Online revolution via Twitter

6 years before, Thomas J. Watson Research Center Manager of the Management for Business Integrity Dr. Yurdaer Doğanata was guest for give a lecture to Izmir University. In his lecture, Dr. Doğanata said that: “There was a big earthquake in China five years before. China Geology Center did not explain anything in 3 months. Because, they wanted to be certain about earthquake degree. But, billions of Chinese, who were member of Twitter in US, became organized in half an hour. They started to collect donation in some bank accounts after the earthquake. Because, great number of Chinese tweets when the earthquake was continuing”. (Izmir University, http://www.izmir.edu.tr/tr/genel-haberler/3676-Depremi-en-hizli-twitter-haber-veriyor.html, 2013. Access date: 25 May 2014)
Second example is from Turkey. There was a big fire of mine in Soma in Turkey. 301 employees died in incident. More than 4 million tweets about the incident were taken in a week. Yaşar University Faculty of Communication Asst. Prof. Dr. Özlem Aşman Alikılıç gave an interview about it. She said that using of social media is increasing after the social events. People are following the social events via traditional media and social media. Moreover, participatory journalism is increasing very fast. Everyone produce their own data about social events. Because of this, people preferred the space on social media for mourn about Soma”. (Yaşar University, http://haber.yasar.edu.tr/2014/05/21/somanin-yasini-sosyal-medyada-da-yasadik/, 2014. Access date: 25 May 2014)
Battle fields were important in the past. Arenas were important for the democracy. Nonetheless, populations of countries are not allowed the gather. Habits are changing. Wars are became digital in 21th century (Ali Alışır, Star Newspaper, http://haber.stargazete.com/ege/ali-alisir-3b-21-yyda-cephe-savaslarinin-yerini-sanal-savaslar-aldi/haber-757474, 2013. Access date: 25 May 2014). In recent days, social media is important for shown the resistance. Plenty of people became organized on the Twitter for the Gezi resistance and Arab Spring. According to Alikılıç, these conditions are taken into consideration by governments. Therefore, people prefer the gather on the social media.

Reduce cost and improve by open sources softwares

Turkish idiom said that, two hands better than a hand. Commons knowledge is the best practice for it. Wide places are ensured for Wikipedia and similar practice by commons knowledge.
What is commons knowledge? If you write on tool of Wikipedia, what is common knowledge, you find this reply: “Common knowledge is knowledge that is known by everyone or nearly everyone, usually with reference to the community in which the term is used. Common knowledge need not concern one specific subject, e.g., science or history. Rather, common knowledge can be about a broad range of subjects, including science, literature, history, entertainment etc. Often, common knowledge does not need to be cited. Common knowledge is distinct from general knowledge. The latter has been defined by differential psychologists as referring to ‘culturally valued knowledge communicated by a range of non-specialist media’, and is considered an aspect of ability related to intelligence. Therefore there are substantial individual differences in general knowledge as opposed to common knowledge”.
But on the other hand, commons knowledge has to utilize another side which called software and open sources. Software and open sources are producing plenty of practices, which most knows is Linux, for commons knowledge. Together to produce is developer movement.
For instance, Samsung uses this way. Samsung works with wide numerous of scholars at many countries and universities. In this way, the project that produces in somewhere can develop by another scholar. These ways of work reduces costs and improve the project for Samsung. Hence, in recent years, Samsung has carried out a major attack against its rivals.

“Each of us is journalists!”

I took and published that on my instagram, twitter, and facebook account this photo by my smart phone when protest of Berkin Elvan funeral1. I was a citizen journalist who is the taking photo and producing information. There were many of them like me.

Internet, social media, blogs and etc. have been changing ours participatory habits. We are not only audience. Even we have become information producer. Now, especially young people are following agenda by the social media. Because, social media tools are faster than traditional media. And everyone can be citizen journalist on it. Social media tools have become more popular and nowadays further people wants to share their experiences about life. Therefore, numbers of blogs writer are increasing each passing day.

