Internet is for the people - the future we want[edit | edit source]
Tired of apocalyptic scenarios and Black Mirror episodes? Then join us to work backward from imagining better futures, in which the internet is for the people. Let’s kick things off with stating the future we want and then we will plan ways of getting there. In order to have time for in-depth discussions we will brainstorm, speculate and sketch ideas in small groups. There will be several opportunities to share back and discuss with the whole group. During the workshop we will actively use Wikimedia as a source of inspiration and data. The future we want will focus on the access to knowledge which is a tool to empower people.
The workshop is our answer to the shortcomings of advocacy, but also to our dissatisfaction with the seemingly unavoidable dystopian context of the debate on technological progress. Tech is neither good nor bad in itself; it is as beneficial as its final application. It can therefore contribute to making the world a better place, more open, where access to knowledge is a standard. We all would like to
believe that through technological progress we can touch the future, we can understand it better, and finally we can shape it with the decisions we take today. Therefor we decided to use speculative design to shape our narrative.
The workshop will be conducted by the team behind the project "Future not made in the EU" and “Internet is for the people”. The first campaign presents future objects and services that may enhance cultural and educational experience, but their future is uncertain – their utility does depend on whether the copyright reform addresses future challenges properly. The second one shows the internet as a common good, the shape of which depends also on legislative choices. This framing was the basis for advocacy for on internet regulations (copyright in particular).
Both campaigns were based on our experiences with policymaking and advocacy. Over the last several years, we learned that the law is usually drafted based on past experiences or a narrow time-frame, rather than on recognising future challenges. The longer we are in this debate, the better we can see that looking backwards to regulate participation in increasingly digital culture may result in fatal consequences.
The workshop will be an opportunity for creators, activists and other members of the community to combine their expertise in order to address future challenges in creative ways and get to know more about speculative design.
This session will address the conference theme — Wikimedia, Free Knowledge and the Sustainable Development Goals — in the following manner: the workshop will create an opportunity for participants to reflect and design the future they want, taking into account Sustainable Development Goals. The questions we will address is how the internet and technology can help us solve global problems, change reality and cultivate commons and openness. Depending on the interests of participants various groups will focus on different SDGs.
At the end of the session, the following will have been achieved: a set of new narratives - developed by a diverse group of participants. The groups will learn about speculative processes for actioning more preferable futures. We want to introduce them to the method of backcasting and discuss how this can be applied to their work. Cultural narratives are dominated by dystopian scenarios. Especially in the field of technology. We think it’s time for new utopias. We want to encourage people to develop bold and positive visions about the future. We believe that imagining a better world and being able to talk about it is the first step towards a positive future.
- Natalia Mileszyk
- Alek Tarkowski
- Wikimedia username 1
- Wikimedia username 2
Affiliation/country (if any)[edit | edit source]
- Communia Association/Poland
- Centrum Cyfrowe/Poland
Each Space at Wikimania 2019 will have specific format requests. The program design prioritises submissions which are future-oriented and directly engage the audience. The format of this submission is a:
- Workshop to identify and try to solve problem
- Otherworkshop using speculative design
The session will work best with these conditions:
- Room: Round table setting, so we will be able to have group discussion. Moreover, it would be great if the session can last 90’
- Audience: Up to 40 people, no need of any prior knowledge/skills.
- Recording: Might be challenging - multiple conversations are happening simultaneously.