Scholars have consistently found that adolescents use mobile phones to bond closely with small groups of peers, and there is widespread concern that these insular peer networks limit access to social capital. However, much of this research is based on self-report measures that do not reveal the rich social dynamics underlying social bonding and mobile phone use, nor do they show how specific types of mobile interactions accumulate over time to enable or hinder access to specific types of social capital.
The primary objective of this research is to provide a rich understanding of mobile phone based peer bonding during adolescence and its consequences for social capital using an innovative data collection technique that triangulates smartphone log data, onscreen survey questions, and in-depth interviews. The secondary objective of this research is to develop a web-based interface that will be widely available to researchers and allow them to create customized versions of an existing smartphone application that collects anonymized voice call, texting, and email data.
While there are many studies exploring the relationship between mobile media practices and social networks amongst youth, less is known about mobile media use among immigrant adolescents and its consequences for social capital. Current research has yet to investigate how adolescents with social and geographical constraints use mobile media to bridge the various resources needed in new environments. Compounding this dearth of understanding, information studies focusing on young immigrants have not yet explored how necessary resources are obtained through diverse social connections that provide access to various information, particularly, in the smartphone era. Considering this, my research interest is two- fold. I am interested in how immigrant adolescents obtain instrumental resources through mobile media in order to cope with the challenges they face in their settlement process, and the sociotechnical role of mobile media in bonding and bridging social capital.
The wide adaptation of mobile communication is affecting social inclusion by providing greater accesses to cultural and social resources. Mobile applications are ubiquitous, therefore affecting the way we understand society by aiding negotiations of identity and culture. Little academic work, however, has been done on the relations between personal mobile communication practices and social inclusion of marginalized populations, such as immigrant gay men. This research aims to explore the way immigrant gay men use mobile applications in identity and cultural negotiation, what is colloquially termed ‘coming out’. The primary research question is: What role do smartphone applications, such as Grindr and Jack'D, play in supporting identity construction, community-inclusion, and cultural adaptation of gay male immigrants in Toronto?
Although support for queer populations is well established in Toronto, many immigrant gay males state that communities are inaccessible due to unfamiliar local cultures and social norms (Gosine, 2007). Various social media, such as online communities and chat-rooms, however, allow those who are not included to gain access to the communities and cultural codes that enable them to better negotiate their sexual identity (Gross, 2003). This research aims to explore diverse identity negotiations among immigrant gay men and how they use smartphone applications as a means for enabling their access to local cultures and social networks.
This research findings form a limited yet growing body of knowledge on immigrant gay men’s social inclusion process and their use of information communication technologies in Canadian society. Community support groups can benefit from empirical evidence of early gay immigrants’ inclusion experiences. The findings from this research can aid in designing and providing better access to social and cultural support for marginalized groups. It can also provide immigration policymakers a means for establishing legislative support for marginalized communities. In addition, this study can also contribute to the development of ubiquitous computing platforms, mobile technology, and telecommunication networks that better serve the diverse communities that use them.
- Gosine, A. (2007). Brown to Blonde at Gay.com: Passing White in Queer Cyberspace. In K. &. O'Riordan, Oueer Online: Media Technology & Sexuality (pp. 139-154). New York, NY: Peter Lang.
- Gross, L. (2003). The Gay Global Village in Cyberspace. In J. Curran & N. Couldry. (Eds.), Contesting Media Power: Alternative Media in a Networked World (pp. 259-272). Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers.
Newcomers develop multiple social connections to resources needed for their early settlement process in their offline and online environments. This study of social inclusion process of refugees explores the relationship between use of mobile technologies and access to social capital. The notion of social capital is borrowed from Nan Lin's description from Building Network Theory of Social Capital (1999) where he describes it as "resources embedded in a social structure which are accessed and/or mobilized in purposive actions." At the core of this exploration is the following question: How does social capital is present in the settlement process of refugees in Toronto? This study looks at two tiers of research that includes; (1) a longitudinal analysis of the kinds of information and instrumental resources gathered by newcomers throughout their settlement stages; and (1) triangulate analysis of refugees in terms of how social capital has been developed and impacted their settlement process in mobile media spaces to demonstrate how social network services on mobile media serves in facilitating social inclusion for those with limited access to mainstream society.
