Speaker: Dr Gian Marco Campagnolo # Science, Technology and Innovation Studies, University of Edinburgh
7th Mar 2016
15:30 - 17:00
Staff Room, 6th floor, Crystal Macmillan Building (University of Edinburgh, George Square)
Technological delegation has been a central theme in history of science and technology scholarship since Langdon Winner first asked the question: “do Artifacts have politics”. Politics has been recognized even in contemporary digital infrastructures. Proponents of the idea have drawn our attention to the myriad of ways in which technological systems are transformative of their work environment. Politics here means doing more than what information infrastructures seem to be doing prima facie. But what about infrastructures that do less than what they are supposed to do? Taking stock of emerging “sociology of low expectations” literature, in this paper we respond by discussing the case of the copyright debate in UK and how it has been ‘streamlined’ so that its solution could be delegated to a digital infrastructure. Our description will exemplify a new type of infrastructural politics. By disabling the tense relations and urgent actions of the debate on copyright exceptions through shifting the site and objects of political conflict to the always already incomplete character of technological realizations, the low expectation infrastructure of the copyright hub provided the innovative project of IP framework revision with momentum.