The Conference titled Media & Hope took place on 27-28 of April at the University of Jyväskylä and brought more than hundred communications, media and media management scholars.
Very intriguing presentation was on the public official’s salaries being a public information in Finland and the fact that it has to be available by request. However, only 10% of the municipalities has given full information required by the journalists. The rest 90% of the municipalities actually has been turning the process of revealing this type of information difficult, since requested information is about all working hours, usual salaries and bonuses public officials have. Journalists had to write again and again to persuade municipalities referring on their right to the the information. Media researchers are now analysing this 4000 emails between the first party journalists who were seeking information and 300 municipalities. Before the research completes, there has been some conclusions already made that, more sensitive the information is, harder to get it.
Most fun part of the current sessions was about the usage of drones in breaking news in Finland. It was said that, first drones were used publicly in 11.11.2011 at Warsaw protests and since than drones have pioneered braking news until 2015 in some countries. From 2016, it is going toward ubiquitous drone journalism. Petapixel.com gives a geographic map of countries and in what extent the drones are used and if are allowed to use. Considering that there are hundreds of journalists lost their life’s annually at work, due to different working circumstances such as disasters and wars, these drones used in journalism perhaps could save life’s.
Thus far, emphasis on the role of media for social and political mobilizations were discussed too. Namely, Swedish Communication scholar has analysed different social movements media use from the beginning of 19’ century. In particular, she introduced others with the dominant media resistance through social media or so called attacking time regimes of dominant media technologies through slow media practices. For instance, the case of google search algorithms bringing only white hand when one is looking for a hand in search options. Proactive campaign resisting this type of practice named it “web world white” and it went viral around the world questioning this type of all white algorithms. These, presenter named as “hope resistances”. In other words, mediating hope in the age of post truth fake news. In conclusion, considering also the time of clashing narratives and disinformation, it was certain that, more one builds narratives of its own, it goes forward with this easier.
Having responsibilities at the conference restricted me to attend each session and every presentation. This notes are on those presentations that I took part. To see more about the conference and speakers, please visit the conference homepage: https://www.jyu.fi/hytk/fi/laitokset/kivi/tutkimus/konferenssit/mevi2018