OpenMedia undertook a year-long project to engage and inform Canadians about our online privacy issues. Privacy issues are of increasing concern, particularly given confirmation that the government has been mining and collecting on the private information of civil citizens without following proper legal procedures. OpenMedia wanted to gain a better understanding of Canadians’ priorities and expectations when it comes to online privacy.
The first phase of this project focused on building and using an online crowdsourcing tool to ensure as many perspectives and ideas as possible are incorporated into a pro-active, positive report that reflects the views and aspirations of Canadians.
The second phase focused on analyzing results, writing, publishing and engaging citizens in the outcomes of the crowdsourced Privacy Plan.
After releasing a Pro-Privacy Plan,
This infographic outlines the results from this crowdsourcing initiative, Pro-Privacy Plan, packed with ideas of 125,000 Canadians on how to address Canada's privacy deficit.
Find out more at PrivacyPlan.ca
In June of 2003, former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor Edward Snowden disclosed classified information about the United States government’s surveillance programs to several media outlets. Since then the issue has come to light internationally through newspapers and media outlets. Not only do the programs have unconditional authority over constitutional systems but they also violate domestic and foreign civilians’ right to privacy.
On April 8th, 2013, Snowden further dismissed the government officials’ claims that these surveillance programs are only geared towards national security threats, and argued that they are widely abused to control civil society by targeting members of human rights groups. What this story reveals is that the program has been denaturalized from protecting public security to protecting the regime’s political and economical advantage. This issue is not only limited in the US, but has international repurcussions since; 1) global civilians are systematically targeted by this program that violates foreign states’ sovereignty; and 2) the NSA’s programs exacerbate the international surveillance arms race as it encourages other allies and nations to construct similar or contending programs.
While there are a number of studies and news reports on government surveillance today, ordinary citizens, particularly everyday Internet users, have a limited understanding of how the NSA programs operate and why they should care. This project was designed to form a public consensus and to encourage people to join the current petitioning communities in support of reforming the NSA’s program. In light of this, the project employed more accessible communication mechanisms through means of visual and interactive campaigns to aid in informing a wider audience.
* ( Note for mobile: Infographic highlighting this research project is placed after bibliography. )
Consumer’s Data Privacy Transparency
Hofman, M. (Apr. 30, 2013). Who Has Your Back? 2013. San Francisco: Electronic Frontier Foundation. Retrieved from https://www.eff.org/wp/who-has-your-back-2013
Boomerang (See also D.2)
Obar, J. and Clement, A. (2013). Internet Surveillance and Boomerang Routing : A Call for Canadian Network Sovereignty. In P. Ross & J. Shtern (Eds.), TEM 2013: Proceedings of the Technology & Emerging Media Track - Annual Conference of the Canadian Communication Association (Victoria, June 5-7, 2012).
