Introduction to Cyber Law and Public Communication webinar, Jakarta-Le Havre

Good morning all and welcome to our second webinar in the series of Webconferences: Road to International Conference on Corporate and Marketing Communication (ICCOMAC), organized by the School of Communication at Catholic University of Indonesia Atma Jaya in Jakarta and Le Havre Normandie University in France.

I am Hadi Saba Ayon, PhD. in Information and Communication Sciences at the research laboratory UMR 6266 CNRS IDEES Le Havre and I will moderate the debate in this webconference with my colleague Dr. Nia Sarinastiti from the School of Communication in Atma Jaya.

Why do we talk about digital law and public communication today? The Covid-19 pandemic, which has accelerated digital transformation in almost all areas of life, shows us every day the fragility of the digital ecosystem in which we live.

Governments, organizations and individuals find themselves at the mercy of the digital giants that dominate and control multiple digital services: coding, software development, access provision, data hosting, processing, and more.

These companies, whether American (GAFAM) [Google, Amazon, Facebook, Apple et Microsoft] ou chinoises (BATX) [Baidu, Alibaba, Tencent et Xiaomi], monopolize a large part of the functions that we, digital users, need to inhabit and live in digital, described by Milad Doueihi (2011), historian of religions, philosopher and holder of the Humanum Chair, which is dedicated to digital humanism, at University of Paris Sorbonne (Paris-IV), as “virtual urbanism”, marked by hybridization, and characterized by increase and immersion.

Personalized information, which hides or on which a recommendation economy is based, is mediated by search engines, emails, communication services, social networks, shopping applications, health platforms, trade services, etc. The vast majority of its services are within the reach of digital giants.

And with digital traceability, a surveillance system is developing, threatens and harms privacy and questions the rights of individuals, organizations and even governments. In addition, it endangers our “digital life” and questions our “living together” in the information society.

Marcello Vitali-Rosati of the University of Montreal recalls that the influence of GAFAM does not depend “on digital” (as a cultural phenomenon), but on certain specific uses: those of proprietary software and hardware. He writes in his text “Being free in the digital age” (2019):

“Concretely, the scourge of which we are victims is represented by the fact that in all areas, from private life to public life through professional activity, we are encouraged to use proprietary solutions: MacOs, iOS, Windows, Word, Adobe, Facebook, Whatsapp, Skype, Gmail, Outlook (…). Our life is influenced and structured by these tools without our being able to precisely understand the principles. The affordances of platforms push us to certain practices, notifications punctuate our rhythms of life, data and document formats structure the organization of our thinking; we don’t know what happens to our data and who can access it”.

According to him, “digital” does not exist as such, but there are many different practices, uses, tools and environments, based on particular principles, and promoting varied values and consequently, leading to diverse effects. This leads us to be critical of digital.

Digital companies want to sell their products, it is their rights. But what about the role of public and private institutions?

What regulations should be put in place to organize the digital space and preserve the rights of its inhabitants?

Can we guarantee a right to digital oblivion where the user can be assured that the data that he himself has decided to remove from his publication space is not kept by the platform and it will not be used?

Can we speak about “digital manners to live together” or a transliteracy to be developed to circumvent the conditions dictated by a small group of digital companies?

Louise Merzeau (2017) from Paris 10 University recalls that a culture is never limited to a know-how, it is rooted in memory, ethics and politics.

There are many issues that occupy an important place in everyone’s life today, especially in a pandemic period when digital technology complements the role of institutions in the economic, educational, health and other fields.

To discuss them, we are pleased to welcome Dr. Bénédicte Bévière-Boyer from the Department of Law at the University of Paris 8 Vincennes – Saint-Denis in France and Dr. Yuliana Wahyuningtyas from the Department of Law at Atma Jaya, who will debate about digital law and public communication.

Thank you all for your participation, and have a nice conference.

