Concordia University

https://www.concordia.ca/content/concordia/en/artsci/english/faculty.html

Fenwick McKelvey, PhD

Assistant Professor, Communication Studies

Office: L-CJ 4415 
Communication Studies and Journalism Building,
7141 Sherbrooke W.
Phone: (514) 848-2424 ext. 8673
Email: fenwick.mckelvey@concordia.ca
Website(s): Fenwick McKelvey website

Education

Postdoc, Communication Studies, University of Washington

PhD, Communication and Culture, Ryerson University and York University

MA, Communication and Culture, Ryerson University and York University

BA, Multidisciplinary Studies (Political Science, International Development Studies and Spanish), Dalhousie University

Research interests

I study algorithmic media – the intensification of software within communication infrastructure – through cases such as advanced Internet traffic management software and political campaign management software. My approach contributes to communication studies by demonstrating the opportunities to integrate software studies into the field while raising questions about the imbrication of software and communication.

Research topics

Internet policy and governance, Network Neutrality, social media policy and politics, platform studies, digital media activism, digital political communication


Teaching activities

2017

  • COMS 225: Media Institutions and Policies, Bachelor of Arts program of the Department of Communication Studies, Concordia University
  • COMS 352: Media Policy in Canada, Bachelor of Arts program of the Department of Communication Studies, Concordia University (Overall Student Evaluation: 1.53 out of 5 with 1 meaning Excellent)
  • COMS 460: Political Communication, Bachelor of Arts program of the Department of Communication Studies, Concordia University
  • COMS 460: Political Communication, Bachelor of Arts program of the Department of Communication Studies, Concordia University (Overall Student Evaluation: 1.85 out of 5 with 1 meaning Excellent)
2016
  • COMS 225: Media Institutions and Policies, Bachelor of Arts program of the Department of Communication Studies, Concordia University (Overall Student Evaluation: 1.88 out of 5 with 1 meaning Excellent)
  • COMS 352: Media Policy in Canada, Bachelor of Arts program of the Department of Communication Studies, Concordia University (Overall Student Evaluation: 2.41 out of 5 with 1 meaning Excellent)
  • COMS 422: Perspectives on the Information Society, Bachelor of Arts program of the Department of Communication Studies, Concordia University (Overall Student Evaluation: 1.92 out of 5 with 1 meaning Excellent)
  • COMS 627: Political Economy of Communication, Masters of Arts in Media Studies Program of the Department of Communication Studies, Concordia University (Overall Student Evaluation: 1.33 out of 5 with 1 meaning Excellent)
2015
  • COMS 893 (Concordia) / FCM918G (UQAM) / COM7191 (U de M): Special Topic : Approaches to intellectual property and media piracy / Séminaire avancé en communication : propriété intellectuelle et piratage des médias, Joint Doctorate in Communication program in the Department of Communication, Concordia University
  • COMS 225: Media Institutions and Policies, Bachelor of Arts program of the Department of Communication Studies, Concordia University (Overall Student Evaluation: 1.95 out of 5 with 1 meaning Excellent)
  • COMS 642E : Special Topics in Media Studies: ARRRGH! Approaches to Media Piracy and Intellectual Property, Masters of Arts in Media Studies Program of the Department of Communication Studies, Concordia University (Overall Student Evaluation: 1.33 out of 5 with 1 meaning Excellent)
  • COMS 352: Media Policy in Canada, Bachelor of Arts program of the Department of Communication Studies, Concordia University (Overall Student Evaluation: 1.75 out of 5 with 1 meaning Excellent)
2014
  • COMS 506: Approaches to Media and Technology, Diploma of the Department of Communication Studies, Concordia University (Overall Student Evaluation: 1.71 out of 5 with 1 meaning Excellent)
  • COMS 352: Media Policy in Canada, Bachelor of Arts program of the Department of Communication Studies, Concordia University (Overall Student Evaluation: 1.95 out of 5 with 1 meaning Excellent)
2013
  • COMS 225: Media Institutions and Policies, Bachelor of Arts program of the Department of Communication Studies, Concordia University (Overall Student Evaluation: 1.32 out of 5 with 1 meaning Excellent)
  • COMS 495: Special Topics in Communications, Department of Communication, University of Washington
  • COM 407: Communication Technology and Politics, Department of Communication, University of Washington


