Circulations of Culture: On Social Distribution of Content: A Research Report (2012) [Polish/English]

30 January 2012, dusan

This report reconsiders a vision often encountered in the public debate: that of the cultural sphere destroyed by ‘pirates’ who illegally download and copy books, music and movies. The study was conducted by an interdisciplinary team of sociologists, anthropologists and media theorists from Centrum Cyfrowe Projekt: Polska, led by Mirek Filiciak, Justyna Hofmokl and Alek Tarkowski. Centrum Cyfrowe Projekt: Polska is a Polish non-governmental organization and research institution working with digital technologies towards greater civic and cultural engagement.

The research results demonstrate that the border between legal and illegal circulations of culture are often fluid and undefined – as the internet grows and changes faster than its regulation by the legal system. Three times more Poles participate in informal circulations of culture (mainly online) than they do in formal, market circulations (putting aside the issue of TV viewing). Surprisingly, those who obtain content informally, through the internet are among those who most often buy content in stores.

This report is the first of its kind to demonstrate in detail the character of informal participation of Poles in culture. Based on empirical data we show that the internet is not killing culture in Poland.

(in Polish)
Raport ‘Obiegi kultury. Społeczna cyrkulacja treści’ stawia pod znakiem zapytania obraz świata kultury niszczonego przez ‘piratów’ poprzez nielegalne ściąganie i kopiowanie muzyki, filmów i książek. Przeprowadzone przez zespół badaczy z Centrum Cyfrowego Projekt: Polska badanie pokazuje, że granice między legalnymi a nielegalnymi obiegami kultury są płynne i często niezdefiniowane, bo internet rozwija się szybciej, niż legislacja.

Pomijając telewizję, Polacy aż trzykrotnie częściej korzystają z kultury w sposób nieformalny niż formalny (odpowiednio 39% i 13%) – pożyczając sobie książki, oglądając filmy online lub ‘ścigając’ pliki z Sieci. Co zaskakujące, to właśnie te osoby które najczęściej ‘zdobywają’ treści kulturowe za pośrednictwem internetu również najczęściej kupują książki w księgarni, są klientami sklepów muzycznych i najczęstszymi bywalcami seansów kinowych.

Publikowany raport po raz pierwszy pokazuje nieformalny kontekst uczestnictwa Polaków w kulturze i podważa powtarzaną często tezę, że internet zabija kulturę.

Obiegy kultury. Społeczna cyrkulacja treści: Raport z badań
Written by Mirosław Filiciak, Justyna Hofmokl, Alek Tarkowski
Published by Centrum Cyfrowe, Warsaw, January 2012
Creative Commons License BY-SA 3.0 Polska
100 pages

English edition
Published in September 2012
125 pages

commentary (Glyn Moody, Techdirt, November 2012)

PDF [Polish]
PDF [English]
PDF (datasets, survey) [Polish]
View online (mashup version) [Polish]
View online (mashup version) [English]

Lawrence Lessig: Republic, Lost: How Money Corrupts Congress—and a Plan to Stop It (2011)

30 January 2012, dusan

In an era when special interests funnel huge amounts of money into our government—driven by shifts in campaign-finance rules and brought to new levels by the Supreme Court in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission—trust in our government has reached an all-time low. More than ever before, Americans believe that money buys results in Congress, and that business interests wield control over our legislature.

With heartfelt urgency and a keen desire for righting wrongs, Harvard law professor Lawrence Lessig takes a clear-eyed look at how we arrived at this crisis: how fundamentally good people, with good intentions, have allowed our democracy to be co-opted by outside interests, and how this exploitation has become entrenched in the system. Rejecting simple labels and reductive logic—and instead using examples that resonate as powerfully on the Right as on the Left—Lessig seeks out the root causes of our situation. He plumbs the issues of campaign financing and corporate lobbying, revealing the human faces and follies that have allowed corruption to take such a foothold in our system. He puts the issues in terms that nonwonks can understand, using real-world analogies and real human stories. And ultimately he calls for widespread mobilization and a new Constitutional Convention, presenting achievable solutions for regaining control of our corrupted—but redeemable—representational system. In this way, Lessig plots a roadmap for returning our republic to its intended greatness.

While America may be divided, Lessig vividly champions the idea that we can succeed if we accept that corruption is our common enemy and that we must find a way to fight against it. In REPUBLIC, LOST, he not only makes this need palpable and clear—he gives us the practical and intellectual tools to do something about it.

Publisher Twelve, New York/Boston, an imprint of Grand Central Publishing, October 2011
ISBN 0446576425, 9780446576420
384 pages, a movement to organize the call for a convention. website allows anyone to propose and vote on constitutional amendments.
video archive of the Conference on the Constitutional Convention (September 2011)
RootStrikers activist network

interview with the author (video, DemocracyNow!, January 2012), passage about a Constitutional Convention
commentary (Alesh Houdek,, November 2011)
review (Thomas B. Edsall, The New York Times, December 2011)

author’s book presentation (video)
google books


Domenico Quaranta, Yves Bernard (eds.): Holy Fire. Art of the Digital Age (2011)

29 January 2012, dusan

Produced as a catalogue for the exhibition Holy Fire, Art of the Digital Age (2008), this book is more than a simple catalogue. Along with the works of the 27 artists in the exhibition it features the editors’ essays along with a collective interview involving some of the most important representatives of the new media art world. 
Holy Fire is not a book on new media art, but an exploration of the contemporary art of the digital age, and a pamphlet against the new media art paradigm and the self-isolation in which these practices evolved in the last sixty years.
 In the words of Régine Debatty: “Forget the new, drop the media, enjoy art.”

With contributions by 
Inke Arns & Jacob Lillemose, Alexei Shulgin, Vuk Cosic, Régine Debatty, Steve Dietz, Olia Lialina & Dragan Espenschied, Patrick Lichty, Vicente Matallana, Eva & Franco Mattes, Christiane Paul, Magdalena Sawon & Tamas Banovich, Paul Slocum, Bruce Sterling, Michele Thursz, Mark Tribe, UBERMORGEN.COM, Karen A. Verschooren and many others.

Publisher LINK Editions, Brescia, November 2011
ISBN 978-1-4709-3874-1
Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 3.0 Unported License.
131 pages