domingo, 20 de agosto de 2017

Políticas trans. Una antología de textos de"Políticas trans. Una antología de textos desde los estudios trans norteamericanos" - Pol Galofre

Políticas trans. Una antología de textos desde los estudios trans norteamericanosPolíticas trans. Una antología de textos desde los estudios trans norteamericanos by Pol Galofre
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Un libro necesario, aunque cuyo título puede resultar equívoco. No esperen encontrar en el mismo un análisis de necesidades de los colectivos trans* y políticas públicas para su resolución. Si es un compendio de análisis de las identidades trans* desde distintas ópticas políticas, y, sobre todo, debate de modo recurrente la compatiblidad de las reivindicaciones feministas con el reconocimiento de las identidades trans*. Diversos autores aportan también perspectivas históricas de las identidades trans* y la relación del fenómeno con el mundo de la asistencia sanitaria.

La compatibilidad del reconocimiento de las identidades trans* con el feminismo, contrariamente a lo mantenido por otras autoras, figura como elemento central o auxiliar en varios artículos. Muestran el equívoco de considerar las identidades trans* como una ocupación machista del feminismo, rebatiendo el argumento de no considerar a las mujeres feministas trans* como un artificio. En un paso más allá, son varios los autores que consideran el activismo trans* como una palanca final para acabar con las discriminaciones de género de todo tipo, buscando en algunos casos incluso una ruptura del binarismo hombre-mujer.

Es interesante también el debate histórico de las identidades trans*. Dejando a un lado la óptica de análisis marxista de Feinberg que lo situa en el contexto de la lucha de clases, es relevante la negación de las identidades trans* como resultado de la evolución de la tecnología médica, al englobar no sólo transexualismo sino también transgenerismo. La presencia de la disconformidad con los roles de género y la variedad de expresiones de género no sólo en otras culturas, sino incluso en la cultura occidental, son las muestras de un colectivo que ha existido desde la noche de los tiempos.

Otro aspecto que es estudiado es la visibilización frente al ocultamiento. En general, aunque es comprendido como una actitud de búsqueda de la aceptación, se realiza una crítica de la no visibilización posterior a la transición. En cierto modo, tratar de pasar como mujer u hombre en la esfera pública una vez realizada la transición, es visto como una ruptura de los principios del transgenerismo, ya que supone asumir un binarismo y una denegación de la historia propia y la existencia de cuerpos diferentes dentro de un mismo género.

Por su óptica excepcional dentro del libro, probablemente también por mi condición de hombre, me ha capturado el texto de Patrick Califa que debate el concepto de "hombría". Subrayar cómo considera en parte fracasada su búsqueda de conceptualizaciones diferentes para hombre y mujer. Las cualidades por las que ambos géneros (y los otros géneros) debían ser juzgados deberían ser los mismos. El autor confiesa en un momento dado cómo al final de la transición espera encontrar la misma persona.

Un libro para teorizar sobre las identidades trans*, pero también para analizar la relación que uno mismo tiene con el género en su más amplio sentido





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miércoles, 16 de agosto de 2017

"Trans*exualidades. Acompañamiento, factores de salud y recursos educativos Trans*exualidades. Acompañamiento, factores de salud y recursos educativos" - @platerin

Trans*exualidades. Acompañamiento, factores de salud y recursos educativosTrans*exualidades. Acompañamiento, factores de salud y recursos educativos by Raquel (Lucas) Platero
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Un libro enciclopédico sobre las identidades trans*, introduciendo un concepto que va más allá de la visión tradicional de la transexualidad como el paso de un sexo a otro a fin de adecuar en ser con el sentir. Las identidades trans* se presentan como construcciones sobre la disconformidad con el concepto de género y su relación biyectiva con las características biológicas del binarismo sexual. Sobre esta definición, se presenta la vivencia en primera persona de las personas que se identifican como trans* y quienes más directamente les rodean, sus familas.

Lucas construye un libro que resulta una guía de viaje al interior de los conceptos de sexo, identidad de género, expresión de género e identidad sexual. Es una hoja de ruta para la reflexión sobre cuatro conceptos que la normatividad nos presenta como un bloque, binarios y con blancos y negros acompasados. Sin embargo, las páginas del libro nos muestra las evidencias de las disonancias entre ellos y los grises en cada uno de ellos. También introduce la necesidad de acercarse a las identidades trans* desde una perspectiva no patologizadora, más relacionada con la conciencia personal que cada uno tiene de si mismo.

