Assignment 2 Submissions

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Submission Instructions

This assignment is due on February 21. Grading for this assignment is on a 5-point scale; late assignments will be docked 1 point for each day they are late (assignments submitted 4 days late or later will have a maximum grade of 1 point).

Please make sure the name of your file includes your name (example: Name_Assignment2.doc) to avoid overwriting someone else's assignment. The upload file link is to the left, under toolbox. Once you've uploaded your file, please link to it following the format below:

  • Name:
  • Prospectus title:
  • Link to prospectus: (the file you uploaded)

If you have trouble finding the file you uploaded, check the list of uploaded files.


Everyone will receive an additional participation grade for this assignment. You should read through everyone's proposals after they are uploaded and add constructive comments below the proposal on which you're commenting. Comments should be submitted by March 6 so you have time to incorporate them, if applicable, into your project outline. Please remember to sign your comments!


Name: You-Hwa Hsiao
Prospectus: ACTA and the protests – a reaction to the governmental control extending into the cyber world[1]
Hi You-Hwa, the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) sounds like a very interesting topic. I'm curious to hear more about how you plan to monitor the anti-ACTA community while you explore the impact of ACTA on online behavior. Have fun! Aditkowsky 19:48, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

I like your prospectus and your topic is relevant. In particular, I find it interesting that hacking and cyberattacks are viewed as a sign of protest and that this protest element has assumed nontraditional forms. I think that you are covering a lot of ground with your thesis and you may want to focus on a particular dimension of ACTA/response to ACTA. --Jimmyh 22:24, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: Harvard212
Prospectus: Being Nice and Free Speech on the Internet[2]
Harvard212 16:34 EST, 21 February 2012
Hi @Harvard212, I'd love to hear more about the community you plan to study. It sounds like you've lined up a good framework for starting your review and it's now a matter of narrowing down the scope. Good luck! Aditkowsky 19:41, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

Your project is ambitious and deals with philosophical/sociological questions regarding the expansive internet and how norms can benefit the entire community. While I am not sure if a general set of norms can be established with millions of users from across the world with their own agendas and online needs, obviously Wikipedia would be a good example of norms being established and these norms are established within the websites themselves. Are you focusing more on norms or norms "as set by law"? How do norms of one website vary with another similar website based on the needs of the consumer? Good start. --Jimmyh 22:30, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: BSK342
Prospectus: Community, Architecture, and Regulation in the Something Awful Forum Space [3]
BSK342 21:30, 21 February 2012 (UTC)
Cool topic. I'm particularly interested in what you observe/learn about people's willingness to pay for additional services. So often websites/applications/businesses struggle with how to monetize a good idea - perhaps your research will shed some light on this for managers of online communities. Good luck! Aditkowsky 19:57, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

I think your project sounds interesting and you are asking many questions that applies to all types of forums and online social behavior. Although I am not familiar with the Something Awful forums, I agree with Aditkowsky that it is interesting that the site does charge a subscription fee to post comments. This could be an interesting point of departure. Is the quality of the content stronger if people are paying for access? Does the subscription fee filter out those who may not be as serious about the forum? Good work. --Jimmyh 22:40, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: Blake Geno
Prospectus: Anonymity, Privacy and Evolving Tools [4]
BlakeGeno 20:58, 21 February 2012 (UTC) Comments:
Hi Blake, in thinking about your project, it might be interesting to select a few sites using facebook connect and evaluate how this option can impact user privacy and anonymity. It seems like this could sync up with the themes you discuss in your prospectus while also narrowing the scope. Good luck! Aditkowsky 20:03, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

