Thursday, January 29, 2009

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Digitale Netzwerke

spontaner Moderator: Leonard Reinecke (l.)

Heute hat meine erste komplett selbst organisierte Abendveranstaltung für die Friedrich-Naumann-Stiftung für die Freiheit an der Hamburg Media School statt gefunden. Morgens gabs gleich noch einen Herzinfarkt: mein Moderator musste wegen seiner Grippe absagen und ich brauchte einen neuen! Nach mehrstündiger Telefoniererei konnte ich den HMS-Doktoranden Leonard Reinecke zum Glück überzeugen für Philipp Westermeyer, G+J New Media Ventures GmbH, einzuspringen. Das Event war gerettet.

Die Referenten:
Prof. Dr. Christoph Neuberger, Universität Münster, Institut für Kommunikationswissenschaft
Peter Wagner, Redakteur,
Max Fischer, Geschäftsführer,

Inhalt der Veranstaltung:
Im Rahmen der Globalisierung und der technischen Entwicklung des Web2.0 gewinnen digitale Netzwerke, sogenannte Social Communities, an Bedeutung. Kontakteknüpfen im Internet wird schneller, einfacher und vereinzelt persönlicher als in der realen Welt. Im Gegensatz zum Web1.0 kann das Internet aktiv mitgestaltet werden. Web2.0-Angebote sind beliebt, weil sie von den Nutzern so gestaltet werden können, dass sie gezielt auf ihre eigenen Interessen eingehen. Vor allem Onlinenetzwerke gewinnen immer neue Mitglieder.

Viele junge Menschen bewegen sich in mehreren virtuellen Welten: Sie kommunizieren über studiVZ und facebook mit ihren Freunden oder lernen dort neue Menschen kennen. Aber auch die Jobsuche ist über das Internet durchführbar: Portale wie Xing bieten dieMöglichkeit, ein Bewerberprofil zu erstellen, Businesskontakte zu pflegen oder diese zu generieren. Alumni-Vereine von Schulen, Universitäten und Stiftungen bemühen sich ebenfalls um den Einstieg ins virtuelle Leben. Eine Teilhabe an der Gesellschaft, die nur noch offline stattfindet, scheint zukünftig nicht mehr möglich. Wer sich jedoch in der Landschaft verschiedener Netzwerke auskennt und ihren Sinn versteht, hat die Möglichkeit, sich frei zu entscheiden, an welchem er partizipieren will.

Die Veranstaltung widmet sich Fragen wie: Welche Web2.0-Angebote gibt es? Wie viele virtuelle Kontakte sind gesund? Wächst die Bereitschaft zur Selbstentblößung? Werden Kontakte oberflächlicher, wenn sie über das Internet gepflegt werden? Wer verbirgt sich hinter den Communities? Wie wird sich die virtuelle Welt entwickeln? Welche Trends lassen sich erkennen?

Peter Wagner (r.) von

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Obama's inaugural address

summer in DC - empty in front of the Capitol

I don't know what to think of this man, but I am pretty curious to learn more... I really wish I could have been in DC yesterday to follow his address and catch the atmosphere in the world's capitol.

You can review the whole inaugural speech here.

Full Address:

My fellow citizens: I stand here today humbled by the task before us, grateful for the trust you have bestowed, mindful of the sacrifices borne by our ancestors.

I thank President Bush for his service to our nation as well as the generosity and cooperation he has shown throughout this transition.

Forty-four Americans have now taken the presidential oath.

The words have been spoken during rising tides of prosperity and the still waters of peace. Yet, every so often the oath is taken amidst gathering clouds and raging storms. At these moments, America has carried on not simply because of the skill or vision of those in high office, but because We the People have remained faithful to the ideals of our forbearers, and true to our founding documents.

So it has been. So it must be with this generation of Americans.

That we are in the midst of crisis is now well understood. Our nation is at war against a far-reaching network of violence and hatred. Our economy is badly weakened, a consequence of greed and irresponsibility on the part of some but also our collective failure to make hard choices and prepare the nation for a new age.

Homes have been lost, jobs shed, businesses shuttered. Our health care is too costly, our schools fail too many, and each day brings further evidence that the ways we use energy strengthen our adversaries and threaten our planet.

These are the indicators of crisis, subject to data and statistics. Less measurable, but no less profound, is a sapping of confidence across our land; a nagging fear that America's decline is inevitable, that the next generation must lower its sights.

Today I say to you that the challenges we face are real, they are serious and they are many. They will not be met easily or in a short span of time. But know this America: They will be met.

On this day, we gather because we have chosen hope over fear, unity of purpose over conflict and discord.

On this day, we come to proclaim an end to the petty grievances and false promises, the recriminations and worn-out dogmas that for far too long have strangled our politics.

We remain a young nation, but in the words of Scripture, the time has come to set aside childish things. The time has come to reaffirm our enduring spirit; to choose our better history; to carry forward that precious gift, that noble idea, passed on from generation to generation: the God-given promise that all are equal, all are free, and all deserve a chance to pursue their full measure of happiness.

