28 Jun #DesignJustice Report Back
I first went to my first AMC in June 2013, and in one weekend, learned how to embroider, sew my own underwear, dance, sing and how to build my own game. Admittedly, I wasn’t much of a dancer or singer at the time, but I also connected with a bunch of people from all over who did and do many forms of social justice media based organizing and skill sharing, and I learned new tools and skills to pass and build upon.
I was so inspired that in 2014 and 2015, I help co-ordinate one of the practice spaces at #AMC2014 and #AMC2015, and what an amazing experience it was both years! Teams of people from different cities work together to make the tracks, practice spaces and network gatherings (TPSNGs) at the AMC. The photo to the left is the Future Design Lab team form 2014:
This year at #AMC2016, I had the privilege of attending the Design Justice Network (DJN) Gathering, hosted on Thursday, June 16th. It was an amazing experience to connect with and discuss #design #media and #organizing with, for an around these issues as #designers. The DJN team lead us in discussions and collaborative activities to review the Principles for Design Justice, that had been collaboratively worked on by designers at #AMC2015 in the Future Design Lab.
SO what did we do at the Design Justice Network Gathering on June 16th? We discussed design for a social purpose:
How can design better support communities facing injustice? How can we foster design processes, and not just products, that reflect our movements’ values? The Design Justice Network Gathering explored these questions, built on a set of shared principles, and fostered a growing network of designers, organizers, and advocates who are committed to critical engagement with design for a social purpose.
I would encourage all designers and creators alike to get in touch and participate in any future #DesignJustice conversations, gatherings etc at the #AMC. You can sign up for information about the AMC here: https://www.alliedmedia.org/amc, and please let me know if you’d like more information about the Design Justice Network – I would be happy to connect you with the organizers! For now, take a look that their website http://designjustice.info/, and amazing Design Justice zine!
The AMC is held every Summer in Detroit, and brings in people from all walks of life, and is a collaborative laboratory of media-based organizing strategies for transforming our world. You can read the full statement HERE. The AMC sees media “as any way in which we communicate with the world, from zines to breakdancing, to designing neighborhood-based communications infrastructure…” and is “is a network of networks – social justice organizers, community technologists, transformative artists, educators, entrepreneurs, and many others — all using media in innovative ways.” For me, that’s meant meeting tons of geeky coders and designers, and jamming together at the conference, and later, keeping in touch while we all go back to our homes to do amazing media-based work for social justice. I am looking forward to #AMC2017, and what will be up next for the Design Justice Network!