CFP: [Film] Digital Labour: Workers, Authors, Citizens.

full name / name of organization: 
Matt Stahl
contact email: 
mstahl@uwo.ca

Call for Papers

Digital Labour: Workers, Authors, Citizens.

A conference hosted by the Digital Labour Group (DLG), Faculty of Information and Media Studies,
University of Western Ontario, October16-18, 2009, London, Ontario, Canada.

'Digital Labour: Workers, Authors, Citizens' addresses the implications of digital labour as they
are emerging in practice, politics, policy, and theoretical enquiry. As workers, as authors, and as
citizens, individuals are increasingly summoned and disciplined by new digital technologies that
define the workplace and produce ever more complex regimes of surveillance and control. At the
same time, new possibilities for agency and new spaces for collectivity are born from these
multiplying digital innovations. This conference aims to explore this social dialectic, with a
specific focus on new forms of labour.

The changing conditions of digital capitalism blur distinctions between workers, authors and
citizens as often as they clarify them. Digital workers, for example, are often authors of content
for the increasingly convergent and synergistic end markets of entertainment capitalism – but
authors whose rights as such have been thoroughly alienated. Citizens are often compelled to
construct their identities in such a way as to produce the flexible and entrepreneurial selves
demanded by the heavily consumer-oriented 'experience and attention economies' of digitalized
post-Fordism.

How might we come to understand the breakdown of distinctions between labour and creativity,
work and authorship, value and productive excess in the new digital economy? What is labour in
an era where participation in the cultural industries is the preferred conduit to autonomy and
self-valorization? What struggles do entertainment workers, information workers, and workers in
an increasingly digitalized manufacturing sector share in common? What might recent theorizing
on the infinitely malleable 'post-Fordist image worker' tell us about the nature of affective ties to
states and other political formations in the twenty-first century?

Policy makers, along with workers and union activists from the entertainment, information and
manufacturing sectors will assist academic specialists in assessing these and other crucial
questions.

Papers, reading no more than 20 minutes in length, that address any of the above matters, or
cognate ones, are now being solicited. Please submit your brief abstract by February 1, 2009, to
Jonathan Burston at jburston_at_uwo.ca. An editorial board will examine all submissions and issue
acceptances no later than March 15, 2009.

Thank you for circulating this call to any researchers at your institution, or elsewhere, who may
be interested.

The Digital Labour Conference Organizing Committee at the Faculty of Information and Media
Studies, University of Western Ontario:

Jonathan Burston, Edward Comor, James Compton, Nick Dyer-Witheford, Alison Hearn, Ajit Pyati,
Sandra Smeltzer, Matt Stahl, Sam Trosow

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Received on Mon Oct 27 2008 - 11:15:59 EST

cfp categories: 
film_and_television