Conspicuously, columnists are preferring to write on their own blogs too. In my opinion, columnists who write mainstream media newspapers do not inexpression all their own thought. Blogs are very independent space for them. For instance, Tufan Türenç who is columnist on the Hürriyet or Ruşen Çakır who is columnist on Vatan have own blogs2. They share all new articles by social media channels. By this way, they have always been in relationship with citizen journalist and their audiences.

One of the most important news magazine which name is Newsweek was closed on 20123. Because, magazine could not struggle with digital publishing. The circulation of printed media is decreasing each passing day. Nonetheless digital media followers are increasing. In the future, digital media will replace printed media and citizen journalists will be effective more than today.

References

1 http://web.stagram.com/n/oyaaltar, www.facebook.com/oyaaltaryavuz, www.twitter.com/oyaaltar

2 www.tufanturenc.com, www.rusencakir.com

3 http://www.bbc.com/news/business-19989346, Access Date, 11th May 2014

Choose Your Own Adventure or Digital Stroytelling

A generation was growth with “Choose Your Own Adventure” in Turkey and world. This series is a series of children’s game books where each story is written from a second-person point of view, with the reader assuming the role of the protagonist and making choices that determine the main character’s actions and the plot’s outcome. Choose Your Own Adventure was one of the most popular children’s series during the 1980s and 1990s, selling more than 250 million copies between 1979 and 1998.

Technology is developing. Therefore, habits are changing too. Reading and sharing habits have very big differences than before. Hence, “Digital Storytelling” is a variation of Choose Your Own Adventure. Nowadays, sharing of individual experiences has wide space in personal social life. Especially, ordinary people, who want to be a pioneer or leader for something, want to share their experiences. Digital storytelling is the very important space for this. Everyone can use any part of media (video, photo or etc.). On the other hand, everyone can make interpretation about story. In this way, storytelling and human relations grow stronger. This relation is not established hegemonic. These horizontal relation positions ensure equality for everyone.

New arena for discussing in 21 century: Internet

World popularities are approximately over 7 billion. If we look at the internet usage around the world: approximately over 3 million people are internet users who 70% are using the internet every day. The number of internet users has grown by over 566% since 2000. Internet users use internet for research, banking, shopping, meeting people, information about health, making travel reservations and looking for jobs. Social networking users spend an average of 3,2 hours each day. Worlds the biggest social networking site is Facebook which has over 1 billion members. Youtube is ranking second and Twitter is ranking third (More Than 2 Billion People Use the Internet, Here’s What They’re Up To, May 9, 2013, The Cultireist, http://www.thecultureist.com/2013/05/09/how-many-people-use-the-internet-more-than-2-billion-infographic/, visit date April 26, 2014). In this case, Facebook can be called worlds third crowded country. (Doganata, Yurdaer, Izmir University, 2013) According to wordpress.com data, over 409 million people view more than 14.7 billion blog pages each month. Blog users produce about 44,5 million new posts and 56,7 million new comments each month.
Datas are shown that all people can not come together but all people who use internet can discuss, share or react something on the internet. Hence, internet is the important platform for the alternative media. It can be called “New arena for discussing in 21 century”.
Information pollution, illegality, problem of law can be seen on it. But it is the free platform for sharing experimenting, expressing thoughts and discussing. Therefore, some countries, like Turkey, occasionally totally or part of internet is being banned for their citizens. But according to Yurdaer Doganata who is Research Staff Member, IBM Research that it is not possible to completely ban the unmanaged Internet access from a single source.
Internet is hard to get in under control. The great masses can be mobilized by internet. Occupy demonstrations, Gezi and Ukraine sample are shown that internet will be more remarkable than today in the future. Internet will consider by decision making bodies of governments in the future.

