keynote panelists

Jenna Burrell
(@jennaburrell) Jenna Burrell is an Associate Professor at the School of Information, UC-Berkeley. She is currently working on a book about rural communities that host critical Internet infrastructure such as fiber optic cables and data centers.
Sasha Costanza-Chock
(@schock) Sasha Costanza-Chock (pronouns: they/them or she/her) is a scholar, activist, designer, and media-maker, and currently Associate Professor of Civic Media at MIT. Their work focuses on social movements, transformative media organizing, and design justice. Sasha’s new book, Design Justice: Community-Led Practices to Build the Worlds We Need will be published by the MIT Press in early 2020. Sasha is a board member of Allied Media Projects and a Steering Committee member of the Design Justice Network.
Joan Donovan
Chancey Fleet
Paul Ford
Paul Ford has been making websites and writing online since 1995 and he still loves websites in all their weirdness. He's the CEO of a digital product and design company called Postlight in NYC. He's also a writer, who won a National Magazine Award for writing an entire single issue of Businessweek called What Is Code?, and a columnist for WIRED.
Ben Grosser
(@bengrosser) Ben Grosser creates interactive experiences, machines, and systems that examine the cultural effects of software. He is an associate professor of new media in the School of Art + Design and co-founder of the Critical Technology Studies Lab at NCSA, both at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Aimi Hamraie
(@AimiHamraie) Aimi Hamraie is Assistant Professor of Medicine, Health, & Society and American Studies, and director of the Critical Design Lab, at Vanderbilt University. Hamraie is author of Building Access: Universal Design and the Politics of Disability (University of Minnesota Press, 2017) and works in the fields of critical disability studies, science and technology studies, and design history.
Malcolm Harris
(@BigMeanInternet) Malcolm Harris is the author of Kids These Days and Shit Is Fucked Up and Bullshit. He lives in Philadelphia, where he is a communist.
Caroline Haskins
(@carolineha_) Caroline Haskins is a technology reporter for BuzzFeed News where she covers surveillance, privacy, and a little bit of everything. Before that, she was a staff writer for Motherboard, Vice’s technology vertical. 
Lauren Michele Jackson
(@proseb4bros) Lauren Michele Jackson teaches in the Department of English at Northwestern University and is the author of White Negroes: When Cornrows Were in Vogue… and Other Thoughts on Cultural Appropriation. Her public essays and criticism can be found in The Atlantic, The New Yorker, The Paris Review, New York magazine’s Vulture, and The Washington Post among other places. She is currently working on an academic manuscript on vertiginous affect in African American literature, as well as a second trade book, on the back, forthcoming from Amistad Press.
Zachary Kaiser
(@ZacharyKaiser) is Assistant Professor of Graphic Design and Experience Architecture at Michigan State University. His current body of research questions the ideologies embedded in the design of technological products and services with which we interact and the impact of these ideologies on human intersubjectivity.
Taylor Lorenz
(@TaylorLorenz) Taylor Lorenz is a technology reporter at The New York Times where she covers internet culture and online creators. She was previously a technology reporter at The Atlantic and The Daily Beast. Her work has appeared in Fast Company, BuzzFeed, and many other outlets. She is based in Brooklyn, NY.
Edward Ongweso
(@bigblackjacobin) Edward is a tech and labor journalist at Motherboard, Vice’s technology section. He covers the hellworlds of tech VCs, surveillance tech, “platforms”, and gig work.
Kelly Pendergrast
(@k_pendergrast) Kelly Pendergrast a writer, researcher and media artist. She works with Antistatic on issues of technology and environmental justice, and writes about visual culture, labor, and digital capitalism for Real Life and other outlets.
Justin Roczniak
(@donoteat02) (donoteat1 on YouTube) produces videos which explain urban planning and how our built environment came to be, with visualizations using the city-building game Cities: Skylines. He is also the co-host of the Well There's Your Problem podcast. He studied civil engineering at Drexel University.
