Join Our Projects via Slack!

Hi all – we are trying out using Slack to organize our projects. Check our convos there: it’s open and free! Follow the message below from Lisa!

Hello MASClab,
In an effort to organize our communication and efforts on our many projects we have set up a Slack account.
If you do not have a email, please email Lisa at and she will add you to our Slack–Masclabgroup.
There are 8 Channels (Projects) all but one are open. With Slack you can choose to “mute” channels by going to the channel settings. This means you only receive messages from those projects you are interested in. You can also add documents.
#labtalk is our general lab message center in Slack. The rest represent specific projects. Let us know if there are other projects which need a channel.
We will be organizing task request for projects, so if you are eager to get involved follow the messages and take action

MASCLab Updates and Announcements

We had an excellent meeting this week–Kyle led us through an excellent discussion of podcasting and we took our first steps toward producing our own MASCLab podcast!
You can see the introductory handout he used to guide us below. We came up with some great ideas, which we are going to build on in two weeks and take the next step in actually making it!
This upcoming week, we will be meeting in iDesign, 322 Thompson Hall for an Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality jam session with Professor Joey Lee! 
It will be at our usual time:
Wednesday October 12th from 12-1:30pm.
It’s going to be an awesome opportunity to learn about what’s going on with AR/VR technology these days, and possibly even to play with some awesome AR/VR tech!
In other news, Lisa has heroically begun the process of improving our website! One of the first steps is to update our very sad-looking “people” page. If you are involved in MASCLab or plan to continue to be soon (if you come join us in conversations or projects in person or online, you’re involved!) please fill out the following short survey Lisa designed so we can put you on our people page! We’re setting the deadline for two weeks from now and then we’ll put them all online–do it now so you don’t forget!

September 28 Meeting Notes and Updates

We will be meeting next week at our new usual time:
Wednesday, 12-130 in HM46A. 
The first half of the meeting we will be workshopping a collaborative podcast around MASCLab’s work and interests, suggested by Kyle. Please join us to do some audio thinking and making, among other things!
If you have something you’d like to address/workshop/brainstorm/get feedback on at more length this week or in upcoming weeks, and we will make sure to let people know!
We had a great meeting this week in which we laid out some initial projects MASCLab is going to be working on producing this semester, so that we can start building collaborations and making things. One of the things we wanted to make sure to do was host an online list of what people are working on, so people can propose things and also see what’s out there to get involved. SO, check out our new MASCLab Projects Page to see the projects that we talked about at this meeting. If you see something you want to be involved in, email us at this address! If you want to propose or add your project to the list, or if you just have an idea for one you want to talk about, email us about that, too! We are really focusing on making so far this semester, and we want to help support people making their media/social change ideas a reality.
You can check my sparse and cryptic meeting notes here, but the Projects Page will give a fuller version.

MASCLab Meeting Time Set!

The Media and Social Change Lab is meeting
Wednesday, September 28 from 12-130pm in HM46A. 
All are welcome and encouraged to join (dont worry if you couldn’t make it to the first meeting or are unsure if you’ll be able to make it every week)–we will be introducing ourselves and beginning to plan for the new year.
The lab is under the guidance of Professors Lalitha Vasudevan and Ioana Literat, and provides a supportive, participatory, and collaborative space for people to engage with the use of media in research, scholarship and pedagogy. We make media, engage with mediamakers in the TC community and beyond, and think and talk together about the role and potential of media as a tool in our work and in society.
Join us and consider how you might want to make/think/learn with us this year!
Email or visit for more information.

September 14 Meeting

We got together in an unseasonably warm MASCLab room for our first meeting of the semester–we went around the circle of about 30 people and introduced ourselves, our programs, and our favorite animals. Lots of cats.

Then, Joe prompted everyone to think about the following questions:

What is media?

  • I have experience with
  • I want to learn more about
  • I would love to make

What is social change?

  • I have experience with
  • I want to learn about
  • I would love to make

People each responded on post-it notes individually, and then shared with each other in small groups. Once they had a chance to hear from each other, Joe asked everyone to collaboratively answer the question: What is your hope for MASCLab this year?–but multimodally–with modes other than the spoken or written word.

Here is what people came up with:

Group 1 shares a post they found through newsfeed of a side by side magazine cover of a “girls life” magazine, trying to illustrate the power of media over perception and identity. Talking about the power of language – edited messages.

Want to think about how we can engage with media around election–

Group 2 –

Drawing – movement for benefits of adjunct faculty –

Brain: mental health and how we could use the internet to engage with mental health

Knowledge about online learning –

Program building a platform for career / areas of interest connection – quarter-life crisis – how to deal with types of choice.

Group 3 –

The concept of creating connections – a social connection – a creative connection making connections in peoples’ lives – media allows us to create connections beyond borders – beyond geographic limitations – arts and film festival – media festival – connecting with organizations outside in the community – community-based film project


Group 4 –

3 layers of interest – one layer is in making media together , layer two looking layers of analysis – maybe workshops talking about pioneering workshops – the idea of communication/movement — it has to go somewhere


Announcement –

This semester we are bringing in Yasmin Mistry and her participants in Foster Care Film to do an interactive screening. Help us plan how to make it as great for all participants as it can be!