Hello Blake. Your project does pose some significant questions as to the types of data that sites like Facebook collect and what that information is used for. You can define the goal of collecting information into two categories; positive (improving the user experience) and negative (selling the information for marketing purposes). Great research question. Hopefully you will be able to focus on more specific dimension of this important. --Jimmyh 22:48, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: Abby Bergman
Prospectus Title: Pinterest: Visually Arrested
Link to Prospectus: [5]
Aberg 19:55, 21 February 2012 (UTC)
Hi Abby, I applaud you for finding something meaty to explore with Pinterest. I'm curious as to how you will monitor instances of reported infringement on the site. Perhaps you could figure out which companies complain the most and then intentionally post their images so you can experience Pinterest's process for addressing potential infringement firsthand? (Maybe run that by one of the lawyers in class first....) Have fun! Aditkowsky 20:11, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

I think you raise some important questions in regards to copyright laws and Fair Use. Your questions are relevant and you have a good thesis question. I checked out for the first time now and I think the Fair Use argument is validated. Good job with the prospectus! --Jimmyh 22:55, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: Jennifer Lopez
Prospectus title: The New Era of Online Activism
Prospectus: Final Project Prospectus
JennLopez 21:38, 21 February 2012 (UTC)
Comments: Hi Jennifer, I'm very much looking forward to seeing your video interviews once they come together. In additional to the perspectives of founders, I'm also interested to hear more from the participants in the campaigns you study. Perhaps you could reach out to community members as well. Good luck! Aditkowsky 20:18, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

Your topic is very relevant with the current affairs of United States and the world. I think it is safe to conclude that online protest movements are making a serious impact on political and social issues. As you continue your research, I would focus on how online protest movements are effective. I think your reference to Benkler's work is a good step in that direction. I think you should also explore the notion of empowerment and whether online protest sites may foster personal empowerment in the same and different ways as more traditional protest movements. What mechanisms were the same and different with the SOPA, Susan Komen and Bank of America online movements? --Jimmyh 23:06, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: Just Johnny
Prospectus: Assignmnt 2 The Social Network
A social network will be constructed for the course. Feel free to contact, as this may be a possible group project. Just Johnny 21:48, 21 February 2012 (UTC)

Hi @Just Johnny, I'm intrigued by your idea for creating a social network. You write that "code will be the law which dictates behavior within the site". I'd love to hear more about the underlying concept and specific vision for the site and how you plan to restrict choice and behavior through code. Also, what is the appeal of your site vs. the numerous other social networking sites and forums available to users? What is your value proposition? Looking forward to seeing how your site evolves over the rest of the semester. Aditkowsky 20:25, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

You certainly are undertaking an ambitious project and I think your conclusions can be fascinating. I agree with a few points/questions made by Aditkowsky. From what I gather, you would like to create a Wikipedia-esque social network in which the content/services are generated by the users in a dynamic environment. You also mentioned that a screening process may be required to preserve the integrity of the site. Is this site intended to be a study or actually lead to a practical site that people would want to join? If so, I would imagine that some core service or services may need to be created to attract and motivate users to contribute to the site (i.e. Wikipedia and information). Good luck on this very ambitious concept. --Jimmyh 23:15, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: Fabian Celis J
Prospectus title: The Role of the Internet in Distance Education: The Open University Case
Prospectus: Final Project Prospectus
Fabiancelisj 19:09, 21 February 2012 (UTC)
Hi Fabian, studying distance learning in the Internet age seems like a great topic - and very appropriate - for this class. One aspect that I'd like to hear more about is the creation of a classroom community despite geography. You might even consider using our class as a test case. For example, I attend class in person but for the past two weeks, I've been using Adobe Connect to participate in the robust discussion that's happening among students who are primarily not in the classroom. In a hybrid class like ours, how do you break down the wall that separates "distance" and "in-person" students to create a more cohesive community? What architecture, systems, and culture do you need to make it work? Aditkowsky 20:34, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

Distance education is a great aspect of how the internet has changed how we learn as individuals. I took my first live online course last semester using a program called Elluminate and I would check out how these types of interfaces can change the entire process of how classes (particularly discussion-based classes) are taught and how students can interact with other individuals from across the whole country and the entire world. A comparison of how unique methodologies specific to online education improves the entire classroom experience when compared to traditional in-classroom methods would be a good approach. Great subject and good luck with your work.