Introduction to Communication Ethics in Public health Care Webinar, Jakarta-Le Havre, May 2021

Opening session
Road to International Conference on Corporate and Marketing Communication (ICCOMAC) 
1st webinar.

Dr. Saba Ayon:

Selamat pagi dan siang,

good morning Le Havre (France), good afternoon colleagues from Jakarta (Indonesia)

and other cities worldwide.

We are delighted to organize this webinar series and are honoured to moderate the first web conference with my esteemed colleague Dr. Nia Sarinastiti.

Before we give the floor to the speakers, allow us to express our gratitude to our French and Indonesian fellows. They invested their time and energy in this work, making it possible. We are also grateful for the efforts of Professors Eko Widodo, Dean of the Faculty of Business Administration and Communication Studies at Atma Jaya, Dr. Dorien Kartikawangi (Head of the School of communication at Atma Jaya), Dr. Nia Sarinastiti, Dr. Rosidiana Sijabat (Associate Dean at Faculty of Business Administration and Communication Studies at Atma Jaya). Last but not least, we extend our thanks to my estimated friend Professor and doctor Joël Colloc (Professor in Computer Sciences in Le Havre Normandy University).

I first meet Dr. Dorien Kartikawangi at her office at the School of communication at Atma-Jaya Catholic University in Jakarta in 2016. Back in the days, we spoke of digital culture, digital trace and the works of the French School on Trace, represented in this webinar series, by Professors Colloc aforementioned, and Béatrice Galinon-Mélénec, Emeritus Professor in information and communication Sciences at Le Havre Normandy University and founder of the Laboratory on Human Trace Unitwin Complex System Digital Campus.

Back in the days, communication ethics and public health were ordinary subjects: there was no Covid-19, and we did not feel the need to brave the health domain.

In 2020 we worked with Dorien and Nia; we discussed matters related to the pandemic and how it influenced participation. We wanted to interrogate how Covid-19 disturbed our ways of living. Furthermore, at the beginning of this year, we mapped Health technology services in Indonesia and examined how they change communication and affect individual and organizational roles and interests. It was this reflection that led us to this project on digital communication and ethics in public health.

We wanted this cooperation to cover the complexity of e-health and communication. We, therefore, split the webinars into three axes:

1. The first is about Communication ethics in public health care with Joël Colloc and doctor Yunisa Astiarani, from School of Medicine and Health Sciences in Atma Jaya Catholic University of Indonesia;

2. The second – in June – about Digital law and public communication with Dr. Bénédicte Bévière-Boyer from the faculty of Law in Paris VIII University and Dr Yuliana Siswartono of the Dept of Law at Atma Jaya Catholic University of Indonesia;

3. The third will be held in September and is about the advantages and risks of artificial intelligence in the communication of public campaigns, with Professor Galinon-Mélénec (Le Havre Normandy University) and Dr. Lukas of the Dept of Engineering, Atma Jaya Catholic University of Indonesia;

We wanted this work to be international (specifically Indonesian and French) and collaborative in its organization, contribution, and participation. Hence, we will host in each webinar two keynote speakers, one from Indonesia and the other from France, to crisscross diversified contexts and approaches.

Dr. Sarinastiti:

We hope this work will build a solid partnership between the two institutions, Atma Jaya and Le Havre Normandy University, in research and teaching. It is a path that we choose that cross the road of ICCOMAC, the International Conference on Corporate and Marketing Communication that will take place, in its 6th edition, in Atma Jaya in Jakarta in October of this year.

ICCOMAC is an interlock of the communication academician, professionals, and businesses, since it covers aspects of various industries. This year’s theme, we are focusing on basic communication: Managing Issues in Human Communication Today. It is broad, because things move fast, change fast, but we should remember, communication is about human.

