You’re invited: A Discussion with danah boyd

The University of North Carolina School of Information and Library Science, and the UNC Social Software Working Group are proud to present a discussion with danah boyd.

Who: danah boyd
Where: Toy Lounge, Dey Hall, UNC-Chapel Hill Campus
When: September 14, 2006. 2-3:30PM.
Note: Seating limited, refreshments provided.

About danah:
boyd, a Ph.D. candidate at the University of California, Berkeley’s School of Information, explores how young people negotiate the presentation of self in online mediated contexts. Her research focuses on how this young audience engages with “digital publics” – connected social spaces such as MySpace, LiveJournal, Xanga and YouTube.

Currently, boyd is a Graduate Fellow at the USC Anneberg Center, and social media researcher at Yahoo! Research Berkeley. Her recent work has explored diverse topics such as the creation of digital publics in (Identity Production in a Networked Culture: Why Youth Heart MySpace), the design of culturally adaptive software (G/localization: When Global Information and Local Interaction Collide), and the exploration of folksonomy (HT06, Tagging Paper, Taxonomy, Flickr, Academic Article, ToRead).

At Berkeley, boyd is advised by Peter Lyman and Mimi Ito. She holds an M.S. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where she studied with Judith Donath at the Media Lab, and a B.A. from Brown University. boyd is frequently cited in top media, including the New York Times, Washington Post, NPR and She even went toe-to-toe with scary old Bill O’Reilly once. boyd blogs at, a must-read destination for those interested in social technology.

About this discussion:
The discussion will be structured by audience questions. The audience is asked to submit questions in advance. Questions may be submitted to Fred Stutzman at From these submitted questions, we’ll structure a discussion that will be open and wide-ranging.

Please feel free to forward this announcement as appropriate.

Citizen Journalism Unconference

Announcing BarCampRDU – July 22, 2006, Raleigh, NC

I’m very pleased to report that we’ve secured a venue for BarCampRDU. The kind folks at Red Hat have offered us space at their Centennial Campus offices on Saturday, July 22, 2006. BarCampRDU will run from 8:30AM (registration and breakfast) to 5:30PM. Now that we’ve got a date, please go and add yourself as an attendee to the wiki!

Here’s some other valuable information:

  • To stay up-to-date with BarCampRDU planning (low-to-medium volume), add yourself to our ibiblio-hosted mailing list.
  • To keep up-to-date with BarCampRDU announcements (low-volume), add this blog’s feed to your newsreader.

Now that we’ve secured a date and a venue – we need sponsors. Sponsors will help cover the costs of feeding, caffeinating and t-shirting BarCampers. Sponsorship is absolutely crucial for BarCampRDU – so please consider (contact me at fred @ if interested). Think of all the geeks you’ll be making happy.


I’m pleased to announce that we’re planning a BarCamp in the Raleigh-Durham area! A BarCamp is an unconference where lots of geek-oriented people get together to chat, teach, learn, eat and have fun. If you’ve never been to an unconference before, they are a lot of fun and worth experiencing.

We’re in the very early stages of planning BarCampRDU, but we know a couple of things we need. We need people to help out with BarCampRDU’s planning and execution. We need sponsors to help cover the costs of refreshments and materials. We need space to host the conference (150 people, hosted on a Saturday). Most importantly, we need campers to come learn, teach and have a great time at BarCampRDU.

To get involved, you’ll want to visit the BarCampRDU website, where you can see the preliminary planning that’s gone on. You should also subscribe to the BarCampRDU mailing list, as this will be the place we have most of our planning discussions. However, if you just have a simple question – don’t hesitate to contact me at

BarCampRDU will be free for all campers, it will be hosted on a Saturday in July (possibly July 8th), and everyone is invited to attend (You need not be from RDU area). To help spread the word, we ask that you blog about BarCampRDU, email your friends, whatever. We can only get the word out with your help. Finally, I hope that you’ll think about coming out – BarCamps have been great successes around the country, and we’d like to do the same here!

Lyceum Public Beta

In preparation for the formal announcment and code release at the end of this month, the Lyceum team is running a public test intallation of the code. Check it out:

Lyceum Public Beta

The front page explains everything. Basically, sign up for a blog (or several), write posts, adjust settings, comment on other people’s blogs, and then send bug reports to lyceum-bugs AT lists DOT ibiblio DOT org.

SXSW Interactive

I’ll be attending SXSW Interactive this year. Lyceum will have been released two or three weeks beforehand, and I’m hoping there will be a bit of Lyceum buzz among a certain geeky, bloggy crowd at the conference.

The SXSW Interactive folks put together an open-registration blog:

The SXSW Interactive Community Blog is your space to discuss specific panels and events, rant about tech-related issues, wax philosophic, hookup with friends, talk about where to get some good BBQ… whatever. In fact, we want you to guide and develop this space according to your innermost needs and desires.

A great idea.

I think I’m the only ibiblian going. ibiblio friend and lab fixture Terrell is going as well. If any ibiblog readers out there are going to be there, drop us a note in the comments.

I also might swing by BarCampAustin.

