This Week at The Hist: 18.02.13
 

Our final week before reading week this term is one of our busiest, with our privacy debate on Wednesday, a trip to Belfast and a debate in the Stormont Assembly on Thursday, and supporting our team and individuals in the Irish Times final in Queen’s University on Friday!

 

This House Would Not Give Up on Privacy

Wednesday, 7:15pm, The GMB Chamber

 

For an incredibly long time, privacy has been a concept that many individuals have cherished and protected closely. Now, with social media and a constant attachment to the internet, individual privacy is facing its biggest challenge. Between location information, media consumption information being shared automatically by services like Spotify, and access to status updates and tweets all of the time, privacy is facing its greatest challenge yet.

 

With much of the current discussion being controlled by massive corporations, such as Facebook and Google, is the concept of privacy being changed, or even eradicated, without our realising? Is it something that we shall look back on with fondness and a tear welling up, or is this part of a new society – a society where everything is shared, and there are no limits on how much information is put out there about us?

 

Are we really comfortable with Facebook holding over 1000 pages of data on each of us? Do we want everybody knowing what’s going through our heads all the time, be it music, vision, or even our thoughts? Is an open society a better society? Come along and find out on Wednesday night!

 

Chairing the debate with be Prof Frank Bannister, Associate Professor in Information Systems, and who specialises in online privacy.

 

 

Stormont Trip and Irish Times Final!

Thursday & Friday, Stormont Assembly & Queen’s University

 

Once a year, in something vaguely resembling one of those films where a bunch of unlikely characters go on a road-trip except with fewer run-ins with the law, the Hist de-camps to Belfast. There, in addition to incurring strange feelings of nationality and displacement, we, along with a group from Queen’s, venture up to Stormont for a private tour around the most fabulous parliament building on the island.

 

Then, as can be its only reaction when the Hist finds itself looking somewhere parliamentary and impressive, we sit down and hold a debate on a motion related to Northern Ireland in the glittering surroundings of the old Senate Chamber. Yes, you too can debate in a (formerly) real life parliament chamber with all the red leather adversarial seats that implies. The debate is usually one of the finest of the year with the nature and issues of Northern Ireland brought into sharp focus – the controversial and unusual nature of the political settlement, the complex nature of nationality and identity and its unique relationship to both the UK and Ireland. This year’s motion that ‘This House Believes in a United Ireland’ will continue that tradition.

 

If you’d like to come along or to speak at the debate, email Will at procorrsec@thehist.com. The cost for the trip is €40, with £10 being returned to you on the Friday, and this includes the bus trip up and accommodation on Thursday night.

 

As well as that, the Irish Times final is conveniently scheduled to take place on Friday evening in Belfast, on the Queen’s University campus itself. With no less than four Hist speakers (and eight Trinity speakers in total!) participating in the final, we’d love to see you up in Belfast to support Cormac McGuinness & Liam O’Neill, Rian Derrig and Kate Brady!


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