--Jimmyh 23:27, 26 February 2012 (UTC) Name: André Pase and Priscila Lollo
Prospectus title: When two worlds collide, digital TV and online video in an age of transformation
Research Focus: online video x tv
Prospectus: Assignment 2
Andrepase 20:17, 21 February 2012 (UTC)
Hi André and Priscilla, I'm looking forward to learning more about how the Brazilian government and Brazilian companies and users are adapting to the changes in video delivery systems. I'm curious to hear more about the framework you plan to use for exploring the topic and I was also wondering if there is a specific community that you plan to follow. Since much of the class' focus seems to be on US and European examples, I think the Brazilian focus will be very interesting. Good luck! Aditkowsky 20:43, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: Alexis Ditkowsky
Prospectus title: Pinterest
Prospectus: Final Project Prospectus
Hi Alexis, I would like to offer two sources which may be useful to supplement your research. The first, the Millennium Development Goals (MDG), are a list of 8 goals adopted by the United Nations in an effort to eradicate poverty by the year 2015. Several of the goals involve online access for poor countries, and one goal specifically addresses gender equality. Millennium Goals Main Site And the second source, Taking IT Global, is rich in content and will provide a wealth of information and resource material. Good luck with your project, it looks interesting and informative.Louiscelli

@Louiscelli Thanks so much! I will check these out. Aditkowsky 20:47, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: James Harris
Prospectus title: The Internet and “Bridging the Gap” in Politics
Prospectus: Prospectus
--Jimmyh 22:28, 20 February 2012 (UTC)

Hi James, I love the concept, I’m just a little fuzzy on the thesis. Is the main focus going to concentrate on the elected-official/constituent relationship, or the paradigm shift of political campaign support? Louiscelli

Hi James, this is a great topic not only because of the timing but also because online campaigning and fundraising have had four years to evolve since the Dean and Obama campaigns in 2007/2008. One aspect you might decide to hone in on is the relationship of politicians to their constituents on their social networking sites. For example, Sarah Palin has been known to ban commenters who disagree with her viewpoint and Anthony Weiner used twitter to send provocative messages to his followers. Those are two high-profile ways of engaging or disengaging with followers but it might be interesting to look at a politician or two who actively foster an online community and respond thoughtfully and collaboratively to criticism vs. politicians who use social media as a one-way communications street. Have fun! Aditkowsky 22:42, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: Alex Lloyd-Evans
Prospectus Title: Social Structure's on the Writer's Forums of
Research Focus: Cracked
Prospectus: Final Project Prospectus
Hi Alex, Is this line correct – “free to enter forum”? I don’t understand what that means. This looks like it will be an interesting project. I wonder if the editors will be surprised by your findings, or possibly take issue with your conclusion, depending on the outcome. I am really looking forward to reading your paper.Louiscelli

Hi Alex, unsolicited suggestion here but it would be really funny if your final project was formatted like a Cracked article and you gave the class an opportunity to post comments before the final submission. Then you could pull together a final version and comment on the process as it relates back to Cracked. Good luck! Aditkowsky 22:48, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: Jeff Kimble
Prospectus title: Internet E-Commerce
Prospectus: [6]
JeffKimble 14:25, 21 February 2012 (UTC)
Hi Jeff, While I am sure there will be plenty of studies that address this, it will be nice to see the data synthesized, analyzed, and compacted into a short paper. You certainly will have lots of data to pour through. I will be particularly interested in some of your research as it will complement my project as well. Good luck, and if I run across any statistics that may be beneficial to your research, I’ll be sure to forward it along.Louiscelli