Jimmy Wales Speaks

You know Wikipedia rocks your world. What other site has articles on UK Grime, toothpaste, and tasmanian devils?

We at Ibiblio had the good fortune to host Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales as part of our ongoing Ibiblio Speakers Series. Wales shared the philosophy and methodology behind Wikipedia with a packed UNC lecture hall on October 5th, 2005 and presented 10 Open Culture challenges to the audience.

Since you missed the talk we thought we’d make it available on the interwebs in Mpeg1, Mpeg4, and Mp3 formats. Go get’em.

Podcast of Facebook Talk

Brian Russell, of, has podcast Fred Stutzman’s talk on The Facebook. Check it out here! Thanks, Brian!

The Freshman Facebook Zeitgeist

One of the interesting things I’ve been doing with my Facebook studies (see here, here, and here for more info) is collecting data on the Freshman class over time. I believe that the Freshman can tell us a lot about technology and adoption trends, and from a broader perspective, what social and political trends may be emerging on campus. To both extents, it’s fairly easy to pull out some simple metrics on these from my collected data. I’ll present a little of that data here.

First, who uses the Facebook

Basing my data analysis on these UNC-provided figures, I can say with relative confidence that nearly every Freshman on campus uses TheFacebook. On day 1 of class, I was able to discover 3095 Freshman profiles (!!!). 5 weeks later, I was able to discover 3292 Freshman profiles. 88 percent of Freshmen have an active profile on the Facebook. Lets look at these trends over time:

Click on any graph for a larger version

This graph shows total Freshman profiles found, and the lower line in the graph indicates the 2005 Freshman profiles with no “Privacy” flags set. I’ve found that a little more than 1% of Freshmen use privacy flags. Interestingly, privacy use has declined over time, at a constant rate (Week 1: 3% privacy use; Week 3: 1.5% privacy use; Week 5: 1% privacy use). This feeds into the notion that students that do not share their profiles online are not “participating” as normal social actors.

Interesting in this data is the “Week 4 depression”, which may represent students having buyers remorse about living so publicly. This is just a guess, though.

How often are Freshmen using the facebook?

One of the questions posed to me during a recent talk was “How often are students using the Facebook”, which I roughly translate to “How often are students logging in to the system, etc”. Facebook does not provide “last access” data, though it does provide “last update” information, indicating the last time the user has updated their profile. Accepting that “updating” one’s profile places a slightly higher bar on system use than simply “logging in”, I took a look at how often students are updating their profile. The results amazed me.

Using data collected on September 27, I analyzed last update; as you can see, 2871 profiles were updated in September, with 1819 profiles updated in the last week. I was really blown away by this, so I broke out the September data by day.

We can clearly see a trend that profiles are being updated most frequently in the days preceding the data collection. Assuming that “last update” stands in as a good proxy for system use, I believe we can safely say that students are using TheFacebook extremely frequently.

Friend network expansion

One of the interesting metrics we can pull out of the data is average friend network size; in doing so, we watch the obvious and interesting aggregation of a social network on campus.

The average moves up at a fairly regular interval. For the network geeks out there, here’s data on the Freshman social network size:

Week 1: 3095 nodes, 144,260 edges
Week 2: 3188 nodes, 167,783 edges
Week 3: 3241 nodes, 198,668 edges
Week 4: 3217 nodes, 218,534 edges
Week 5: 3292 nodes, 245,883 edges

Freshmen political orientation

2423 Freshmen report a political orientation in the Facebook; this is 74%, or about 3 out of ever 4 students. Reported here are some well thought out reasons why to take political orientation data in the Facebook with a grain of salt. And to that extent, I agree completely. The notion of labeling in the Facebook may be completely arbitrary; a good amount of the data in the system represents in-jokes and the like. The students use codes in the system to communicate and display in-network group strength and identity. Stepping back from that, though, I still think its interesting to see the data. And of course, it has surprised me.

While Liberal students again outnumber Conservative students, there is suprising parity between the two factions (assuming, of course, that UNC is a liberal institution). Is this what the post-9/11 student body looks like? When political orientation becomes a face-value aspect of identity, how does it force factionization in friend-making behaviors? If we all purport to know each other’s politics, is it not hard to imagine freshmen making decisions based on this highly characteristic identity element? Please see this post for more information on this data, the pooling that goes on, etc.

Now, for some fun

First, I present what I’m calling the Happy Index. This is Freshmen relationship identification over time. I’ve decided to include all fields available in the Facebook, though the graph can more effectively be segregated along Single/Not-Single lines. It is interesting to see how Married and Open Relationship increase over time as the in-joke nature of the claim moves through the network. Since the network size changes each week, this is presented as a ratio of the total network.

Finally, I analyzed what sort of websites students are identifying as their personal websites. As we might expect, the majority of personal websites claimed by students are of the photo, blog, or profile hosting nature.

Interestingly, only six sites were returned, with not one being a personal site. Not one freshman reports using his or her UNC provided webspace. This is alarming, but not surprising.

For questions about this data, please contact Fred Stutzman

Notes from the Move

New Servers (well, sort of!), New Racks (very new), New Datacenter (again, very new). Here’s pics from the ultra fun move.

