Social media scholar to deliver 33rd Parker Lecture

The United Church of Christ’s media justice ministry, the Office of Communication, Inc., is turning to one of the world’s most influential women in technology, an expert on young people’s internet habits, to deliver the keynote address at its annual telecommunications lecture in Washington, D.C.

Social media scholar, researcher and professor danah boyd, named by Fortune magazine in 2010 as “the reigning expert on how young people use the Internet,” will deliver the 33rd annual Everett C. Parker Ethics in Communication Lecture at the 2015 Parker Lecture and Breakfast, which takes place Oct. 20 at 8 a.m. at First Congregational United Church of Christ.

“danah boyd brings a different perspective on current social media trends and the future of American society than we’re used to confronting,” said Earl Williams, chair of the OC, Inc. Board of Directors. “Her thoughtful insights will both enlighten and challenge our audience.”

Boyd describes herself as “both an activist and a scholar” whose “research examines the intersection between technology and society.” She has earned degrees from Brown, MIT and UC Berkeley, and is a visiting professor at New York University and a faculty affiliate at Harvard. For more than a decade, her research has focused on how young people use social media as part of their everyday practices. She documented her findings in two books: “Hanging Out, Messing Around, and Geeking Out: Kids Living and Learning with New Media” (2009) and “It’s Complicated: The Social Lives of Networked Teens” (2014).

The Everett C. Parker Ethics in Telecommunications Lecture was created to recognize the Rev. Dr. Everett C. Parker, founder of OC, Inc., and his pioneering work as an advocate for the public’s rights in broadcasting. The event is the only lecture in the country to examine telecommunications in the digital age from an ethical perspective. Past speakers have included network presidents, Congressional leaders, and FCC chairs and commissioners, as well as academics, cable and telephone executives, and journalists.

The Parker Lecture has been hosted each year since 1982 by the UCC’s Office of Communication, Inc., to recognize individuals for their impact in ethical broadcasting.

OC, Inc., the media justice arm of the UCC, was founded in 1959. Since then, OC, Inc. has worked to ensure that women, people of color, and low-income persons have equal access to ownership, production, employment, and decision making in media.

Tickets and more information about the 2015 Parker Lecture are available online.

Categories: United Church of Christ News

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