Chicago plays host to UDC 2018

Posted by Mitchell - May 6, 2018 (entry 730)

The Union for Democratic Communications (UDC) is a conference of media scholars, media activists, and media producers, dedicated to critical study of the media and striving to improve the media and to diversify the media in all sense of the word. The UDC conference takes place in a different city every year. I've had the good fortune to attend previous UDC conferences in Boca Raton, Florida, and in St. Louis. And this year, 2018, Chicago will play host, during the weekend of May 10th through the 12th, in a building across the street from where I produced a radio show for five years.

On a related point, I find it uncanny that this conference bears a number of parallels to a certain other conference in late 2002 that resulted in the founding of what's now Chicago Media Action.

* Both took place in a building connected to Loyola University of Chicago.
* Both had the excellent Sut Jhally as a featured speaker near the end of the conference.
* Both had longtime ally Chris Geovanis as a featured panelist.

But there are clear differences too.

* The 2002 conference was at the Loyola campus in Rogers Park The 2018 conference will be downtown.
* Sut Jhally will receive an award in 2018 and will not, so far as I know, face an opposing speech from a member of AIPAC in the interest of "equal time".
* The panel featuring Chris Geovanis won't be abruptly cancelled in the wake of her arrest. Even better, she won't be arrested at all. ;-)

If you are able to attend the UDC Chicago conference, I strongly encourage you to do so. I have always found UDC conferences worthwhile, and much to its credit the UDC strives to keep its membership affordable, to the extent that no one will be turned away for lack of funds to pay. The schedule of the conference is here, and registration is available online.

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