Artist Files Lawsuit Against The Associated Press Over Image of Obama –

Image by gunthert via Flickr

In a pre-emptive strike, the street artist Shepard Fairey filed a lawsuit on Monday against The Associated Press, asking a federal judge to declare that he is protected from copyright infringement claims in his use of a news photograph as the basis for a now ubiquitous campaign poster image of President Obama.

via Artist Files Lawsuit Against The Associated Press Over Image of Obama –

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Seth’s Blog: Solving a different problem


As usual, Seth makes a great point. The convergence happens naturally, and often there is a evolutionary aspect to the curve of adoption. Sometimes, though, there’s just no comparison. In a way, it’s surprising that we who have internet access at high speeds still have televisions and cables around today. I ask again, when will NBC take down their transmitter, and just use their routers?

If the telephone guys had set out to make something that did what the telegraph does, but better, they probably would have failed. Instead, they solved a different problem, in such an overwhelmingly useful way that they eliminated the feature set of the competition.

The list of examples is long (YouTube vs. television, web vs. newspapers, Nike vs. sneakers). Your turn.

via Seth’s Blog: Solving a different problem.

Presentation: The Interpretive Model


Google Docs presentation on the Interpretive Model, by John LeMasney

Journal Entry: Mediation Chapter 7


This chapter reminds us that mediation is more than simply staying out of court. It talks about the ways in which we individually and collectively and societally perceive conflict. We can see it as a form of war, in which there are winners, losers, and prisoners, or we can see it as opportunity, or as noted in the text, as a dance.

Notably, the concepts presented in Chapter 4 of New Directions on the Interpretive model are introduced here as well. The interpretive model shows three ways in which reality might be perceived in relation to conflict: Moral reality, in which our sense of right and wrong determine the more correct solution, Conflict Reality, in which we determine what conflict is and how it should be handled (e.g. war or dance) and Justice Reality, in which we determine what is the most just outcome, such as Solomon’s division of the baby might suggest.

Personal experiential influence:

Finally, there is a suggestion in an exercise to develop our own metaphor for mediation, which I personally found to be a very useful exercise. My metaphor was mediation as steam engine.

Pressure is building due to the combustion of conflicting sides, and without the strong structure of mediation holding the path of the energy, the engine itself could burst. The productive outcome is the work being done by the engine, though the engine itself could be used to do many different kinds of work: solving property disputes, improving work relations, devising innovative outcomes, etc. The fuel for the engine is the willingness and trust of the participants. The steam that is building could be released and scald someone, or it could continue through the strong guide of the engine and be productive. The edges of the engine are not fire, not steam, not fuel, not the work itself, but are essential for those other elements to work together to be productive.

Domenici, K., Domenici-Littlejohn, & Littlejohn, S. W. (2001). Mediation: Empowerment in Conflict Management, Second Edition (2nd ed., p. 198). Waveland Press.

Journal Entry: New Directions Chapter 4


This chapter talks about the realities that mediators and disputants bring with them into mediation, and how those realities, if not noted, can create misunderstandings in the way that the mediation progress, or lack thereof, is interpreted.

The bulk of the chapter is devoted to explaining the Interpretive Model, in which Littlejohn, Shailor, and Pearce found in their research that one’s sense of reality as it relates to conflict can be classified in many ways, but can be generally classified starting with three main groups of differences:

Moral reality, in which one’s general sense of right and wrong are defined. This can be further classified into groups such as authoritarian, republican, utilitarian and expressivist. These are more or less individualist vs. relational views, and rely more or less on liberty and freedom vs. predetermined rules and ‘scripture’.

Conflict Reality, or the ways in which one reacts and works with (or avoids) conflict. One may be more likely to see conflict as either opportunity or war, and will react to that feeling appropriately. People may also feel more or less comfortable with dealing with conflict themselves vs. having the conflict resolved for them. We can see how mediation favors and benefits those who see conflict as opportunity and resist adjudicated solutions, preferring a more relational approach.

Justice Reality, in which one’s understanding of the ways in which balance is achieved between conflicted parties. One may see justice as being served more by punishment, while another may see justice being served more by distribution of benefits, while someone else may see justice best served when ‘the whole’ is most rewarded.

The benefits of these analysis models are that we can either predict or review problems in mediation processes where unexpected results are encountered. If two disputants seem poised to find resolution, but suddenly drop backwards in progress over key statements, those statements could be investigated as different representations of reality, which could then possibly be brought more into alignment by way of reframing, restating, or other exercises in bringing about commonality between parties’ realities.

Littlejohn, S. W., Shailor, J., & Pearce, W. B. (1994). The Deep Structure of Reality in Mediation. In J. P. Folger & T. S. Jones (Eds.), New Directions in Mediation: Communication Research and Perspectives (pp. 67-83). Sage Publications, Inc.

Personal experiential influence:

I chose to focus on the Interpretive Model for my discussion presentation because it seemed interesting to me that we could specify some key ways in which we differ that might affect our handling of conflict. I think I have felt that conflict is generally inevitable and that if we care about something that we are in conflict about we have to work through the conflict in order to achieve our goals. When something is less important, we simply keep our mouths closed in order to avoid the conflict. That in fact, is my conflict reality pretty well defined. I have a personal conflict engagement continuum where I assess the level of importance of the goal, and assign to it my own level of willingness to participate in conflict about it. I had no idea anyone ever considered conflict any differently. I think myself I tend towards a conflict management perspective, in general, and would like to think that I prefer the consensus sub model, in which conflict exists as “a difference of opinion on alternate solutions, which is settled by discussion and creative problem solving” (Littlejohn, Shailor, and Pearce, 1994, p. 71). The issue that I encountered here explains quite a bit – when I ran into a conflict with someone and the outcome was very important to me, I ran towards it, and though i perceived the issue to be of great importance to the other party, they sometimes decided to simply let things be rather than to engage in the conflict in order to come to a better solution that just the status quo. The Interpretive Model explains that in our Conflict Reality, as well as possibly with other realities, we were mismatched as disputants. Perhaps they preferred a libertarian or conflict avoidance Conflict reality, and we would have to work on the conditions of the stage of the conflict before we would be able to engage it, if at all.