Hi Jeff, one thing you might consider exploring is how some people feel that e-commerce signals the end of a community even though many e-commerce sites actually promote a sense of community (e.g. etsy) and bring people together in spite of their geographical differences. This Slate article and the flurry of comments might be interesting for you to check out, although it doesn't focus on the online community angle. Cheers! Aditkowsky 22:59, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: Louis Celli
Prospectus title: e-commerce Taxation
Prospectus:The Future of e-commerce Taxation
Hi Louis, your project sounds really interesting - I'm looking forward to seeing how your research comes together and what your final recommendations are. The scope does seem a bit daunting, though. Perhaps you could focus in on the impact to sellers and buyers, for example, and on the changed transaction experience for users. Good luck! Aditkowsky 23:10, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: Emanuele Dominici
Prospectus title: Terrorist Websites
Prospectus: Final Project Prospectus
Emanuele 16:06, 21 February 2012 (UTC)

Hi Emanuele, This is going to be an exciting paper indeed. This is a whopper and you might have trouble containing it to 10 pages. The First Amendment question might be a great place to start, then begin to wind in the Patriot act, while comparing it to the Espionage act of 1917. I can’t wait to read this paper, good luck!Louiscelli

Hi Emanuele, very interesting topic. I'm trying to remember the show I listened to over the summer about infiltrating online forums that are used for recruiting new members. The story also touched on the use of video games for recruitment. I'll send the link once I remember what the show is.... Good luck! Aditkowsky 23:26, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: Julia Brav
Prospectus title: Ask MetaFilter
Prospectus: Prospectus
Jlynnping 17:41, 21 February 2012 (UTC)Jlynnping

Hi Julia, I really like how interactive your project is and how participating in the community is an important part of your research methodology. While moderation and desire for quality are two reasons why people might choose Ask MeFi over other sites, I'd be curious to hear more about how you find the quality and depth of responses on the site. For example, while other Q&A sites might be more of a free-for-all, are there times when quantity is of greater benefit than tightly proscribed quality? Good luck! Aditkowsky 01:40, 27 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: Samantha Zakuto
Prospectus title: Managing a Flexible Work/Life Balance: Legal Ramifications of Facebook
Prospectus: Prospectus
Hi Samantha, this is a really interesting topic and there are numerous directions you could take it. If you're interested in honing in on the relationship between offline and online behavior and speech, I can send over a bunch of readings about student free speech in schools. Additionally, the boundary between online/in school is still hotly debated - the Supreme Court recently refused to hear appeals related to online attacks against school officials and students (Huffington Post). Good luck! Aditkowsky 02:00, 27 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: Nicholas Thibodeau
Prospectus title: Anonymous
Prospectus: [7]
Nthib 17:59, 21 February 2012 (UTC)
Hi Nicholas, I'm looking forward to learning more about Anonymous in your final report. While this may lead you to murky legal waters, it would be cool if you could find a way to engage with the community in some way, or at least explore the process of how one becomes a part of Anonymous. Here's what came up first when I Googled "how do you join anonymous": The Hacker News. It's very Matrix-y. Have fun! Aditkowsky 02:08, 27 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: Quynh Dang
Prospectus title: Yahoo! Answers
Prospectus: Prospectus
Qdang 18:14, 21 February 2012 (UTC)
Hi Quynh, two things come to mind when reading your prospectus. 1) What's the value to you of having more points, particularly since there isn't a chat function and the users are anonymous? 2) You might want to connect with Julia Brav, who is evaluating Ask MetaFilter. Perhaps you could develop some sort of collaboration? Good luck! Aditkowsky 02:13, 27 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: Christopher Mejo
Prospectus title: Building a New Online Community in Drupal
Prospectus: Prospectus
chrism 18:40, 21 February 2012 (UTC)
Hi Christopher, I'm curious to hear more about how you plan to attract readers and community members to your site. What's the value proposition? Do people want financial and investment advice from their peers? Who is your target audience and what sites are they currently engaging with and how are they engaging with them? Developing your own site and attracting users in the next two months is quite an undertaking - maybe there's a way to explore the issues you raise in your prospectus by looking at existing forums for where people discuss finance? I can't say I go to this kind of site myself but Finance 3.0 came up during a Google search as did this article 50 Awesome Social Networks for Finance Geeks. Good luck! Aditkowsky 02:22, 27 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: Brendan Long
Prospectus title: Question & Answer Website Services and the Impact of Social Media
Brendanlong 19:47, 21 February 2012 (UTC)