Cultural jamming can be seen in democratic community

In the last decade in Turkey, internet has wide range of cultural jamming. Especially political jamming of subvertising can only be seen in social media like websites, blogs, facebook or twitter. Heberler tv show and Zaytung website are the most important samples for cultural jamming for Turkey.
Heberler can be liken to The Daily Show with Jon Steawart. The program, which based on the cultural and political jamming, was featured on Turkmax which is private channel on Digiturk. An anchorman and a commentator were commenting daily current and political issues. We have to use past tense when we are writing about Heberler because program was banned after Gezi demonstrations. Justification of ban was program’s producer and artist team had important role in Gezi.
For example of Heberler news:
Turkey’s famous pianist Fazıl Say, was sentenced to 10 months for his tweet (Fact). In addition, Minister of Justice said that “We do not have freedom for thoughts and expression. But everyone, who wants to expression their thoughts, can find a new way” (Their commenting).
Zaytung.org has a satiric language like Heberler. When the website was established that founders were inspired by “The Onion News” which has US origin. The website was established in 2010. They had made some groundless news at the beginning but they changed their strategy and started to make cultural and political jamming.
For example Zaytung.org news:
After celebrity of 23 April Children’s Day, Turkey has high morale: We have lots of children who were not killed by someone. (Ascription of Berkin Elvan)
The culture of democracy is important for cultural and especially political jamming. Cultural jamming can be seen in democratic community. But Turkey has changed their strategy and political attitude about democratic culture in recent years. Great numbers of journalist are in the prison in Turkey. The government cannot stand criticism. Therefore, cultural or political jamming do not have place on televisions or printed media and billboards. But on the other hand, political problems are rising political jamming. In process of time, understanding will be changed.

Community radio in Turkey: Government Publications and Private Publications

Radio history has different parts which are government publications and private publications in Turkey. Private publications has gone throught tough process to come to today. Occasionally, the protest has caused state monopoly. People protesting the closure of private radio car radio antennas were wearing black ribbons.
Turkey’s first radio broadcast was made in 1927 with private corporation. That was continued until 1964. Turkey Radio and Television Corporation (TRT) was established in 1964. Radio broadcasting was made by TRT until 1992. Government monopoly system was changed that year. (Kuyucu, M., Türkiye’de Özel Radyo Yayıncılığı: Ulusal Ölçekte Yayın Yapan Özel Radyo Kanallarının Yapıları Üzerine Bir Araştırma, 2013, İstanbul)
In that term, legal basis problems was induced some backlash. Community radio increased in number. Government could not control their publish content. And government had wanted to control number of community radio. When community radio broadcasting banned by government, people reacted by protest until legal basis was made. A radio station made publishing in a boat on the sea of Marmara. (https://eksisozluk.com/ozel-radyo-ve-televizyonlarin-kapatilmasi–1263906 – Access, 15 April 2014) This period resembles UK, US, Germany and France. The Boat That Rocked (2009) is the best movie about this period in UK. After banned Minister of Transport and Communication Yaşar Topçu had said that “We will shut down this radio station. We can not allow anyone tell that what you want. If you want when you want it to behave as we return to Patagonia. We do not allow such things.” (Cumhuriyet Newspaper, 24 September 1992)
1058 community radios are broadcasting in Turkey according to Radio and Television Supreme Council data in 2013. Music, news and kind of community programs are followed by approximative 2 million audience. Community radios are broadcasting 7 days 24 hours in 7 geographic area. Marmara area has maximum number of community radio. (Kuyucu, M., Türkiye’de Özel Radyo Yayıncılığı: Ulusal Ölçekte Yayın Yapan Özel Radyo Kanallarının Yapıları Üzerine Bir Araştırma, 2013, İstanbul)

Local community radio stations allows to communication for different local languages and minority groups. Despite different local languages and minority groups in Eastern in Turkey, less number of local community radio stations are broadcasting at there.

