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Twitter Considered: On Its Advantages and Disadvantages for Academe, ASEEES, and Life

Sat, November 7, 4:00 to 5:30pm, Virtual Convention Platform, Room 15

Session Submission Type: Roundtable

Brief Description

In an age of hyperventilation and snark, anxiety and rebellion, Twitter has acquired a bad rap in the Russian, East European, and Eurasian field. In fact, surprisingly as of 2020, less than a quarter of ASEEES members are “on it.” So, let’s play trick the algorithm: many academics see it as distracting, hesitate to use it, or are modest and flatly refuse to join it. Bullies and bots, trolls and neofascist dragons are out there, as are property robbers. Privacy may indeed be a thing of the past. But if Twitter is self-promotional, so what? As a means of building solidarity in the humanities, and from journalism into lobbying and policy circles and back again, its potential is high. Performance art works: how best to do it? Twitter’s bazaar extends to the sharing of syllabi, maps, articles, photos, open source books, poetry, clickbait, podcasts, and diverse forms of public scholarship, all the while in support and defense of professionals across a wide range of data production and research practices. Individuals have channels; they are channels. Our panel looks to historicize and promote media engagement, out of conventional spaces of academe and beyond the “nationalities” of ASEEES. We’ll debate Twitter’s opportunities and vulnerabilities, the new and unseen forms of spreading knowledge in the digital commons.

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