Hi Brendan, Cool idea. I’m not on facebook, so I wasn’t aware that there was a separate section for answer seekers. I use dedicated Q & A sites quite a bit. The one’s that make me register before looking at them, I usually pass by. Mostly, I use sites dedicated to Android programming, other IT community sites, specific auto repair questions, and one legal questions site. On two occasions, I paid a small fee for “good” answers on The sites I have found to be credible and useful are; avvo (A V V O - looks like a W when they are close together).com for legal questions, (this is the site where I agreed to “donate” a token fee for a correct answer), for some of my Android questions, (again for Android), and (yep, again for Android stuff). It’s been my experience that experts tend to collect in likeminded online communities. I’m not sure what social network sites offer, but I think that intrinsically technical question seekers might need to go outside of the general social network platform in search of community sites dedicated to the specific topic. It will be a really interesting study – I’m looking forward to seeing your results. Best of luck. Louiscelli

Hi Brendan, Julia Brav and Quynh Dang are also looking at aspects of Q&A sites - it might be fun to try to find a way to work with them. In terms of your prospectus, I'm most intrigued by how successful Q&A is on social networking sites. What are the benefits and challenges? And how much is success dependent on your personal ability to engage your friends/contacts/followers vs. a larger community's engagement with a dedicated Q&A site? Aditkowsky 02:29, 27 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: Hope Solomon
Prospectus title: Communicating with Constituents through Twitter
Prospectus: Prospectus

Hds5 14:22, 21 February 2012 (UTC)
Hi Hope, this is a great topic and I look forward to following your research for the rest of the semester. It might be helpful to identify different kinds of twitter "engagement" and make an attempt at quantifying them. For example, how many @ replies are there vs. general status updates? Is there some way to evaluate the "quality" of the tweets? Do the politicians make use of hashtags and, if so, to what effect? It might also be interesting to note the number of followers at the start and end of the project. And finally, by the end of the project, do you have any best practices for politicians for how to engage their community and get (or at least seem like you're getting) things done? Have fun! Aditkowsky 02:38, 27 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: Yerzhan Temirbulatov
Prospectus title: Endless war on piracy
Prospectus: Prospectus

Erzhik 20:42, 21 February 2012 (UTC)
Hi Yerzhan, I'm very interested in the discussion of Russian torrent sites, particularly since so much of the class discussion is geared toward the US. I'd love to see a comparison between a site like Megaupload and the leading Russian torrent sites, and I'd also love to learn more about emergence of Tribler and its potential impact on file sharing. Good luck! Aditkowsky 02:47, 27 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: Tara Baechel
Prospectus title: The Internet, Adoption and the Privacy of Minors
Prospectus: Prospectus

User:TBaechel 21:25, 21 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: Manuel Valerio
Prospectus title: Internet, fame and speed to Market
Prospectus: [8]

Mvalerio 21:38, 21 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: Marjolein Siegenthaler
Prospectus name:

MSS 22:13, 21 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: Gregorian Hawke
Prospectus name:

Name:Mike Brant Prospectus Title: Children for Peace/Youth for Peace Online Community Prospectus: Mike 22:35, 21 February 2012 (UTC)

Name: David Taber
Prospectus: Coffee Shop vs. Grocery Store: Where and how local news is discussed on the web [9]
David Taber 16:15, 23 February 2012 (UTC)
I could have sworn I uploaded this on Tuesday, but it appears I forgot to hit submit. Sorry!