Kate Wagner
(@mcmansionhell) Kate Wagner is an architecture and cultural critic. She is a columnist at The New Republic, and Curbed, and a contributing editor at The Baffler. Kate is the creator of the viral blog McMansion Hell, which uses America's most infamous houses to make cultural commentary and educate about architecture.


Priya Prabhakar
(@priyavprabhakar) Priya Prabhakar is from Chennai, India, and currently works as a tenant organizer in Oakland, California. Her research explores the political economy of biometric surveillance in India, with other focuses on anti-imperialism, labor struggle, film, and the politics of visual theory and design.
Megan Ward and Rachel Rothenberg
(@mtrebez) Rachel Rothenberg is an anthropologist who studies the social foundations of extremism. Her current research studies rhetorics of right-wing violence amongst middle-class women in India. Megan Ward researches with the UW IPI Cybersecurity Fellows and Global Research Group. Her research concerns US Mexico border security, expertise, vigilantism, and online disinformation.
Anushah Hossain
Anushah is a PhD candidate at UC Berkeley, researching the intertwining histories of the internet, open source software, and nationalism in South Asia.
Jimil Ataman
(@jimil_ataman) Jimil Ataman is a joint-degree PhD student at the University of Pennsylvania studying Education & Cultural Anthropology. Her work explores how individuals learn about and perform micropolitical resistance practices using new media technologies.
Adam Willems
(@functionaladam) Adam Willems studies religion and economy at Union Theological Seminary. They write Divine Innovation, a newsletter on the spiritual world of technology.
Nitin K. Ahuja
(@nitinkahuja) Nitin K. Ahuja is an Assistant Professor of Clinical Medicine in the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology at the University of Pennsylvania. His primary clinical interest is in motility and functional disorders of the gastrointestinal tract. His secondary research interests are in the history, literature, and culture of medicine.
Rob Arcand
(@robarcand) Rob Arcand is a writer, editor, and web developer based in Brooklyn. His work focuses on the relationship between digital platforms and the arts, and he’s published work with SPIN, Pitchfork, Vice, The Nation, and elsewhere. He recently completed an M.A. in Computational Media, Arts, and Cultures at Duke University.
Ingrid Asplund
Ingrid Asplund received her BA in history of art from Bryn Mawr College in 2014. Ingrid is at UCSD to study contemporary art, especially installations employing light, fiber art, and other experimental media. She enjoys volunteering as a doula, beekeeping, writing about faith and feminism, and experimenting with lipstick.
Rachel Bergmann
(@rachbgm) is an MA student in Communication Studies at McGill University. Her research interests include feminist science and technology studies, critical algorithm studies, and cultural histories of AI and machine learning.
Adam Boffa
(@ambinate) Adam Boffa is a writer and researcher from New Jersey. His work has appeared in publications including Longreads, the Los Angeles Review of Books, Earther, and Hyperallergic.
Joshua Breitbart
Deputy Chief Technology Officer at Mayor's Office of the Chief Technology Officer
D Burgos
(@rarerborealis) is a film programmer, dessert aficionado, and writer for Screen Slate, Bustle, and occasionally other publications. Any time outside editing is spent contemplating the void.
Ingrid Burrington
(@lifewinning) is an artist, writer, and the author of Networks of New York: An Illustrated Field Guide to Urban Internet Infrastructure. She lives on an island off the coast of America.
Elinor Carmi
(@Elinor_Carmi) Elinor Carmi is a feminist, researcher, journalist and digital rights advocate, who has been working on deviant media, internet standards, sound studies, and internet governance. Her 2nd book Media Distortions: Understanding the Power Behind Spam, Noise and Other Deviant Media will be out in early 2020 on Peter Lang.
Crystal Chokshi
(@crystalchokshi) Crystal Chokshi is a PhD candidate in Communication and Media Studies at the University of Calgary, where she is exploring the stakes of word-prediction technology and letting artificial intelligence decide what we say.
Jon Dieringer
(@screenslate) is a writer, film programmer, and media art archivist and conservator. He is the founder and editor of Screen Slate and the technical director of Electronic Arts Intermix (EAI).