Jon Manages

Boxes are Moved

Boxes are Trucked

Another View

Don’t show this pic to OSHA

A little art

The new Racks

Tuesday at the ‘Lab

Did you see the story about roaming buffalo herds in Maryland? Indeed, this story is accompanied by one of the strangest photos I’ve seen in a while.

How strange is this?

Turning to other events in the news…

CampusProgress posts the MP3 of the Jeff Tweedy/Larry Lessig free culture discussion that occurred at the NYPL last month. Download and enjoy – but there’s no metadata associated with the file, so you’ll have to add the info.

Pictures from Franklin

Here’s a quick quick link to Fred’s galleries of Franklin street after the UNC win. Not too much mayhem, the night was beautiful and fun-filled.

Introducing Bloggy!

For those of you who thought that Lyceum and Osprey were ibiblio’s two big development projects, we’ve got a little surprise. Our hardware and software hackers have been hard at work on the secret Bloggy project, which we unveil today! Surf over to the main site to see Bloggy in action.

For the meanwhile, here’s a pic…


To Do This Weekend

Updated: Sat, 10:30AM – Well, it appears that Designbox is only open from 10-6 on the Weekdays. Good luck getting over to Raleigh during those beyond-inconvenient hours. Too bad…sorry this rec didn’t work out.

When you aren’t getting your basketball overload, head over to Raleigh to the Designbox Gallery to see the Paul Frederich curated show The Art of Hellcar. Hellcar, which you can check out here (scroll to the bottom), was introduced to me by Lab-friend Dave Mason – it’s great. The News and Observer gave it a writeup in this weekend’s Lifestyles. With art ranging from 25-100 dollars, it should be a great show.

Here’s Designbox’s writeup:

Opening up the gallery for 2005, Designbox is pleased to have our own Paul Friedrich curate a show comprised of 10 talented comic artists known for their work in HELLCAR. HELLCAR is a nationally distributed comic book magazine featuring the greatest cartoon talent in America. “The Art of HELLCAR” will feature original artwork and animation by the artists based on their comic strips.

Artists of the show represent some of the best of the cutting edge of comic art in the country: from the dark monsters of Gus Fink (who currently has an ebay sale of a million dollars for all of his work for one year) to Casey Porn’s poodles in space ships. Additionally, Eric Knisely will be premiering the short animated feature “Gateless Gate,” a collaboration with Brooklyn’s Barnstormer, Mike Houston. Other artists include Paul Friedrich, Stephanie Freese, David Rose, Bob Schotte, Angi Shearstone, Chris Yambar, and Kevin Dixon.

Designbox is located at 315 S. Bloodworth Street in Raleigh, NC.

Triangle Bloggers Afters.

It all came off rather well despite having grown to over 5 times the size of attendance that we had originally anticipated. Good discussions. Good behavior. Good people meeting good people. Props to Anton for getting this going and making it happen. Props to Fred for being on top of the wireless access and much more. Props to Jen O’Bryan who made it possible for us to know each other’s names and sites. Props to TJ and John Joseph for taping the event. Special thanks to Ed Cone and to Dan Gillmor for leading discussions. Thanks to the folks at for providing the drinks and donuts.
What was it like? There is a nice collection of live-blog postings on the conference wiki. If you have notes, pictures and/or live blog entries, please add yourself.
I’m learning what went on from the wiki myself. When you are in the middle of things, you don’t get to pay the attention that you’d like to –especially if you are me and the laptop that you brought ends up being the one projected for folks to see the blogs in question and then it starts dropping the wireless at random intervals –grrr. My ancient T-book needs to be traded in.
Sally Greene took some pictures.

Blog Together – Feb 12 and more

The Triangle Bloggers Conference has grown to over 120 registered
participants including representatives from local and regional presses.

Three Blogger Events are coming your way in the next week. Triangle Bloggers Conference in Murphey Hall (Saturday 2/12), Dan Gillmor talk in Carroll Hall (Monday 2/14) and in Greensboro Dave Winer at the News and Record (Wednesday 2/9). Details and links below.

Triangle Bloggers Conference
Saturday, February 12
9 a.m. – noon:30 (and beyond) Murphey Hall 116
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Learn more

Dan Gillmor public talk
We the Media: Grassroots Journalism for the People, by the People
Monday February 14, 3:30
Freedom Forum Conference Center
Carroll Hall, UNC
Learn more

Dave Winer, community journalism discussion
Wednesday February 9, 7 p.m.
200 East Market St., Greensboro
Learn more

ibiblio brings Dan Gillmor to Chapel Hill – February 14

ibiblio will host author, journalist and blogger Dan Gillmor for a public talk on Valentine’s Day.

TriBlogCon: New Venue! Murphey Hall

The Triangle Bloggers Conference 2005 has outgrown the room we had reserved in Carroll Hall. I’ve secured the newly renovated auditorium in Murphey Hall nearby known as MU116. This is the Classics Department building so it comes complete with Ashcroft-offending statues at the entrance to the room. Tasteful, classic and partically clothed. The room has comfortable seating, plenty of technology and wireless access.
So the new info is:

Saturday, February 12
9 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Murphy Hall 116
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill