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Converge Symposium addresses changing communication industry; next event Feb. 27

Alex Koumas | Feb 23, 2012

Converge Symposium addresses changing communication industry; next event Feb. 27

By Alex Koumas,

ATHENS, Ohio (Feb. 23, 2012) – Several faculty members in the Scripps College of Communication have worked together over the past six months to create the Converge Symposium, a series of talks relating to the idea of convergence in the field.

The Converge Symposium ventures into an intellectual exploration of how, in the near future, the communications industry will evolve under the influence of ever-changing telecommunications technologies.

Faculty members who sought collaboration between the five different schools within the Scripps College of Communication created the series. It is hoped the symposium will contribute to the understanding of how the different types of information delivery methods are influencing the development of technology or the evolution of regulations.

“Some schools have natural common applications, but others don’t,” said Julio Arauz, an assistant professor in the J. Warren McClure School of Information and Telecommunication Systems. “As a first step we wanted to explore and find common grounds that can lead future opportunities in teaching or research.”

The next address will take place on February 27 at 5:30 p.m. in Bentley Hall 227 when speaker Matt Kelland and will present “Truly Social Media: How Digital Media is Shaping Our Society.”

Kelland was originally a magazine journalist and editor and has been involved with online technology startups for over 20 years, focused mainly on consumer entertainment. Recently, Matt has set up Draco Felis – a company specializing in the creation of worldwide markets and new audience bases for creative people – and the digital publishing house Hukilau which aims to build a portfolio spanning various media, including multimedia and transmedia products.

The converge symposium talks were funded by the Research, Creative Activities, and Professional Development Funds from the Scripps College of Communication. All series have free admission.

“One category of the Research, Creative Activity, and Professional Development Funds is specifically targeted to support college-wide events, both to support events of the stature of the Converge series and to promote attention to current issues of shared concern, such as convergence,” explains Eric Rothenbuhler, associate dean of the Scripps College of Communication.

Rob McLaughlin, editor-in-chief and deputy publisher at Postmedia newspapers in Canada, is scheduled to speak March 1 at 7pm in Walter Hall 145. He is considered one of his country’s leading innovators in the field of factual interactive content. McLaughlin’s work has been awarded dozen of international honors including the 2011 and 2010 Webby Awards for best Online Documentary programs.

The last converge symposium talk will then be held in early May, and will be presented by Dr. Tom Lenton, a researcher at Facebook. He will be speaking about social media, friendship networks, and converging technology. Details are to be announced.

To learn more about these symposium talks, please visit