Michael Donatz
is a queer activist, software engineer, and volunteer with NYC Mesh– a community-owned wireless mesh network that aims to bridge the digital divide by building community services, and providing neutral, affordable high-speed access to the internet. Michael’s work with the NYC Mesh includes building new nodes, designing mesh services, and dreaming about what community sovereignty and self expression can look like on a local network
Mel Dorizata
(@hidden_cities) Mel lives in Washington, DC, where she currently works in internet policy. Her background is in qualitative research and social theory, and her abiding love is for HCI, STS and media studies. She is particularly interested in the politics of how socio-technical systems are designed and deployed.
Brenda Dvoskin
Brenda is a doctoral candidate at Harvard Law School and a fellow at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society. Her research focuses on how platforms write their content moderation rules.
Heather Fenby
(@_cynar) Heather Fenby has choreographed and performed in dance and experimental theater pieces for 30 years. She has a parallel career as a UX strategy consultant.
Livia Foldes
(@liviatronic) Livia Foldes is a multimedia artist and designer using emerging forms and technologies to talk about infrastructure, labor, and gender. She is currently pursuing a Masters in Design & Technology at Parsons School of Design.
Erik Forman
(@_erikforman) A lifelong labor activist, Erik Forman teaches at the Harry Van Arsdale Jr. Center for Labor Studies and is pursuing a PhD in Anthropology at the CUNY Graduate Center with research focused on labor, cities, and systems change. He is Education Director for the Independent Drivers Guild (Machinists Union), the largest labor organization of platform workers in the United States, and is a co-founder of the Union Co-op Working Group at the New York City Central Labor Council.
Keli Gabinelli
is a 2017 Master's graduate of New York University's Media, Culture & Communication department. Since leaving the Big Apple, she's relocated to Santa Cruz, California where she works as a Media Activist for the watchdog organization, Media Watch.
Keli L Gabinelli
Keli is an independent scholar, community organizer, and media activist located in Santa Cruz, California. Her work focuses housing and cultural ideals of the home as they intersect with social media and surveillance technologies.
Adina Glickstein
(@haunt0l0gy) Adina Glickstein is a medium-agnostic artist and writer living in New York. They sometimes dream about relocating to Berlin, but are dissuaded by the city's reputation for poor WiFi connections.
Marianne Gunderson
(@mareinna) Marianne Gunderson is a PhD fellow in Digital Culture at the University of Bergen. Her research focuses on how machine vision is represented in speculative fiction and digital native storytelling practices.
Winston Hearn
(@suchwinston) Winston is a ferocious bookworm who takes joy in simple things like library holds becoming available and crunching leaves on the sidewalk. He is employed at Vox Media as a product manager.
Judy Heflin
(@judy_heflin) Judy Heflin is a writer, programmer, and researcher focusing on natural language generation as a practice of creative writing. She is a Master’s student in the Comparative Media Studies/Writing program at MIT and is a Research Assistant at the Trope Tank.
Eileen Holowka
(@derangedpoetess) Eileen Mary Holowka is a writer, game dev, and PhD student, currently studying feminist social media practices around chronic pain and ‘invisible’ illnesses. In 2018, she created a digital narrative circuits about the difficult act of narrating sexual trauma within institutional spaces, which can be played for free online.
Sun-ha Hong
(@sunhahong) Sun-ha examines speculations and fantasies surrounding big data and smart machines. His book Technologies of Speculation: The limits of knowledge in a data-driven society (NYU Press, 2020) traces shifting standards of knowledge and certainty in the age of data-driven surveillance. Sun-ha is Assistant Professor of Communication at Simon Fraser University.
Emily Hund
(@emilyadh) Emily Hund, PhD, is a research fellow at the Center on Digital Culture and Society at the University of Pennsylvania. She studies the intersection of social media and consumer culture, wrote a dissertation on influencers, and is a former a magazine writer/editor and social media strategist.
