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National Digital Forum to be Held in Wellington

National Digital Forum Brings the Internet’s Brightest Thinkers to Wellington

This November will see some of the biggest thinkers in the digital world converge in Wellington for the National Digital Forum (25–26 November, Te Papa), an annual conference about digital interaction with culture and heritage.

Travelling from San Francisco is Brewster Kahle, renowned founder of the Internet Archive, an organisation established in 1998 with the goal of archiving the entire internet. The Internet Archive provides free access to millions of websites, music, moving images, and nearly three million public domain books. Kahle is a member of the Internet Hall of Fame and has been heavily involved in major developments of the World Wide Web for over 25 years. He is an advocate for a free and open internet and universal access to all knowledge.

Joining Kahle will be Mia Ridge from the Open University in the United Kingdom. Ridge is a leading thinker on the role of galleries, libraries, archives, and museums (GLAM) in the digital age. She proposes big changes and new ideas for the work of memory institutions, particularly in the area of crowdsourcing information about heritage collections through games and other interactive activities.

The Museum of Old and New Art (MONA) in Tasmania has been described by its founder David Walsh as a “subversive adult Disneyland”. The “unmuseum” has received critical acclaim and much comment since opening in 2011 for its risk-taking approach, much of which is due to its Creative Director, Leigh Carmichael, who will also be speaking at the National Digital Forum. Carmichael is the instigator and director of MONA FOMA and DARK MOFO, MONA’s massive summer and winter festivals of art, music, film, and interactive performance, and will speak about creative risk and MONA’s “anti-marketing” ethos.

Two New Zealand keynote speakers will bring a fascinating local perspective to the conference. Evelyn Wareham is a member of the NZ Data Futures Forum and will speak about the potential of data to enrich and unlock New Zealand’s potential. Evelyn will be followed by Rick Shera, an intellectual property lawyer with a deep interest and understanding of some of the big issues of our time: online privacy, digital copyright, and cybercitizenship. Shera is a former president of InternetNZ where he was instrumental in the .nz domain name and its governance policies.


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