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Leibniz Media Lectures

The Leibniz Media Lectures address current topics of scientific and social relevance. Renowned researchers present current theses and results in a presentation and discuss them with the guests.

The Leibniz Media Lectures take place at different locations. Since March 2020 online via Zoom. Once you have registered, the dial-in details will be sent to you by email shortly before the event begins.

Photo by Amol Tyagi on Unsplash
 

18 October, 2021, 4:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., online event via Zoom, the log-in details will be sent by email after the registration

The Rise and Fall of Social Bot Research

This Leibniz Media Lecture will be presented by the Digital Disinformation Hub at HBI. A short introduction will be given by Dr. Clara Iglesias Keller. The event will be held in English.

About the Presentation

The idea that social media is populated by countless "social bots" has become widely accepted. "Social bots" are assumed to be automated social media accounts operated by malicious actors with the aim of manipulating public opinion. Alleged "social bot armies" have been reported during the election of Donald Trump and the Brexit referendum, and, more recently, in the context of the Covid19 pandemic. In fact, however, the relevant research is based on inappropriate methods, the failure of which the researchers regularly try to conceal by withholding the raw data. The alleged "bots" from these studies are almost exclusively normal people who are misinterpreted as "bots".


About the Speakers

Prof. Dr. Florian Gallwitz is professor of computer science and media at the Nuremberg Institute of Technology. His main areas of expertise include pattern recognition in digital media and natural language-based human-computer interaction.
 
Michael Kreil is specialised in the analysis and processing of very large amounts of data for over two decades. For the last 10 years he has worked as a data scientist and data journalist. Since 2020, he has been working at BR Data.

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23 June, 2021, 5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., online event via Zoom, the log-in details will be sent by email after the registration

The History of Disinformation and Why It Still Matters Today

This Leibniz Media Lecture will be presented by the Digital Disinformation Hub at HBI. A short introduction will be given by Dr. Clara Iglesias Keller. The event will be held in English.

About the Presentation

To control information is to control the world. Information warfare or disinformation may seem like a new feature of our contemporary digital world. But it was just as crucial a century ago, when Germany tried to control world communications — and nearly succeeded. This talk will use that history to understand why elites try to manipulate information and what that means for research into contemporary disinformation. History, this talk suggests, is one crucial way to evaluate what is and is not new about our current moment.

About the Speaker

Dr. Heidi Tworek is associate professor of international history and public policy at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada. Her work examines the history and policy around media, hate speech, health communications, international organizations, and platform governance.

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Plakat Passoth30 March, 2021, 4:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., online event via Zoom, the log-in details will be sent by email after the registration

Plattformen, Infrastrukturen und Gemeinwohl: Digitale Technologien für gesellschaftlichen Zusammenhalt?

The online lecture will be held as part of the Hamburg branch of the Research Institute Social Cohesion. A short introduction will be given by Dr. Jan-Hinrik Schmidt.

About the Presentation

Digital infrastructures and the platforms that operate on them are firmly in private-sector hands. With a few exceptions, these are market-dominating companies such as Google or Amazon. Jan-Hendrik Passoth, Sociologist of Technology, explores the consequences of this dominance for competition and freedom of choice, but above all for democracy and civil society. 

About the Speaker

Jan-Hendrik Passoth is Professor of Sociology of Technology and Science & Technology Studies at the European New School of Digital Studies at the European University Viadrina in Frankfurt/Oder. He works on the role of digital infrastructures for democracy and politics, on software development as a responsible social practice, and on the possibilities of intervention in and criticism of digitization projects through critical design.

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Plakat Baack12 November 2020, 4:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., online event via Zoom, the log-in details will be sent by email after the registration

Das integrative Potenzial des Internets und der Stand der Forschung zu Filterblasen und Echokammern [The Integrative Potential of the Internet and the State of Research on Filter Bubbles and Echo Chambers]

The online lecture will be held as part of the Hamburg branch of the Research Institute Social Cohesion. A short introduction will be given by Dr. Jan-Hinrik Schmidt.

About the Presentation

Merja Mahrt will address the differences in the integrative potential of different media from the perspective of communication science and will show the current state of research on digital fragmentation. Do "filter bubbles" and "echo chambers" really exist? To what extent can they be a threat to social cohesion? In what respect can we give the all-clear signal?

About the Speaker

Prof. Dr. Merja Mahrt is substitute professor for communication and media science at the TU Chemnitz. In 2017, she completed her habilitation at the Heinrich Heine University in Düsseldorf with a thesis on digital fragmentation. She received her doctorate at the Universiteit van Amsterdam in 2010. Her research focuses on social functions and effects of media, especially online and offline in comparison.

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Plakat Baack16 December 2019, 6:15 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.,

Kids Online – Risk or Fun?

At this event, Prof. Dr. Uwe Hasebrink, Dr. Claudia Lampert and Kira Thiel will present the results of a current representative survey on the online experiences of children and young people and invite the participants to join them in a discussion.

About the Presentation

Children and young people use the Internet intensively and in very different ways. In doing so, they are confronted with a variety of risks. However, their risk perception and risk awareness do not always coincide with those of their parents. These are the results of the representative EU Kids Online Survey in Germany, conducted by the Leibniz Institute for Media Research | Hans-Bredow-Institut (HBI).

About the Speakers

Prof. Dr. Uwe Hasebrink is Director of the HBI, Dr. Claudia Lampert is Senior Researcher and Kira Thiel is Junior Researcher. Together they are investigating the online experiences of children and young people in Europe as part of the joint project EU Kids Online.

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