Alif Keenan Ibrahim
(@_alifibrahim) Alif Ibrahim is a writer and artist from Indonesia. His work on art, technology and culture has recently appeared on It's Nice That and in Real Life Magazine.
Suneel Jethani
(@skjethani) Suneel Jethani is a researcher and lecturer at the University of Melbourne. His work looks at the relationship between eudemonia, datafication and the interpretative ethics of human-centric design
Kalli Retzepi
(@kallirroi) Kalli Retzepi uses technology, design and images in order to explore the politics of digital interfaces, the narrative of the user and to imagine new metaphors for the Web. She is one of the co-founders of FOREIGN OBJECTS, part of the Spring2020 Recurse Center cohort and adjunct faculty at SVA.
Dave Karpf
(@davekarpf) is an associate professor and associate director of the George Washington University School of Media & Public Affairs. He teaches and conducts research on strategic political communication in the digital age. He has written two books, but he's best-known for that one bedbug joke he made on Twitter.
Burc Kostem
Burc Kostem is a PhD candidate at McGill University, Department of Communication Studies.
Nadya Lev
Nadya is a game designer, artist, and co-founder of Aconite, a platform for immersive stories that blur the line between real life and fiction. She's currently building HoloVista, a mixed reality game dealing with themes of online identity, agency, glitches, simulacra, and performance.
Yamil Lora
is the WiFi Community Coordinator for Free Hunts Point WiFi, a local Mesh Network in the Hunts Point Section of The Bronx. Born and raised in Dominican Republic, Yamil Lora emigrated to the USA in order to pursue a career in music and technology. He studied Music Business, Theory, and Technology at Miami Dade College, Music at CCN, and obtained a BS in Music from Lehman College.
Mark Lukenbill
(@marflukebill) Mark Lukenbill is an archivist and video editor from Rochester, NY. In addition to contributing to Screen Slate, they have written for BOMB Magazine and Film Comment, programmed films for Newfest, Interference Archive and the Spectacle Theater, and are currently the data manager for the visual journalism unit Field of Vision.
Jessica Maddox
(@DrMadMaddox) Jess Maddox is an assistant professor in the Department of Journalism and Creative at the University of Alabama. She researches visual social media, internet video culture, and pop culture, and of course, you can find her dogs on Instagram at @TheMaddDogs.
Megan Magray
(@megkmag) Megan Magray is a freelance designer and writer with a background in reproductive rights. She is a cofounder and member of Agitprop, a worker cooperative providing design and communications services to the left.
Brendan Mahoney
(@brendandmahoney) Brendan Mahoney is a doctoral student of communication at the University of Pennsylvania. They're interested in the circulation of ideology on digital platforms and hope to study this topic using computational methods. In their downtime, Brendan likes to watch both the least and most obscure films possible.
Evan Malmgren
(@evanmalmgren) Evan Malmgren is a research associate at Type Media Center, member of CWA Local 1180, and freelance writer whose essays about networks, communications technology, and power have appeared in outlets including The Baffler, The Nation, Logic, Real Life, Dissent, and more.
Nina Medvedeva
(@burnacademia) Nina is a PhD student in Feminist Studies at the University of Minnesota. Her work focuses on how city residents politically mobilize to navigate Airbnb’s particular monetization of the home and displacement in Boston, Washington D.C., and San Francisco.
Joseph Meyer
(@Hypothesiss) Joseph Meyer recently earned his PhD from UMD in American Studies. His current work explores online hate and harassment movements and the ways discourse travels across platforms, evolves, and is taken up by different groups and communities.
Chris Mitchell
(@communitynets) is the Director of the Community Broadband Networks Initiative. His work focuses on telecommunications — helping communities ensure the networks upon which they depend are accountable to the community.
Kavita Ilona Nayar
Kavita Ilona Nayar is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Communication at the University of Massachusetts - Amherst, where she is completing a dissertation on digital cultures of sexual commerce, entertainment, and leisure, with a focus on the women who navigate these spaces for work and/or pleasure.