To create interest, we are creating a series of webinar (as mentioned by Dr. Hadi) – and in this first webinar, we are glad to receive Pr. Colloc and doctor Yunisa Astiarani. Pr. Colloc research tries to conciliate using Big Data in epidemiological studies, autonomous systems and robots, and AI’s ethics to improve clinical decision in medicine while preserving the patient-caregiver relationship, privacy, and freewill choice of the patients. As to doctor Yunisa, she is assigned as the head of research methodology and evidence-based medicine module and member of the ethical committee in the faculty of medicine.

Dr. Saba Ayon:

This cooperative work is a set of elements where humans and technical and communicative factors cohabit and exchange to produce dynamics, content, knowledge, and reality.

In this webinar series, we do editorialization by producing and diffusing content in digital environments. Nevertheless, it is not just that. Editorialization, as Marcello Vitali-Rosati (2016) explains, refers to “how tools, emerging practices, and the structures determined by the tools engender a different relationship to the content itself”. Thus, we are willing to do collective forms of explaining the reality of social and cultural practices and manners that lead us to understand and organize our world.

Welcome to this event, ours, and yours, and have a great exchange.

Thank you, Terima kasih.

lnventive traces to reinvent our participation in the new normal

This paper was presented in the 8th Annual Conference ANPOR-APCA 2020 on the second of December 2020. The Webinar is organized by the Asian Network for Public Opinion Research (ANPOR) and the
Asia-Pacific Communication Alliance (APCA) in Thailand.

Good afternoon fellow lecturers and participants,

My name is Hadi Saba Ayon, and I am a researcher in information and communication sciences from the University of Le Havre Normandie in France. My work focuses on interpersonal communication, digital culture, disability and mental health.

I am delighted to be with you today. I wish to thank Professor Jantima Kheokao, The Asian Network for Public Opinion Research and The Asia-Pacific Communication Alliance for inviting me to this event.

We question in our presentation today the meaning of participation during the Covid-19 pandemic, in a highly digitalised society, advancing with incredible speed towards a digital transformation. We also question the role that digital memories can play in making the participatory process efficient by analysing the notion of participation from different perspectives and fields.

Our world changed significantly in a matter of months. Our body language and facial expressions are harder to read and comprehend. Just as health, our interpersonal communication is another victim of this pandemic. So, what happens to participatory culture now?

Human beings cannot be defined outside of their interaction with each other and the outside world. As put by the Palo Alto school in the ’50s, one cannot NOT communicate, because our bodies send and receive information every second. George Herbert Mead and Erving Goffman who studied social interaction for the Chicago School showed that meanings derive from social interaction and are modified through definition and interpretation.

If the pandemic shows us anything new today, it is how we leave traces in every move we make.

Dominique Cardon defines the digital culture as the sum of the consequences of computing techniques on our societies, reconstituted and redesigned by traces. This said, a stand-alone trace does not have a meaning. Only when gathered with other traces and combined in a context, it can be calculated, analysed and becomes significant.

Béatrice Galinon-Mélénec, the founder of the “Human Trace” concept, sees the human being as “a producer of traces and a product of traces operating in a constant feedback loop that becomes a system”, all at once.

Put together; these theories gain tremendous importance during the current pandemic: we are surrounded today with digital inscriptions, traces of our activities on the Internet, and on related software and services. We form today an incredible collection of traces: we use the Internet to work from home. We buy online and call online transportation services. We do it all to avoid physical interaction. Our society moved from a “conversation of gestures”, to “online social scores”.

Participation as an accomplishment of life habits

In 2011, we started studying social participation in disabled persons in Le Havre – France, focusing on people with schizophrenia. This work led us to the “Human Development Model – Disability Creation Process” (HDM-DCP), a conceptual model developed by Quebec researchers in 1998, and later in 2010 and 2018. The model aims at documenting the causes and consequences of the disease, trauma, and other effects on integrity and the development of the person. According to the Quebecker model, a social participation situation refers to: “The total accomplishment of life habits, resulting from the interaction between personal (impairments, disabilities and other personal characteristics) and environmental factors (facilitators and obstacles)”.