Más allá de la presentación de conceptos, Lucas presenta los retos a los que se enfrentan las personas autoidentificdas como trans* en distintos ámbitos. La vivencia infantil de la creatividad de género en los entornos educativos, su prolongación hacia el entorno afectivo y social y la integración laboral son tratados de modo profuso, permitiendo escuchar sobre la realidad a quién quiera escuchar. La transfobia como lacra social y ramificación de la intolerancia hacia la diversidad es el corolario de la aproximación del autor.

El libro quizás peca por exceso con su segunda parte, de interés tan sólo para quien tenga una aproximación a las identidades trans* con objetivo netamente formativo y de intervención social. No deja de ser material de interés, especialmente su glosario, pero quizás serían útil una edición menor sin las páginas amarillas de cuaderno de ejercicios.

Un libro imprescindible en tu biblioteca sobre asuntos sociales. Para leer tanto si las identidades trans* te son cercanas en primera personas o en tu entorno familiar o si te aproximas a ellas para entender más la realidad humana.

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miércoles, 26 de julio de 2017

Google case

The biggest fine in competition ruling history. That's the notice that Google received a couple of weeks ago. 2,4 € bn for having given its price-comparison shopping service preferential treatment in its search results over rival offerings. But there are doubts about the solidness of the rationale of the fine.

The Commission said that the company systematically manipulated its results page to promote its own Google Shopping service and push smaller rivals down its search rankings. Even it provided some figures of the outcome of Google´s strategy, It is said that "since the beginning of each abuse, Google’s comparison shopping service has increased its traffic 45-fold in the United Kingdom, 35-fold in Germany, 19-fold in France, 29-fold in the Netherlands, 17-fold in Spain and 14-fold in Italy,” 

Some eyebrows have been raised after the fine has been imposed. There is a misunderstanding how Google could be fined for e-commerce activities without a dominant position in the electronic shopping sector. But this is a misunderstanding of the Google Shopping business. Google Shopping is nothing more (and nothing less) that an kind of advertisement service, the so called Product Listing Adds. So the fine is for taking advantage of its position in the web ads market and taking the information obtained from other services (search, mail, ...) to create and advertisament formula that its rivals can not match.

But also this argument has a flaw. As the economist said, the EC has failed to prove that there is a correlation between its behaviour and the poor performance of competing comparison-shopping services after 2008. It is difficult to estabish if Google Shopping has beat its commpetitor for its own merit or due to the tight integration of Google Shoping with the rest of Google´s service. 

So apart from establishing clearly that Google has a dominant position in the search market and this may help its dominance in other markets, few new things has came with the sentence. It is no surprise that in order to discover new facts for future investigations the EC has opened a call for monitoring Google´s algorithm.

miércoles, 12 de julio de 2017

EU Gigabit Society: Upgrading policy tools

Last september, the European Commission proposed a full renewal of the Union connectivity goals. Under the umbrella of the Gigabit Society the new targets included that all European households, rural or urban, should have access to connectivity offering a download speed of at least 100 Mbps by 2025. This means a significant upgrade regarding the target set in the Digital Agenda for Europe, which established that by 2020 internet speeds of 30 Mbps or above should be availaible for all European citizens.

For the purpose of achieving the connectivity goals of the Gigabit Society, the European Commission started the review of the European telecommunications legal framework. The proposed European Electronic Communications Code is supposed to include the adequate legal measures to boost the investments needed for this objective. But beyond the legal framework, other policy instrument should be deployed.

To begin with, the European Commission estimates  that €500 billion investment over the coming decade is needed in order to achieve ultra high speed broadband connectivity. This means that some kind of public intervention will be needed. Using again the European Commission figures, the needed public investment is likely to be a €155 billion.However, the EU Guidelines for the application of state aid rules in relation to the rapid deployment of broadband networks are still waiting a renewal. 30 Mbs is still the speed reference for the definition of which areas state could intervene without distorting compentence.

But there are other policy instruments where the connectivity speed goal taken as a reference should be renewed. It is also obvious that we need to renew the indicators used to follow the European progress on digitalisation. Nenvertheless, the connectivity dimension of the Digital Economy and Society Index (DESI) still does not include the measurement of the availaibility and usage of 100 mbs connection.

So for achieving the Gigabit Society not only setting targets and creating a new legal is needed. Other policy instruments should be in place, and right now it looks that the European Union are still not thinking on it.

miércoles, 5 de julio de 2017

Bundling measures to fight digital poverty

As the digitalisation advances it is more difficult to find any activity which is not linked with ICTs in some manner. Both our leisure and job, our personal and professional life are invaded with technology, sometime in subtle ways other in obvious ones. Probably, if you are living this invasion with few disphoria is because you are digitally literate and not in risk of beign trapped by digital poverty.