Research topics

Research Funding

2016-2019, Fonds de recherche du Québec – Société et culture, Établissement de nouveaux professeurs-chercheurs, “Le vote programmé, ou comment la politique est devenue affaire de calcul”, $37,638, Primary Investigator

2016-2018, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada Insight Development Grant, “Publicizing the Canadian Internet”, $71,929, Primary Investigator (Dr. Light, Co-applicant, Dr. Rajabiun, collaborator)

2016-2018, Center for the Study of Democratic Citizenship Seed Grant, “One Person, One Vote? Blockchain Technologies and Experiments in Voting and Party Governance”, $6,831 Primary Investigator (Dr. Jeremy Clark, Co-applicant)

2014-2015, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada Digging into Data, “Project Arclight: Analytics for the Study of 20th Century Media”, $204,066, Internal Co-Investigator (Dr. Charles Acland and Dr. Eric Hoyt, Primary Investigators).


Selected publications

Co-authored books

Elmer, G., Langlois, G. & McKelvey, F. (2012). The Permanent Campaign: New Media, New Politics. New York: Peter Lang.

Journals

McKelvey, F. & Piebiak, J. (2016, online first). Porting the Political Campaign: The NationBuilder platform and the global flows of political technology, New Media and Society [paywalled]

McKelvey, F., Tiessen, M., & Simcoe, L. (2015). A Consensual Hallucination No More? The Internet as Simulation Machine. European Journal of Cultural Studies, 18(4-5), 577–594. [paywalled]

McKelvey, F. (2015). We Like Copies, Just Don’t Let the Others Fool You: The Paradox of The Pirate Bay. Television and New Media, 16(8), 734-750.  [copy of pre-publication version].

Beyer, J., & McKelvey, F. (2015). You Are Not Welcome Among Us: Pirates and the State. International Journal Of Communication, 9, 19.

McKelvey, F. (2011). A Programmable Platform? Drupal, Modularity, and the Future of the Web. Fibreculture, (18).

McKelvey, Fenwick. (2010). Ends and ways: The algorithmic politics of network neutrality. Global Media Journal — Canadian Edition, 3(1). 51-73.

McKelvey, F. & O’Donnell, S. (2010), Out from the Edges: Multi-site Videoconferencing as a Public Sphere in First Nations. Journal of Community Informatics. 5(2)

Langlois, G., McKelvey, F.;, Elmer, G, & Werbin, K. (2009). Mapping Commercial Web 2.0 Worlds: Towards a New Critical Ontogenesis. Fibreculture 14.

Langlois, G, Elmer, G., McKelvey, F., & Devereaux, Z. (2009). Networked Publics: the Double Articulation of Code and Politics on Facebook. Canadian Journal of Communication 34(3). pp. 415-434.

Elmer, G., Ryan, P. M., Devereaux, Z., Langlois, G., Redden, J., & McKelvey, F. (2007). Election Bloggers: Methods for Determining Political Influence. First Monday, 12(4).

Other publications

Reports

  • McKelvey, F. & DuBois, E. (2017). Computational Propaganda in Canada: The Use of Political Bots as part of Computational Propaganda Worldwide working papers, The Computational Propaganda Project.
  • McKelvey, F., & Curlew, B. (2011). Canadian Culture in an Open Internet Age. In S. Anderson & R. Yeo (Eds.), Casting and Open Net: A Leading-Edge Approach to Canada’s Digital Future (pp. 85-101). OpenMedia.ca.
  • From 2006 to 2008, I participated in three research projects. Each project published weekly reports for the public and media. The list below details the projects’ authors, dates and topics.
  • Elmer, G, Langlois, G., McKelvey, F., Prior, E., Ryan, P. M., Devereaux, Z., Curlew, B. & Werbin, K. (September to October, 2008). Code Politics: Federal Election 2008. http://www.infoscapelab.ca/federalelection2008
  • Elmer, G., Ryan, P. M., Devereaux, Z., Langlois, G., Curlew, B., & McKelvey, F. (September to October, 2007). Code Politics: Ontario Election 2007. http://www.infoscapelab.ca/ontarioelection2007.
  • Elmer, G., Ryan, P. M., Devereaux, Z., Langlois, G., Redden, J., Curlew, B., Seko, Y. McKelvey, F. (March to June, 2007). Code Politics: Party Leaders and Partisans on YouTube. http://www.infoscapelab.ca/videopolitics.
  • Elmer, G., Ryan, P. M., Devereaux, Z., Langlois, G., Redden, J., & McKelvey, F. (September to November, 2006). Code Politics: Canadian Liberal Leadership Race 2006. http://www.infoscapelab.ca/gritrace.