Today, the acceleration of digital transformation caused by pandemic brings us back to the concept of calculated identity, first introduced by researchers Fanny Georges and Louise Merzeau. However, it is not easy to measure the accomplishment of daily tasks and subsequently, the level of social participation, unless we see digital as several tools where traces are left. In that sense, our activities in the digital ecosystem are not just a social score. They are a part of a digital habitat-a milieu- that we construct permanently to live in.

Milad Doueihi adds that the digital is also a humanism, in the sense that it modifies our relationship to texts, to the institutional supports built in the 19th century (university disciplines, copyright, intellectual property) and to politics in its democratic dimension because it is collaborative. His view on participatory culture is shared by Henry Jenkins (2015).

Participation as a part of shared practice and culture

According to Jenkins, a participatory culture describes “what are sometimes very ordinary aspects of our lives in the digital age. A participatory culture is one which embraces the values of diversity and democracy through every aspect of our interactions with each other – one which assumes that we are capable of making decisions, collectively and individually, and that we should have the capacity to express ourselves through a broad range of different forms and practices”.

Jenkins discusses the evaluation of our understanding of participation with the impact of digital technologies – and today, with the pandemic that affects our lives. The digital is most significant revelation of this: culture is, above all about sharing. Without sharing there can be no culture. To share is to have in common, to divide and distribute, to post, to tell, to participate.

Participation as transliteracy?

Digital gathers all types of media and allows the dynamics of back and forth between them. This is why it is considered a transmedia. Switching from one reading and writing system to another requires new skills beyond managing IT programs. They include operating forms and content of digital production and evaluation of information.

Sue Thomas defines transliteracy as “the ability to read, write and interact across a range of platforms, tools and media from signing and orality through handwriting, print, TV, radio and film, to digital social networks”. Transliteracy cannot be limited to computer-based materials and skills. It encompasses communication types across time and culture. Therefore, participation transcends the handling of technology or software and echoes the notion of “knowledge organisation” (Zacklad, 2013).

Participation for building digital memories

This dynamic between connection and sharing, participation and knowledge does not designate anything other than the very mechanism of the memory process. Memorising is always reorganising content. If memory occupies a prominent place in debates on the societal, cultural or cognitive effects of digital technology, it was only recently that the problem entered the field of information and communication sciences.

In her memory works, Louise Merzeau opposes “reinvested memory”-by individuals, social groups and communities- to a “metallic memory” described by Eni Orlandi as the memory of the machine.

Therefore, users are encouraged to build a “digital presence” by appropriating their traces, “so that the field of accessible knowledge remains an open, plural and uncertain public space”.

While exchanging information on online collaborative social networks like Twitter; on a collaborative text editor like Framapad or Framemo; users can communicate, not only on their own experience but also on the history of an event/organisation/problematic, its organisational model, the behaviours and actions of the participants, its management, its methods of communication and archiving. This work shows that public space is a space of memory, and that memory belongs to everyone.

This approach of re-appropriation has three levels:

  • The first concerns the digital competences of individuals.
  • The second is re-documentarization, which brings all the metadata needed to rebuild document sets and the traceability of its cycle. The re-appropriation of traces allows the extraction of pieces and its register in new series, making it possible to fit them into a diversity of communities, in memories built as commons.
  • The third is related to an explicit patrimonialization, in the shape of an institutional archiving of digital traces.

By focusing on what “We can do” and not just what “I can do”, participation can transit from the ability of reading and writing in the digital to the one of knowing how to program our traceability. We, therefore, must consider governance when building a digital memory.

Moving from a logic of indexing pages (Google PageRank) to a logic of indexing individuals (Facebook’s EdgeRank) and places and objects, the taxonomy of traces threatens all possibility of developing common spaces for memory and knowledge. Recreating documentary corpus open to collective contribution and memorisation, may be one of the most viable solutions to this phenomenon.

Thank you for your attention.