Bamford, J. (Aug. 15, 2013). They Know Much More Than You Think. The New York Review of Books. Retrieved from http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archives/2013/aug/15/nsa-they-know-much-more-you-think/?page=2
The Five Eyes
Open Access Canada. (Nov. 13, 2013) Keeping Watch: The Five Eyes. Canadian International Council. Retrieved from http://opencanada.org/features/the-think-tank/graphic/keeping-watch/
The New Utah Data Centre
Bamford, J. (Mar. 15, 2012). The NSA Is Building the Country’s Biggest Spy Center (Watch What You Say). Wired. Retrieved from http://www.wired.com/2012/03/ff_nsadatacenter/all/
Opsahl, K. (Feb. 6, 2014) Everything We Know About NSA Spying: "Through a PRISM, Darkly". Electronic Frontier Foundation at Chaos Communication Congress. Retrieved from https://www.eff.org/nsa-spying/how-it-works
RT. (Oct. 8, 2013) NSA’s vast new Utah data hub suffering from ‘meltdowns’ - report. RT. Retrieved from http://rt.com/usa/nsa-utah-data-hub-meltdowns-871/
NSA Word Games & Metadata
Opsahl, K. (Jul 11, 2013) The NSA’s Word Games Explained: How the Government Deceived Congress in the Debate over Surveillance Powers. Electronic Frontier Foundation. Retrieved from https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2013/06/director-national-intelligences-word-games-explained-how-government-deceived
Goodman, A. and González, J. (Jun. 12, 2013) More Intrusive Than Eavesdropping? NSA Collection of Metadata Hands Gov’t Sweeping Personal Info. Democracy Now. Retrieved from http://www.democracynow.org/2013/6/12/more_intrusive_than_eavesdropping_nsa_collection
Greenberg, A. (September 3, 2013). How A 'Deviant' Philosopher Built Palantir, A CIA-Funded Data-Mining Juggernaut. Forbes. Retrieved from http://www.forbes.com/sites/andygreenberg/2013/08/14/agent-of-intelligence-how-a-deviant-philosopher-built-palantir-a-cia-funded-data-mining-juggernaut/
Mansnick, M. (Jan. 13, 2014) NSA Goes From Saying Bulk Metadata Collection 'Saves Lives' To 'Prevented 54 Attacks' To 'Well, It's A Nice Insurance Policy'. Tech Dirt. Retrieved from http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20140111/22360125843/nsa-goes-saying-bulk-metadata-collection-saves-lives-to-prevented-54-attacks-to-well-its-nice-insurance-policy.shtml
Gardener, F. (Nov. 2, 2013) How do terrorists communicate?. BBC. Retrieved from http://www.bbc.com/news/world-24784756
Abuse of Power
Barr, B. (Mar. 19, 2014) Senators Forced to Play “Frankenstein” with Privacy Monster They Created. Townhall. Retrieved from http://townhall.com/columnists/bobbarr/2014/03/19/senators-forced-to-play-frankenstein-with-privacy-monster-they-created-n1811028/page/full
Timm, T. (Dec. 31, 2013) President Obama claims the NSA has never abused its authority. That's false. The Guardian. Retrieved from http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/dec/31/nsa-powers-have-been-abused
· G.3 (also see D.2)
Lewis, P. (Sep. 27, 2013) NSA employee spied on nine women without detection, internal file shows. The Guardian. Retrieved from http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/sep/27/nsa-employee-spied-detection-internal-memo
Radicalizer and Social Control
Greenwald, G., Gallangher, R., and Grim, R. (Nov. 26, 2013) Top-Secret Document Reveals NSA Spied On Porn Habits As Part Of Plan To Discredit 'Radicalizers'. Huffington Post. Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/11/26/nsa-porn-muslims_n_4346128.html?1385526024#slide=more322552
Harding, L. (Apr. 8, 2014) Edward Snowden: US government spied on human rights workers. The Guardian. Retrieved from http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/apr/08/edwards-snowden-us-government-spied-human-rights-workers
Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court
EPIC. (May 4, 2012) FISA annual reports: Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act Court Orders 1979-2012. Electronic Privacy Information Center. Retrieved from http://epic.org/privacy/wiretap/stats/fisa_stats.html
National Security Agency. (Sep. 19, 2007) President Bush Discusses the Protect America Act of 2007. The United States Department of Justice. Retrieved from http://www.justice.gov/archive/ll/docs/bush-disc-paa07.pdf
Canada & Communications Security Establishment Canada (CSEC)
Brean, J. (Jan. 27, 2014) FISA annual reports: Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act Court Orders 1979-201 Canada needs independent watchdog to prevent NSA-type breaches: Ontario privacy commissioner. National Post. Retrieved from http://news.nationalpost.com/2014/01/27/canada-needs-independent-watchdog-to-prevent-nsa-type-breaches-ontario-privacy-commissioner/
(See B.1 and .2)
Cavoukian, A. (2013, July). A Primer on Metadata: Separating Fact From Fiction. Toronto: Information and Privacy Commissioner Ontario.
Weston, G. (Oct. 8, 2013) New intelligence headquarters has soaring atriums, grand staircases and filtered drinking fountains. CBC. Retrieved from http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/inside-canada-s-top-secret-billion-dollar-spy-palace-1.1930322