Mary Erickson (Ph.D., 2011) presented, “Filmmaking in Iraq: A Rebirth?” at the MLA conference in Seattle in early January. Her paper entitled, “The Production of Media Activism: Digital Media and Teen Girls,” about the Seattle-based media production organization Reel Grrls, will appear on In Media Res (http://mediacommons.futureofthebook.org/imr/) during the week of January 23-27. Mary also will be editing the English language content for the website of the Baghdad in preparation for its 2012 festival.

Tiffany Gallicano, Kevin Brett, and Toby Hopp’s study was accepted to the International Public Relations Research Conference. Their work is titled “Is Ghost Blogging Like Speechwriting? A Survey of Practitioners about the Ethics of Ghost Blogging.”

Harsha Gangadharbatla will be chairing a panel titled, “The Future of Advertising is as Solid as a BRIC,” at the 2012 American Academy of Advertising Conference. He will also be presenting two papers at the upcoming What is TV? conference in Portland titled, ” Just How Valuable is Television Advertising compared to Advertising on Social Media in the Minds of Consumers?” and “Television, Globalization, and the Crisis of U.S. Cultural Imperialism.” (See more information about the conference below.)

Toby Hopp and Arthur Santana’s paper entitled, “Driving the Dialogue: A Media-Use Profile of Online Newspaper Commenters,” has been accepted for presentation at the International Communication Association conference in Phoenix, May 24-28.

Lauren Kessler will read from and talk about My Teenage Werewolf as part of Eugene Public Library’s Windfall Series 5:30 pm Jan. 17. On Feb. 10 she’ll be at Cozmic Pizza telling the ghastly story of her first date for “It’s Not Me, It’s You: Stories from the Dark Side of Dating,” a fundraiser for Planned Parenthood. On Feb. 15, she’ll be in Portland leading a discussion of Sebastian Junger’s work as part of the Literary Arts program.

Peter Laufer’s book Neon Nevada was published by Globe Pequot Press, photographed and written with Sheila Swan. It is a study of the influence of the neon sign on Nevada culture. An article by Laufer and his colleagues from Rutgers University, Salisbury State and an education consultancy company in Lebanon about their UNESCO Iraq curriculum development project was accepted for publication in Journalism and Mass Communication Educator. “Demise of KGO Talk Radio Silences Community Debate,” an op-ed on the change of format at the long-time San Francisco radio station, was published in the San Francisco Chronicle.

Randall Livingstone has started a new website, Comm / Tech / Theory / Society: http://commtechtheorysociety.com/. The site is devoted to collecting and organizing news, features, commentaries, tools, sites, and media of all kinds that explore the social, cultural, and theoretical intersections of communication and technology. In addition to recent items, Randall will post important historical research, theory, and commentary that is relevant to the ongoing understanding of communication and technology. Randall also will be presenting “Population Automation: RamBot Work and Legacy on Wikipedia” at the 2012 Graduate Student Research Forum on February 10th.

Ed Madison has advanced to candidacy in his doctoral program and is now focused on his dissertation, which is entitled “Journalistic Learning.” His quantitative study will survey and compare high school students engaged in three distinct categories of language arts curricula: journalism, Advanced Placement English, and traditional English. It looks at student motivation and learning strategies, and several high schools across the nation are participating. This new research builds on his qualitative field study of journalism at Palo Alto High School, and explores how a broader and more diverse population of students can potentially benefit from journalism pedagogy.

Scott Maier will give the keynote address at the international conference “Media Accountability – Potentials and Pitfalls in the Era of Web 2.0.” The conference of journalism researchers and practitioners will be held in late January at the University of Switzerland – Lugano.

Andy Opel’s (MS, 1998) first children’s book, The Witches: A Winnipesaukee Adventure (illustrated by Karel Hayes), recently won first place in the Children’s Book category of the New England Book Festival.

Jon Palfreman’s FRONTLINE report about the Fukushima nuclear accident, “Nuclear Aftershocks.” will air nationally on PBS on January 17, on OPB 10 pm (PST) or on line at (http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/nuclear-aftershocks/).

Bryce Peake will present a keynote lecture and performance entitled “Faustian parables of race and listening: Goethe to Robert Johnson, Frank Zappa to Jay Z” at the Museum of Culture and Environment at Central Washington University on Feb. 13. After the talk, he’ll be performing with faculty and students from Central Washington’s Jazz Studies Program.

Catherine Ryan has been awarded a scholarship from the Overseas Press Club Foundation. The funding will help Catherine with ongoing research and writing in Ghana.

Kyu Ho Youm’s book chapter, “International and Foreign Law,” has been published in Roy L. Moore and Michael D. Murray, Media Law and Ethics (4th ed., 2012). Kyu also was interviewed by legal projects editor, David Baarlaer, for Lawyers.com on Obsidian Finance Group v. Cox (D. Ore., 2011); by Mike Weisbart of tbs eFM’s “This Morning” in Seoul on “Are All Bloggers Journalists?”; by AP reporter Jeff Barnard for “Federal judge: Montana blogger is not journalist” (republished in Washington Post, “Federal judge: Mont. blogger in Ore. defamation suit isn’t journalist, not protected by laws”). Kyu also participated in the “Room for Debate” forum of the New York Times on “Are All Bloggers Journalists?” on Dec. 12, 2011. He has been invited to contribute an article on the global impact of the First Amendment on freedom of the press to the Journal of International Media and Entertainment Law and to serve on the international advisory board of this journal. He also has accepted an interview request for the freedom-of-expression series of the Harvard Law & Policy Review, and make a presentation at a multidisciplinary conference, titled “The Press, the Public, and the U.S. Supreme Court,” on January 26 and 27 at the Brigham Young University Law School in Provo, Utah.

Current and past SOJC faculty and graduates will present papers at the conference, including

Bill Kunz, Joy Chavez Mapaye, Kathleen Ryan, Gennadiy Chernov, David Koranda, Harsha Gangadharbatla, Ed Madison, Carol Stabile, Bish Sen, Micky Lee, Andre Sirois, Raul Reis, Bryce Peake, Wesley Jones, Kim Sheehan, Mary Erickson, Senyo Ofori-Parku, Randy Nichols, and Jher.

The conference organizing team includes: Lauren Bratslavsky, Jacob Dittmer, Al Stavitsky and Janet Wasko.

For information and to register for the conference (for a very nominal fee!), go to: http://journalism.uoregon.edu/whatistv/