Editorials and public commentary


Policy Interventions

Participant in Call for comments on the Governor in Council’s request for a report on future programming distribution models (2017-359), Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission, 2017-ongoing.


Participant in Development of the Commission’s broadband funding regime (2017-112), Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission, 2017.


Participant in CRTC Interconnection Steering Committee Network Working Group, TIF 36 sub-group to “develop recommendations as to the appropriate metrics and reporting to define high-quality fixed broadband Internet access service”.May to November 2017.


Participant in Examination of differential pricing practices related to Internet data plans (2016-192), Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission, 2016-2017.


Respondent in Bell Mobility Inc. v. Klass (2016 FCA 185/ A-193-15) at the Federal Court of Appeal. Decision 20 June 2016.


Participant in Review of the Basic Service Offerings (2015-134), Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission, 2015-2016


Participant in Complaint against Bell Mobility Inc. and Quebecor Media Inc., Videotron Ltd. and Videotron G.P. alleging undue and unreasonable preference and disadvantage in regard to the billing practices for their mobile TV services Bell Mobile TV and illico.tv, Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission, 2015


Participation activities

Conference Presentations

  1. McKelvey, F. & Joseph, D. (2017). “Under Pressure: Steam and the Discoverability of Games” as part of the Indie Interfaces Conference, September 29-30, Montreal, Quebec.
  2. Rajabiun, R. & McKelvey, F. (2017). “Complementary Realities: Public Domain Internet Measurements in the Development of Canada's Universal Access Policies” as Telecommunications Policy Research Conference Annual Conference, September 8-9, Arlington, United States.
  3. McKelvey, F. (2017). “A New Kind of Network: Donald Davies and Nonsynchronous Communication” as part of the panel: Promiscuous Concepts: Histories of Forward-Looking Technology, Ideas, and Institutions. International Communication Association Annual Conference, May 24-30, San Diego, United States.
  4. McKelvey, F. (2017). “Are You Affected?” Gamers, Publics, and Network Neutrality Enforcement” as part of the panel: Paradoxes of Participation: Open Platforms, Closed Knowledge? International Communication Association Annual Conference, May 24-30, San Diego, United States.
  5. McKelvey, F. (2017). “Optimization: A Critical History” as part of the Seminar in Media and Political Theory: CAPTURE hosted the Global Emergent Media Lab, April 14-15, Montreal, Canada
  6. McKelvey, F. (2016). “Internet daemons: the algorithms controlling Internet communication” as part of the panel: Infrastructuralism and Communication Theory. Canadian Communication Association Annual Conference, May 28-31, Calgary, Canada.
  7. McKelvey, F. & Côté, M. (2016). “Facepalms and thunderclaps: Online influencers in Canadian politics” as part of the panel: Politics and Communication in the Digital Age (V). Canadian Political Science Association Annual Conference, May 31-June 2, Calgary, Canada.
  8. McKelvey, F. (2016). “Does the difference compute? Data-driven campaigning in Canada” as part of the panel: Politics and Communication in the Digital Age (II). Canadian Political Science Association Annual Conference, May 31-June 2, Calgary, Canada.
  9. McKelvey, F. (2015). “Facebooking the Internet: Internet.org and the Future of the Internet” as part of the panel: Facebook’s Futures. Association of Internet Researchers Annual Conference, October 21-24, Phoenix, United States.
  10. McKelvey, F. (2015). “Techniques of Internet Control: connecting, standardizing, mediating, securing and transmitting” as part of the panel: Speculation and Media Policy: The Work of Imagining as Policy Engagement. International Association for Media and Communication Research Annual Conference, July 11-16, Montreal, Canada.
  11. McKelvey, F. (2015). “Media Demons: Media Policy for an Era of Intelligent Networks” as part of the panel: Speculation and Media Policy: The Work of Imagining as Policy Engagement. Canadian Communication Association Annual Conference, June 3-5, Ottawa, Canada.
  12. McKelvey, F. (2015). “Synchronizing Humans and Machines: Early Computer Networks, ARPANET, and Non-synchronous Communication” as part of panel: “Crawling Horrors” in Contemporary Network Policy. Society for Cinema and Media Studies, March 25-March 29, Montreal, Canada.
  13. Beyer, J. & McKelvey, F. (2014). “Peer-to-peer, Hacktivism, and the Network to Come” as part of panel: From the Middle East to the Million Man March: The Continuing Digital Revolution. American Political Science Association, August 28-29, Washington, United States.
  14. McKelvey, F. (2014). “Media Demons: Algorithms, Routing and Internet Measurement” as part of panel: Apps, Algorithms and Platforms: Emerging Objects of Digital Journalism. Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication, August 6-9, Montréal, Canada.
  15. * McKelvey, F. & Piebiak, J. (2014). “Coding Good Technologies for Winning Campaigns: The Political Campaign Software Industry” as part of panel: Digital Campaigning and Political Organizations. International Political Science Association, July 19-24, Montréal, Canada.
  16. * McKelvey, F. & Piebiak, J. (2014). “Porting the Good Campaign: American Campaign Management Software in Canada” as part of pre-conference on Qualitative Political Communication. International Communication Association, May 22-26, Seattle, United States.
  17. McKelvey, F. (2013). “Toward a Definition of Public Internet Research: Reflections on Developing an Open Internet Measurement Platform in Canada” as part of the panel: Research, Publics and New Tools. Colloquium on Compromised Data? New paradigms in social media theory and methods, October 28-29, Toronto, Canada.
  18. McKelvey, F. (2013). Participant in panel: Revisiting Engagement in an Age of Social Media. International Conference on Social Media & Society, September 14-15, Halifax, Canada.
  19. McKelvey, F. (2013). “Buffering . . . . . . Subjectivities of temporal control on the Internet” as part of the Conditions of Premediation Preconference. International Communication Association Annual Conference, June 17, London, United Kingdom.
  20. McKelvey, F. (2013). “We Like Copies, Just Don’t Let the Others Fool You: The Pirate Bay as a Political Platform” as part of the panel: Hackers, Cyberspaces and Heterotopias: Online Publics against a Managed Web. Canadian Communication Association Annual Conference, June 5-7, Victoria, Canada.
  21. McKelvey, F. (2013). “Remembering Algorithmic Control by Reverse Engineering Internet Routing in Canada” as part of the panel: No Time to Pause: Temporalities of Digital Culture. Canadian Communication Association Annual Conference, June 5-7, Victoria, Canada.