We also collected everyone’s experience/things they wanted to learn more/things they wanted to make for media and social change. They are still up in the lab so we can keep them in mind:


First MASCLab Meeting of the school year!

Dear all,

Please join us in HM 46A (the basement of Horace Mann) from 3:30 to 4:30 on Wednesday, September 14th for our first meeting of the ’16-’17 school year!

Whether you are a new student or a returning member, whether you’ve been involved for years or are just coming to learn more, we look forward to seeing you there! We will be talking about media and social change, of course! and brainstorming what we can do to think, work, and make together here at Teachers College this year.

See you soon!


Join Us to Start the New Semester!

We are looking forward to seeing you all at the start of a new semester!
Please join us this
Wednesday, January 27, at 12:30pm in HM 46A
and please bring anyone you think might be interested – as usual we are doing a push at the beginning of the semester to bring in anyone in the university that might be interested.
This upcoming meeting we will be discussing and forming plans for the new semester including events, projects, and goals, the writing group from last semester will get back up to speed on our progress writing our first article as MASCLab, and we will be watching, co-brainstorming and giving feedback on a video project in development by Libby.
Join us and spread the word, and the flyer attached below!masclab flyer

Visual Ethnography Double Screening this Wednesday!

Join us this Wednesday for a ‪#‎VisualEthnography‬ Double Screening & Discussion !

Dec. 9th, 5:30-7:30pm Horace Mann 152

Double Screening of Video Ethnographies by  Tara Conley & Prof. Stanton Wortham

Professor Stanton Wortham (TC Visiting Prof. in Anthropology and Associate Dean at UPenn Graduate School of Education) will share “Adelante,” a video ethnogaphy of issues of Latin American immigration in Norristown. You can see more about his work here:…/documentary-norristowns-mexican…

Advanced CMLTD doctoral student in Tara Conley will share her video ethnography ‪#‎Brackish‬, which she recently published in collaboration with ColorLines: “Directed and produced by Tara L. Conley. Brackish follows native New Orleanian and hurricane Katrina survivor Kellen Smith on his journey from a 23-year-old aspiring professional bowler, golfer, and music producer to a 33-year-old telecommunications technician, partner to his fiancee, and father to his 9-year-old stepdaughter and newborn son. It’s a story of wading in the waters with near dwellers who have experienced rupture and being ruptured. It’s also a celebration of the lives of those who have survived and found strength in family, music, and tradition.” See more here:

#VisualEthnography Series continues this week with Prof. Stanton Wortham

Prof. Stanton Wortham is currently a Visiting Professor in the Anthropology and Education Program at Teachers College. He is on leave from his position as the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Judy & Howard Berkowitz Professor at the Graduate School of Education at the University of Pennsylvania.

He is a leading scholar on discourse analysis, narrative and identity, and research on language and culture, and more recently has engaged in study of the New Latino Diaspora through a variety of modes including ethnography and film. Prof. Wortham will join us this week for a discussion of his use of film as a mode of inquiry in his research.

Join us to learn more!

Date: Weds, November 4, 2015
Time: 12:00 – 1:00p
Location: 46A HM

MascLab Updates and Announcements!

This week kicked off our #VisualEthnographySeries! Huge thanks to advanced CMLTD doctoral student Tara Conley for sharing pieces of her video ethnography Brackish (more about this below).

As for upcoming events…..

(1) Next week is Back to the Future Day, the day on which Back to the Future Part II, the future-documentary starring Michael J Fox is set. (In the movie Marty travels from the eighties to October 21, 2015…) In honor of this historic moment we will watch the film at MASCLab and discuss what it got right/wrong and the power of media. That will be Wednesday, October 21 from 12 – 2pm in HM46A. 

(2) If you are sad that we won’t have time for our usual rich MASCLab discussion that week because we will be too busy watching fun movies, don’t fear: that same afternoon we will be hosting our first MASCLab happy hour of the year! Wednesday, October 21 from 5 – 7pm in HM46A. We will share drinks and talk about media: longtime MASCLab hero Brendan Gillett will share parts of a documentary he produced on refugee resettlement in Manchester, New Hampshire called Our Community. If you have something you’d like to share, let us know! Otherwise join us for drinks, media, and conversation:

(3) Visiting Professor from UPenn Stanton Wortham will be joining MASCLab on Wednesday, Nov. 4, 12 – 1pm to share and discuss with us about his exciting visual ethnography work in Norristown, PA! (More details on this soon–trust us, it’s an amazing opportunity.)You can find more information here.

Bring yourselves and your friends to all of the above! Spread the word!

Finally:We had a great meeting this week! You can read the notes here for a more full recap. As we mentioned, CMLTD doctoral student Tara Conley for sharing pieces of her video ethnography Brackish. Tara talked about the broad issues of visual ethnography and multimedia projects, the specifics of her work in New Orleans post-Katrina, and the many methodological and content issues that she encountered along the way. She showed us a short clip that was extremely thought provoking, and we had a fruitful discussion that you should definitely check out here !

Please “like” our public page and closed group on Facebook to stay up to date with all our upcoming events! 

See you soon!

MASCLab facebook/twitter/our blog