Media Lab last August to discuss the project with his Computing Culture Group:

ISEA2009 Belfast, Ireland

Wednesday, July 22nd, 2009


Saturday, August 29, 2009, I will be talking about Keyword Intervention in a paper titled, “Intervention and the Internet: New Forms of Public Practice” at ISEA2009: the 15th International Symposium on Electronic Art in Belfast, Ireland.

Full program

ART&DESIGN for Social Justice Symposium

Saturday, January 17th, 2009

The Darkest Hour

On Monday, January 19, Joelle and I are giving a presentation titled, “The Darkest Hour is Just Before Dawn: Research and Optimism in Community-Based Art,” to Florida State University’s ART&DESIGN for Social Justice Symposium.

The ART&DESIGN for Social Justice Symposium focuses on how the tools and inherent abilities within the areas of art and design can be utilized in addressing issues confronting less advantaged groups within our local communities, states, regions or world. The event is designed to generate synergy, spawn collaborative projects among participants, create new scholarly initiatives, and allow examination of the role that art and design plays in the telling of a broader social narrative.

2009 Art and Design for Social Justice Symposium
Florida State University
Location: HCB, “The New Classroom Building”

8:00-8:30 Late Registration, Coffee and Pastries

8:30-8:45 Welcome, Eric Wiedegreen, Dean Sally McRorie, Dave Gussak,
Room 103

8:45-9:30 Eve Blossom, Keynote Speaker, Room 103

9:45-10:15 Presentation, Room 205
“Close to Home: Studying Art and Your Community”
Pat Villeneuve & Donald Sheppard, Florida State University

Presentation, Room 210
“Separating Desire from Desperation: Parallel Existences in Sao Paulo,
Hannah Mendoza & Matthew Dudzik, Savannah College of Art and Design

Film, Room 213
“Pillars of Justice: An examination of courthouses and their role the
search for justice.”
Brenda Waugh & Paulette Moore, Center for Justice and Peace at Eastern
Mennonite University

10:25-10:55 Presentation, Room 205
“Art Therapy as Part of a Multidisciplinary Team: Developing an Arts in
Corrections Program”
Caroline Cook, Florida State University

Presentation, Room 210
“From Sheltered Students to Sheltering Others”
Patrick Lee Lucas & Suzanne Cabrera, The University of North Carolina-

11:05-11:35 Presentation, Room 205
“Art and Place Relationship: Evaluating Sense of Place in a Community
Based Public Art Installation”
Marlo Ransdell, Florida State University

Presentation, Room 210
“i+TiBET: A Community Effort to Preserve Tibetan Culture-in-Exile”
Angela Tank & Carrie Ann Christensen, University of Minnesota-Twin

11:45-12:15 Presentation, Room 205
“The Darkest Hour is Just Before Dawn: Research and Optimism in
Community-Based Art”
Owen Mundy & Joelle Dietrick, Florida State University

Presentation, Room 210
“Incorporating Civic and Social Responsibility into Design Curriculum”
Jillissa Moorman, University of Northern Iowa

12:15- 1:30 Lunch (with Music by Charles Atkins)

1:40- 2:10 Presentation, Room 205
“Integrating Social Justice in the Thesis”
Alison Keohane, Jessica Menrath, Cheryl Watson, Hannah Mendoza,
Savannah College of Art and Design

Presentation, Room 210
“Research to Application: How an Innovative Arts in Corrections Program
Was Developed”
Dave Gussak, Florida State University

2:20-2:50 Presentation, Room 205
“The Cradle of Hope: One Year Later”
Jill Pable, Rachelle McClure, Sean Coyne, Florida State University

Presentation, Room 210
“A Place of Their Own: Shaping Behavior Through Design in an Arts-
Based Community Center”
Tracie Kelly, Florida State University

3:00- 3:45 Endnote Speaker, Joan Frosch

3:45- 4:00 Closing Remarks

Allied Media Conference 2006

Thursday, June 1st, 2006

I’m presenting a session at the Allied Media Conference,June 9-11, 2006,called, Introduction to Web Publishing, in Bowling Green, OH.