Tuesday, June 24, 2008

"Summer In The City (3) - Media/Democracy"

OSI club is running a lecture on politics and journalism in Berlin again this summer. I am attending, whenever I find some time on a Monday evening. Christian Walther managed to invite some of the key players in political communication, people who work for television, radio, political parties, the local and federal government, newspapers and universities. The background noise which is wafting through Berlin's air is getting a single voice each week. Most important, it is getting responsible again, as every speaker is giving responses to our questions in the end. The mass communication machine consists of eleven faces this term, some of them already crossed my path before. Apart from seeing former teachers again, I also just saw the chief editor of my early morning newspaper yesterday. It is the one and only serious counter-public sphere paper that managed to enter the boxing ring of Berlin's established press and stay there for about thirty years now. The woman at the top of the flat hierarchy the others learned to accept in time told her audience why and how this has to be the way it is. To sum it up, taz is still necessary because it is still more provocative than every other middle of the road rightist or leftist mainstream paper and counterweight to the far right. Thus it is one important different perspective in the German public sphere, one that still values core journalistic ideals a little more than some others do - be they fulfilled or not. However, it was a good listen last night.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

"Summer In The City (2) - Mauerpark"

Sunny Sundays are for flea market, ice cream and relaxing inside this park (there are usually more people there, this is an old photo). It is the "Mauerpark" (translation "Wall Park") in the North-East of the City, a part named Prenzlauer Berg and I just happened to spend my last Sunday there. First as a flaneur and loving visitor of the market, later on dozing off on my blanket with a friend. Coming home, I felt just like arriving from about three weeks of holidays.

The park used to be the borderline between East and West, French and Sovjet part of Berlin - the "death strip" between the two Germanys. Nowadays we don't have any soldiers on patrol there anymore, well - except for those who want their spot at Walpurgis Night's bonfires that is.
But still, sometimes you can smell history there. The atmosphere in the old East is still somehow different from the West, and this leaves room for the assumption that some things will probably never change. Then again, maybe they don't have to ... .

Saturday, June 7, 2008

"Summer In The City (1) - Poi, Tiergarten"

When I am not attending a weekend seminar on Online Journalism and therefore have no time, no time, no time at all (like the white rabbit), I spend my spare-time practicing. And this is what it looks like these days. Still level one, but it's already great fun!