Repressive regime cause more production for videos (Week 5)

Labanese artist Rabih Mroué who had given an interview Radikal Newspaper’s columnist Pınar Öğünç said that our perception and production are affected by smart phone and their video recording. For instance, huge group of people had mobilized in Tunis, Egypt and Yemen after that videos. Active producers and/or citizens had recorded enemys (US army) who had acted in hostile and perniciously. On the other hand, US soldier was used video recording for propaganda at the same time.
The example above shows that alternative videos are vital. Records, which by citizens or active producers had recorded, are shown some tv channel or internet, state’s and people’s attitudes towards events affect. Therefore, occasionally, states are blocking some television channels or internet which allow shown that. Whereas, this records are indicator for democratical participation.
Government’s neo-liberal theory is content to rely on elected officials to represent the interests to citizens within a legally-structured political and economic framework, participatory theory seeks to involve citizens more directly in the democratic process (Held 1987, 4). Alternative media and alternative ways have not old history in Turkey like Europe, US or Argentina. Alternative film, video and television recently increase in Turkey. In last decade, limited participant television channels, for example +1 tv and halk tv, are broadcasting on satellite and internet. Nonetheless, wide range of television channels are broadcasting proper for mainstream media and dominant goverment. Particularly video and participant communication increase with cost-effective technology. Hence, youth who uses smart phone and some tecnology were very effective at the Gezi or Berkin Elvan’s protests. Those videos were remarkable and important with their discourse.
In that case, videos which are recorded by active producers are important. Especially protest demonstration videos which are shown grassroot’s real reaction against politic process are shown on internet. Therefore, frequently Youtube and social media like Twitter are forbidden in Turkey by goverment. As a consequence, more videos, documentary and film are shown in film festivals and on the different internet channel. Repressive regime cause more production for videos.

Who wants to be volunteer for publish Fanzine? (Week 4)

Fanzine is created by “fanatic” and “magazine” words which does not has an old history in Turkey. Fanzine is the significiant instance in alternative media which is independent from financial resources, and the hierarchical structure. Everyone can produce any fanzine who has a scissors and glue or duplicating possibility. Nevertheless, Turkey does not has large number of fanzine.
Turkey’s fanzine history has started with Mondo Trasho ve Laneth in 1991. Authors who had written about cinema, literature and music in Mondo Trasho. On the other hand Laneth’s authors had written about heavy metal only. The first number is only 35 printed copies of Laneth, has reached sales of 500 in the fourth edition. And the last edition had reached 2,700 copies when the fanzine was closed. But nowadays both of them are not running.
Publishing house does not prefer publish materials without famous authors in Turkey. As a consequence, being fanzine authors are preffered by students or who wants to be an famous author. This situation has three advantages. First one is that publishing fanzine is cheaper and more free than others. The second one is nick name is free to use. And third one is how many will be printed depends on the author’s request. Everyone can write their thoughts in free way. Therefore being fanzine authors are preffered usually by literature authors in Turkey who does not have any opportunity in publishing house. However everyone can write about politics, art, football or something like that.
The most important point for fanzine that who wants to be volunteer? Because, fanzine authors does not earn enough money for their life. They publish it in publishing house or cafes without money. Hence old fanzine authors has a another job for survive their life. As a result, fanzines does not have a long life in Turkey.

The alternative media is making it visible to the truth (Week 3)

Based on the “Another media is possible” idea of the alternative media has many different forms in the world. It gives voices to the voiceless, media power to the powerless as well as to transcend the filtering and cencorship of information by corporate information monopolies, state monopolies, or cultural monopolies in public information and communication. Plenty of web sites, tabloid magazines, comics, social platform, graffiti, news portal, public theatre can named in alternative media.
Content and form of traditional media are ideological. It is not independent of the state rules. Because of this, mainstream and/or traditional media have to faitful to rules which decides what can be said or not. Therefore, the most power of the alternative media is making it visible to the truth. Because, alternative media can not precluded in certain extent.
This condition be seen principally economic perspective, unemployment, sexism, ethnic discrimination, etc. Traditional media are covered by the rules of law and financial resources which are the most powerful cencorship. Therefore, number of alternative media producers are increasing with each passing day. And alternative media sources usually explain of the real reason and/or number for incidents. As a consequence, alternative media is crosscheck for traditional media and dominants.