In reaffirming the greatness of our nation, we understand that greatness is never a given. It must be earned. Our journey has never been one of shortcuts or settling for less.

It has not been the path for the faint-hearted, for those who prefer leisure over work, or seek only the pleasures of riches and fame.

Rather, it has been the risk-takers, the doers, the makers of things -- some celebrated, but more often men and women obscure in their labor -- who have carried us up the long, rugged path towards prosperity and freedom.

For us, they packed up their few worldly possessions and traveled across oceans in search of a new life. For us, they toiled in sweatshops and settled the West, endured the lash of the whip and plowed the hard earth.

For us, they fought and died in places Concord and Gettysburg; Normandy and Khe Sahn.

Time and again these men and women struggled and sacrificed and worked till their hands were raw so that we might live a better life. They saw America as bigger than the sum of our individual ambitions; greater than all the differences of birth or wealth or faction.

This is the journey we continue today. We remain the most prosperous, powerful nation on Earth. Our workers are no less productive than when this crisis began. Our minds are no less inventive, our goods and services no less needed than they were last week or last month or last year. Our capacity remains undiminished. But our time of standing pat, of protecting narrow interests and putting off unpleasant decisions -- that time has surely passed.

Starting today, we must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and begin again the work of remaking America.

For everywhere we look, there is work to be done.

The state of our economy calls for action: bold and swift. And we will act not only to create new jobs but to lay a new foundation for growth.

We will build the roads and bridges, the electric grids and digital lines that feed our commerce and bind us together.

We will restore science to its rightful place and wield technology's wonders to raise health care's quality and lower its costs.

We will harness the sun and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories. And we will transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age.

All this we can do. All this we will do.

Now, there are some who question the scale of our ambitions, who suggest that our system cannot tolerate too many big plans. Their memories are short, for they have forgotten what this country has already done, what free men and women can achieve when imagination is joined to common purpose and necessity to courage.

What the cynics fail to understand is that the ground has shifted beneath them, that the stale political arguments that have consumed us for so long, no longer apply.

The question we ask today is not whether our government is too big or too small, but whether it works, whether it helps families find jobs at a decent wage, care they can afford, a retirement that is dignified.

Where the answer is yes, we intend to move forward. Where the answer is no, programs will end.

And those of us who manage the public's dollars will be held to account, to spend wisely, reform bad habits, and do our business in the light of day, because only then can we restore the vital trust between a people and their government.

Nor is the question before us whether the market is a force for good or ill. Its power to generate wealth and expand freedom is unmatched.

But this crisis has reminded us that without a watchful eye, the market can spin out of control. The nation cannot prosper long when it favors only the prosperous.

The success of our economy has always depended not just on the size of our gross domestic product, but on the reach of our prosperity; on the ability to extend opportunity to every willing heart -- not out of charity, but because it is the surest route to our common good.

As for our common defense, we reject as false the choice between our safety and our ideals.

Our founding fathers faced with perils that we can scarcely imagine, drafted a charter to assure the rule of law and the rights of man, a charter expanded by the blood of generations.

Those ideals still light the world, and we will not give them up for expedience's sake.

And so, to all other peoples and governments who are watching today, from the grandest capitals to the small village where my father was born: know that America is a friend of each nation and every man, woman and child who seeks a future of peace and dignity, and we are ready to lead once more.

Recall that earlier generations faced down fascism and communism not just with missiles and tanks, but with the sturdy alliances and enduring convictions.

They understood that our power alone cannot protect us, nor does it entitle us to do as we please. Instead, they knew that our power grows through its prudent use. Our security emanates from the justness of our cause; the force of our example; the tempering qualities of humility and restraint.

We are the keepers of this legacy, guided by these principles once more, we can meet those new threats that demand even greater effort, even greater cooperation and understanding between nations. We'll begin to responsibly leave Iraq to its people and forge a hard- earned peace in Afghanistan.

With old friends and former foes, we'll work tirelessly to lessen the nuclear threat and roll back the specter of a warming planet.

We will not apologize for our way of life nor will we waver in its defense.

And for those who seek to advance their aims by inducing terror and slaughtering innocents, we say to you now that, "Our spirit is stronger and cannot be broken. You cannot outlast us, and we will defeat you."

For we know that our patchwork heritage is a strength, not a weakness.

We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus, and nonbelievers. We are shaped by every language and culture, drawn from every end of this Earth.

And because we have tasted the bitter swill of civil war and segregation and emerged from that dark chapter stronger and more united, we cannot help but believe that the old hatreds shall someday pass; that the lines of tribe shall soon dissolve; that as the world grows smaller, our common humanity shall reveal itself; and that America must play its role in ushering in a new era of peace.

To the Muslim world, we seek a new way forward, based on mutual interest and mutual respect.

To those leaders around the globe who seek to sow conflict or blame their society's ills on the West, know that your people will judge you on what you can build, not what you destroy.

To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history, but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist.

To the people of poor nations, we pledge to work alongside you to make your farms flourish and let clean waters flow; to nourish starved bodies and feed hungry minds.

