Second Meeting Minutes

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26 June 2008, 8 pm, the Morpeth Arms

Present: Jem, Marsha, Michaela, Cinzia, Corrado (later joined by Heron(?))

Chair: Jem

Minutes: Cinzia

ITEM 1 Brainstorm content/approach - we will discuss the general approach to the project and how we are going to work together on it.

Corrado: It feels like we are working on two projects: 1. editing the documentation of the Market of Ideas; 2. ANT. Let's all try and state our positions.
Co: Skepticism and Bakhtinian anxiety.
Michaela: Questioning why the ANT approach?
Marsha: What performative effects do utterances have?
Cinzia: Observing ourselves within this process of engagement.
Jem: the scope of this project is the presentation in Falmouth. The audience will be interested in the design of social networks. 2 key elements: the panel and the video. The video will be shown in the same space as the keynote speech on a big screen. Good exposure, kiosk-type presentation.
Mich: Will audience be receptive to our exploratory approach, coming from a fine art perspective?
Ma: The video can be just 1 of several iterations of the documentation, that will have other 'lives'.
Corr: We are making culture for this context, for this space.
Ci: We need to contribute to this each of us from her/his position.
We continue the discussion started on e-mail about the ethics of ANT and questions of objectivity/positioning of the observer.
Mich: from feminist ethnographic point of view, ANT is science/masculine biased. It still maintains the authority/superiority of the observer who 'authorises' the subjectivity of the observed. Is there space in the panel discussion to dissent and propose different positions?
Jem: The panel will happen in parallel with other panels/talks. Our audience will have chosen to attend from the publicity.
Ci: For me role of video is to make project based in practice and it is the catalyst that brought us together.
Corr, No it's ANT that brought us together.
Ma: Let's avoid getting stuck with 'this brought us together, therefore this is the most important thing'. Let's produce multiple documents that show different positions including CP's position. This project has ALSO been galvanised by the resources we have available through CP and by Marsha and Jem's research interests.
Corr: I'll be happy to be there and not present. Someone else can summarise my position better than me. GENERAL DISAPPROVAL! And re-iteration of the 'terms of engagement'.
Ma: Multiple perspective will be an exciting way of thinking IN the situation.
Mich: How can we make this legible and useful to the audience? General thought seems to be that we all have to inhabit our separate positions and move towards one objective, under the direction of Jem's chairing of the panel.
Marsha sees 2 individuated utterances linked by the tension between something we produce together and our different readings of this collective utterance, then problematise this in the conference. The video will be like th etrace of our braiding together of different narratives.
We discuss 'network' and 'design' - design is about representation, about conveying an image to someone else. In this case, the image of a network. This will be part of the interests of those who attend the conference.
Ci: If the starting point of this process is the editing, we must start doing some practical work, as so far we have been talking, but not making.
We have a heated discussion about collective editing and working through SwarmTV. We talk about our own respective resistances and vested interests.
Jem explains that in the future, it will be possible to edit on-line on SwarmTV, but not yet. At the moment, the process has to be an alternating of individuals removing themselves from the group, editing, then re-joining the open discussion.
We discuss the differences and similarities between different dynamics of collaboration in relation to proximity, size of the group and personalities.
We come to the conclusion (although by this stage the meeting fluctuates in and out of focus ...) that accepting the conditions of THIS collaboration has its advantages: for example, an e-mail trail is a good form of inscription. We need to be aware of the conditions and get on with it!
(Unable to stick to the schedule, we pragmatically move to)
ITEM 7 Discuss finances (specifically train fares and dates)
Marsha has booked the conference and accommodation for all of us, funded by Chelsea directly. We can still get funding from CP within th 2007-08 budget as we have some 'hangtime'.
ACTION We all need to confirm dates and times of the trains, so that Marsha can book for us and submit the receipts to CP.
ITEM 10 Schedule next meeting
We agree on Wednesday 9 July, at 8 pm, kindly invited to Marsha's. (address TBC)

N.B. An interesting comments from Herron (?) because of the different ways in which we are conducting this process, answers, questions, comments, etc, are exchanged at irregular rhythms. This complex timings creates misunderstandings, as conversations fragment, overlap and loop onto themselves. We need to take each others' utterances with a pinch of salt. Also because we don't know each other that well, and we are still learning about our different ways of communicating and operating.

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