Building Better Online Communities: An October 30 Virtual Panel

Mozilla

By Mozilla | Oct. 28, 2020

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Designers, organizers, and artists discuss how to create safer, more inclusive digital spaces when we need them most — amid a pandemic.


Right now, online communities are more important than ever.

Amid a pandemic, millions more people are relying on digital interfaces in their everyday lives. Everything from school and weddings to protests and art exhibitions are unfolding online, using tools like Zoom and Google Docs.

The tools we’re using to connect while physically apart can be helpful. But they’re not perfect. Many of them were designed for enterprise use by businesses, not communities. And their flaws — from poor security to lackluster moderation features — become even more pronounced as their user bases grow more diverse.

On Friday, October 30 at 11 a.m. ET, Mozilla will host a virtual panel exploring how we can improve these tools to make them safe, more inclusive, and more community-oriented.

Watch on Twitter or YouTube.

Our 40-minute panel will feature:

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Panelist SHAWNÉ MICHAELAIN HOLLOWAY | @cleogirl2525

SHAWNÉ MICHAELAIN HOLLOWAY is a new media artist and poet. Known for using sound, video, and performance, HOLLOWAY shapes the rhetorics of technology and sexuality into tools for exposing structures of power. She has spoken and exhibited work internationally in spaces like The New Museum, The Kitchen, Institute of Contemporary Arts (London), and Ars Electronica. She is this year's Leslie-Lohman Museum of Art’s Theatre and Performance Resident, one of this year's Clinic for Open Source Art’s COSA Connectors, as well Frieze Magazine’s cover art feature for September. Currently, she teaches creative coding and new media art history at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and the University of Illinois at Chicago.

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Panelist Fei Liu | @binaricorn

Fei Liu 刘斐 is a New York-based Chinese designer, artist, and educator. Her art and research explores embodiment and telepresence, robotics, performance, civic engagement, and systems of care. She is a product designer at independent news organization, The Intercept, and an adjunct professor at Parsons MFA Design and Technology. Previous residencies include Pioneer Works, New Museum, NEW INC, and Akademie Schloss Solitude.

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Panelist Sarah Mathews | @smathewss

Sarah Thankam Mathews is a writer and organizer. She was a recent fellow at the Iowa Writers' Workshop, and has work forthcoming in Best American Short Stories 2020, edited by Curtis Sittenfeld. She has previously worked for years in the world of progressive politics, and is the founder of the 4000-member mutual aid network Bed-Stuy Strong.

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Moderator Caroline Sinders | @carolinesinders

Caroline Sinders is a critical designer and artist. For the past few years, she has been examining the intersections of artificial intelligence, abuse, and politics in digital conversational spaces. She has worked with the United Nations, Amnesty International, IBM Watson, the Wikimedia Foundation and others. Sinders has held fellowships with the Harvard Kennedy School, Google's PAIR (People and Artificial Intelligence Research group), Mozilla, Pioneer Works, Eyebeam, Ars Electronica, the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, the Sci Art Resonances program with the European Commission, and the International Center of Photography. Currently, she is a fellow with Ars Electronica AI Lab with the Edinburgh Futures Institute and a visiting fellow with the Weizenbaum Institute looking at labor and systems in AI and platforms. Her work has been featured in the Tate Exchange in Tate Modern, Victoria and Albert Museum, MoMA PS1, LABoral, Wired, Slate, Quartz, the Channels Festival and others. Sinders holds a Masters from New York University's Interactive Telecommunications Program.