Bryn Nieboer
(@kinematografi) is the host of the podcasts Beepbeeplettuce and Generation Loss, as well as a member of the socialist streaming service Means TV. She lives in Brooklyn
Kirsty Park
(@kirstypk) Kirsty Park is a researcher at the Institute for Future Media and Journalism at Dublin City University. She is endlessly curious about the interplay between media, technology and society, particularly how they intersect with policy and politics.
Rachel Rothenberg
is an anthropologist who studies the social foundations of extremism. Her current research studies rhetorics of right-wing violence amongst middle-class women in India.
Annie Rudd
(@ruddannie) Annie Rudd is an assistant professor at the University of Calgary. Her research, which examines the ways people of the past have used photographs to communicate and imagined photographs' communicative possibilities, has recently appeared in Photography & Culture, Photographies, and Information & Culture.
Leo Shaw
(@warshawshaw) Leo Shaw is a strategist and editorial worker interested in the politics of urbanism. He works at the architecture and design studio Snøhetta and is part of the team at, a member-supported platform for connecting ideas.
Victoria Simon
(@vickiisimon) is a Professorial Lecturer in the School of Communication at American University. Simon examines the history and cultural politics of technological interfaces and software industries, drawing lines between the practices of developers, identity, disability, and democracy. She has a special focus on music and sound, and is currently working on her first book manuscript, titled From Difficulty to Delight: An Archaeology of Musical Screens.
Michelle Smirnova
(@michsmirnova) Associate Professor of Sociology and Race, Ethnicity, and Gender Studies at the University of Missouri in Kansas City.
Andrew Smith
(@Andrew50Smith) A practicing attorney, Andrew has studied the intersection of criminal justice and artificial intelligence, technology, and forensic investigations. As a staff editor on the Duke Law and Technology Journal, he was able to delve into the inexorable impact modern technology is having on our system of justice.
Sonja Solomun
(@SonjaSolomun) Sonja Solomun is the Research Director of the Centre for Media, Technology and Democracy at McGill University and a co-founder of the Coalition for Critical Technology. She is currently completing her PhD in the Department of Communication Studies at McGill. Sonja works on the histories and politics of platforms and the social implications of AI.
Danny Spitzberg
(@daspitzberg) Danny Spitzberg is a user researcher and sociologist based in Oakland, California. He is writing a book about membership structures.
Emily Stainkamp
(@raym0ndwilliams) Emily Stainkamp is a PhD candidate in Journalism and Media Studies at Rutgers University. Her work focuses on social media and subjectivity.
Ed Summers
(@edsu) Ed is a software developer at the Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities and is a PhD candidate in the College of Information Studies at the University of Maryland. He is interested in how the web functions as an archive, and particularly how social media and collective memory intersect.
Neal Swisher
(@nealswisher) Neal is a PhD Candidate in VCU’s Media, Art & Text program (graduation Spring 2020), and the Director of Instructional and Media Services at University of Pennsylvania Law School. His dissertation, Internalizing Data Collection: Personal Analytics as an Investigation of the Self, analyzes “self” in fitness-tracking and Quantified Self discourse.
Troy Walcott
A 20+ year employee and union Shop Steward of Time Warner/Spectrum, Troy Walcott is one of 1800 members of IBEW Local #3 who have been on strike against the company since 2017. He is also a member of a group of strikers currently looking to bring a publicly-owned broadband option to New York City. Troy is co-host of a new Television series called The New Labor Movement Show focused on not only the Spectrum Strike, but all local law, labor, and politics.
Xiaowei Wang
Megan Aleah Ward
(@mtrebez) researches with the UW IPI Cybersecurity Fellows and Global Research Group. Her research concerns US Mexico border security, expertise, vigilantism, and online disinformation.
Jenny Zhang
(@phirephoenix) Jenny Zhang is a software developer and writer interested in tech policy, digital rights, the attention economy, media studies, and social justice. When not working as a staff engineer at Mozilla, I read a lot of speculative fiction, drink too much coffee, and doomscroll.