Digital poverty is the inability to use IT, either due to the lack of access or due to the lack of skills. There are countries that are colectivelly sunk in digital poverty, but the concious of suffering it is bigger in advanced countries. Furthermore, the increase of your digital poverty degree increase your exclusion as digitalisation is progressing around you. For instance, moving public services online may have as a consequence that you will receve less public services you badly need, and therefore you will be more excluded.

Obviously, the first step of policy makers to fight digital poverty is creating the conditions for the development of an affordable internet access and providing with digital skills to the whole population. But taking advantage of digital opportunities sometimes required an extra investment, and this is happening more and more frecquently. This is the reason to promote by public authorities programs like the Amazon Prime discounts for people on government asistance. What is the value of an internet connection if you are not able to pay the services on top of it?

So bundling maybe also has a place in public policies. Perhaps in the fight against digital exclusion we should start to think in bundling different kind of services depending on the degree of digital exclusion of the target. And for this purpose we will also need some new kind of public-private partnerships, but that is another story.

miércoles, 28 de junio de 2017

Digital transformation of sectors (III): Energy

The transformation of the production of energy in the late 19th century was the base of what Robert J. Gordon identified as the century of US growth (1870-1970). Without it, we would have not had what we call modern life conforts, such as electric power at home or cheap transport. Therefore, the application of digital technology to the energy sector create great expectactions as it is foreseen to fuel a complete revolution y the production, distribution and consumption of energy

Digitalisation will impact the supply and demand side of the energy sector. Regarding the demand, on one hand, consumption will be affected by the general trend towards the abandonment of ownership in cars, applianaces and other greater consumers of energy. This will certainly mean the need for different manner to sell energy packaged with the use of these goods. On the other hand, the deployment of smart meters will bring more personalised models of comsumption at home

On the supply side, digitalisation brings new opportunities across all the value chain. To begin with, the creation of new partnerships for production and distribution, for example, between legacy energy companies and telcos, that will create new platforms and marketplaces for energy distribution. But also, it will implies a more decentralised model for energy production, bringing us closer to the Rifkin´s zero-marginal cost society. A change in the production model that  can boost profitability by 20 to 30 percent.

In a higher degree than other sectors, cybersecurity is the great challenge to face in order to reap the benefits of digitalisation of energy. Only in the oil and gas sector, 68% of the companies have suffered some kind of cyberattacks. The short of digital skills in the sector, jointly with the combination of legacy and new technologies and the great disruption that could cause any failure of energy networks, makes the energy sector a natural targets for cyberattacks.  

The digitalisation of energy was one of the focus of the EU Digital Day in Rome. The great benefits and risks that technology could introduce in the sector are beginning to draw the right attention.




miércoles, 21 de junio de 2017

The end of romance

There was a era when everybody loves the GAFA (Google. Amazon, Facebook, Apple) and their descendants (as Uber, AirBnB, ...). Citizens appreciated then the services provided by the so-called digital platforms, it convenience, innovation and price. Governments didn´t paid them too much attention from the regulatory perspective as they were minor players in the economy, and also they liked to establish alliances and joint initiatives with them to obtain a seal of modernity.

But suddenly, it looks that the global romance between human beings and digital platforms has ended. To begin with, think-tanks that previously worked as the resounding camera of GAFAs speech about low-prices and high-quality services, are begining to write about their danger for competitive markets. Nobody would have imagined someone making such a bold proposal as the creation of global competition authority "to enforce competition law against companies engaging in cross-border business practices that restrict competition"  in the digital economy.

On the legislative activity, new rules are closer to be approved in Europe forcing social networks to curb the publication of inappropriate content on social networks. Even the past allies within the European Union are calling for these stronger rules in this area. Furthermore, it looks that the review of net neutrality in the US will  produce a new legal framework harming for its business models

Things are not better on competition regulatory field. Past investigations are being reviewed with a new perspective and fines are imposed for abusing its overwhelming position and knowledge of market. Furthermore, the interpretation of internet laws are begining to break the tabu of "platforms=mere conduit" and they are beging to be seen as sectorial companies instead of internet companies.

We are entering a new era. The GAFAs have disrupted markets and sectors and now a disruption wave of norms and regulations are beginning to menace with the disruption of the framework conditions that have served for their growth. But the real danger is perhaps on the making: the technology that will disrupt a world based on digital intermediaries, blockchain. There´s not loved that last forever.


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