Keynotes and Invited Talks

  1. McKelvey, F. (2018). Moderator on public panel “Is Fake News Threatning our Democracy?” Sponsored by the School of Community and Public Affairs Student Association, Sustainability Action Fund Concordia, Concordia’s Dean of Students and The Concordia Student Union on 13 February 2018.
  2. McKelvey, F. (2017). Participant on Geothink & Learn 3: Governing Artificial Intelligence Webinar organized by Geothink:Canadian Geospatial and Open Data Research Partnership on 8 December 2017.
  3. McKelvey, F. (2017). Participant on Closing Plenary as part of the Connected 150 conference on 14 October, 2017. Ottawa, Canada.
  4. McKelvey, F. (2017). Panel discussion on social media and democracy with Dr. Bernard Motulsky and Thomas Gobeil. Organized by the Junior Chamber of Commerce of Montreal and the Quartier de l’innovation on 5 October, 2016. Montreal, Quebec.
  5. McKelvey, F. (2017). “Optimization: A Critical History”. Invited talk at International Reference Centre for the Life Cycle of Products, Processes and Services (CIRAIG) on 21 September 2017, Montreal, Canada.
  6. McKelvey, F. (2017). “Internet censorship and surveillance.” Public talk on14 March 2017, John Abbott College, Montreal, Canada.
  7. McKelvey, F. (2015). “Media Daemons: Media Daemons: Internet Routing Algorithms and Network Neutrality” Keynote Talk for Brave New Worlds: The Anthropology and Sociology of Digital Cultures, 30 October 2015, Concordia University, Montreal, Canada.
  8. McKelvey, F. (2015). “Media Daemons: The Algorithms Controlling Internet Routing” Invited Talk for the Yale Information Society Project Big Data Speaker Series, 21 October 2015, Yale University, New Haven, United States.
  9. McKelvey, F. (2013). “Reverse Engineering Algorithmic Media: Reflections on the Politics and Policy Implications of Software Embedded in Communication Networks” Invited Talk for the Colloquia Series at the Department of Communication, 16 January 2013, University of Washington, Seattle, United States.

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