committee members

Nathan Jurgenson
Co-Founder and Co-Chair
(@nathanjurgenson) is a social media theorist, Editor in Chief of Real Life magazine, co-founder of Cyborgology, and researcher at Snapchat.
David A. Banks
(@da_banks) David A. Banks is a visiting assistant professor of geography & planning at the University at Albany, SUNY. He regularly contributes to Real Life under his "Building to Code" column where he writes about how we live among cities and each other. He is an editor for Cyborgology and a co-host of the Ironweeds podcast.
PJ Sage
(@peejsage) teaches Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies and is writing a dissertation on the professional cam models' labor and intimacy with clients. He is co-host of the Peepshow Podcast, an associate editor at QueerPGH, an XBIZ nominated adult clip producer.
Jeremy Antley
(@jsantley) has a PhD in Russian History, but spends most of his time writing about board games and their use of historical thinking in design. His work can be found at First Person Scholar, Real Life, and The New Inquiry.
Alexis Anais Avedisian
(@holyurl) is the current Communications Manager of NYC Media Lab, a public-private partnership launched by the NYCEDC, Columbia University and New York University. Her writing interests include advertising, commodity feminism and the attention economy.
Whitney Erin Boesel
(@weboesel) Whitney Erin Boesel is an independent researcher and freelance editor whose work focuses primarily on the sociology of health, medicine, and technology. Her writing has appeared in TIME, The New Inquiry, Cyborgology, and Huffington Post; she is also the Production Manager for Theorizing the Web Presents.
Millie Christie-Dervaux
(@dervomatic) is a writer, photographer and editor based in New York. She likes to write about looking, being seen and what it means to make "art."
Jenny L. Davis
(@Jenny_L_Davis) is on faculty in the School of Sociology at the Australian National University and co-editor of the Cyborgology blog. She works at the intersection of new technologies and social psychology.
Johnathan Flowers
(@shengokai) is a Visiting Assistant Professor in the Department of Philosophy at Worcester State University. His research focuses on the affective ground of experience and embodiment through American Pragmatism, Phenomenology and East-Asian Philosophy. He also focuses on Pragmatist and cross-cultural approaches to machine intelligence, consciousness, and science and technology studies broadly.
Britney Gil
(@_britneygil) is an audiobook producer, co-host of the podcast Ironweeds, and producer for the Audio Edition of Real Life Magazine. Her writing has appeared in Real Life, Refinery 29, Cyborgology, and The New Inquiry.
Rob Horning
(@robhorning) is an editor of Real Life magazine.
Imp Kerr
Creative Director
is a Swedish-French artist living in New York City.
Tanya Lokot
(@tanyalokot) is an Assistant Professor at the School of Communications, Dublin City University. Her research and writing focus on the interplay between digital media and civic actors in the context of augmented protest. She also writes about internet freedom, censorship and internet governance in Ukraine and Russia.
Stephanie Monohan
(@shdwbxng) Stephanie Monohan is writer, illustrator, and culture researcher for MTV. She is currently pursuing a masters in Media, Culture, and Communication at NYU Steinhardt. Her work focuses on the technology, film, horror, and capitalism. She has written for Real Life, Screen Slate, and Bright Wall/Dark Room.
Sunny Moraine
(@dynamicsymmetry) is a writer and podcaster whose work has appeared in places like, Clarksworld, and Lightspeed; their fiction collection Singing With All My Skin and Bone is available from Undertown Publications. They are a doctoral candidate in sociology at the University of Maryland-College Park and will be finishing up their dissertation any day now. Seriously.
Gabi Schaffzin
(@GabiSchaffzin) is pursuing a PhD in Art History, Theory, and Criticism with an Art Practice concentration at UC San Diego. His work focuses on the designed representation of measured pain in a medical, laboratory, and consumer context, especially as it stems from a Cold War era turn towards the quantifiable and classifiable. 
Apryl Williams
(@AprylW) is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology & Anthropology at Susquehanna University. Her research focuses on race, gender, popular culture, identity, social media, and technology.