And to those nations like ours that enjoy relative plenty, we say we can no longer afford indifference to the suffering outside our borders, nor can we consume the world's resources without regard to effect. For the world has changed, and we must change with it.

As we consider the road that unfolds before us, we remember with humble gratitude those brave Americans who, at this very hour, patrol far-off deserts and distant mountains. They have something to tell us, just as the fallen heroes who lie in Arlington whisper through the ages.

We honor them not only because they are guardians of our liberty, but because they embody the spirit of service: a willingness to find meaning in something greater than themselves.

And yet, at this moment, a moment that will define a generation, it is precisely this spirit that must inhabit us all.

For as much as government can do and must do, it is ultimately the faith and determination of the American people upon which this nation relies.

It is the kindness to take in a stranger when the levees break; the selflessness of workers who would rather cut their hours than see a friend lose their job which sees us through our darkest hours.

It is the firefighter's courage to storm a stairway filled with smoke, but also a parent's willingness to nurture a child, that finally decides our fate.

Our challenges may be new, the instruments with which we meet them may be new, but those values upon which our success depends, honesty and hard work, courage and fair play, tolerance and curiosity, loyalty and patriotism -- these things are old.

These things are true. They have been the quiet force of progress throughout our history.

What is demanded then is a return to these truths. What is required of us now is a new era of responsibility -- a recognition, on the part of every American, that we have duties to ourselves, our nation and the world, duties that we do not grudgingly accept but rather seize gladly, firm in the knowledge that there is nothing so satisfying to the spirit, so defining of our character than giving our all to a difficult task.

This is the price and the promise of citizenship.

This is the source of our confidence: the knowledge that God calls on us to shape an uncertain destiny.

This is the meaning of our liberty and our creed, why men and women and children of every race and every faith can join in celebration across this magnificent mall. And why a man whose father less than 60 years ago might not have been served at a local restaurant can now stand before you to take a most sacred oath.

So let us mark this day in remembrance of who we are and how far we have traveled.

In the year of America's birth, in the coldest of months, a small band of patriots huddled by dying campfires on the shores of an icy river.

The capital was abandoned. The enemy was advancing. The snow was stained with blood.

At a moment when the outcome of our revolution was most in doubt, the father of our nation ordered these words be read to the people:

"Let it be told to the future world that in the depth of winter, when nothing but hope and virtue could survive, that the city and the country, alarmed at one common danger, came forth to meet it."

America, in the face of our common dangers, in this winter of our hardship, let us remember these timeless words; with hope and virtue, let us brave once more the icy currents, and endure what storms may come; let it be said by our children's children that when we were tested we refused to let this journey end, that we did not turn back nor did we falter; and with eyes fixed on the horizon and God's grace upon us, we carried forth that great gift of freedom and delivered it safely to future generations.

Thank you. God bless you.

And God bless the United States of America.

Today, we visited one of Europes biggest publishing houses. Germany's most read (tabloid) newspaper BILD was full of Obama and even did without the usual naked front page girl...

pic taken by Jörg Tillmann

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Saturday, January 17, 2009

OASIS live in Hamburg - Don't look back in anger

I went to my first OASIS concert yesterday and loved it. This video of Don't look back in anger was approximately taken from the place where I was watching and dancing yesterday.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Monday, January 05, 2009

Thursday, January 01, 2009

2008 - a review

January 2008
The year did not start too well. I caught a bad flu and my grandma broke her hip. Later that month, I went hunting with a close friend for my application coverage for the Deutsche Journalistenschule in Munich. In the end, it did not work out but I had fun being out door with Claus and learning a lot about nature and animals. I also had a great weekend with some Naumann fellows in Berlin...

crazy night out in Berlin with Jule and Alex


For the first time I went to Cologne to celebrate Carnival with my cousin Anja. My mum designed me a Little red riding hood costume. Besides, I went to Sheffield to visit and fetch my lil sis Nina from her too short Erasmus experience.

The Hamburg Media School offered me to take my MBA there. Back in Münster, I handed in my final thesis of my degree and stepped into another time stealing experience...

the Hamburg Media School


I went to Potsdam to welcome the new Naumann fellows - a task that I totally enjoyed for the last time. This year, the Naumann ball was in Bamberg, where I reunited with the incredible Johanna and had a good time with the incredible Lara.

the incredible Markus - not to be forgotten


Quite spontaneously I went to celebrate the beginning of May with Anja and her boyfriend in Cologne and Bonn. Some good friends, like Matze, came to see me on my last days in Münster and I spent some sunny days at Münster's harbour with my new, almost American friend Sebastian. I went to Berlin to finally get my visa - just in time. The BusinessContactsMünster fare was one of the highlights at work with my amiable colleagues. The Symposium Oeconomicum Muenster took place on my birthday. Nevertheless, I spent all day there, surrounded by many friends, trying myself as a movie star. On May, 21st, I finished my degree with a really good final oral exam and partied all night at the Wiwi Cup 2008. I moved out of my flat and left for 2 1/2 crazy months in Washington DC - to reunite with my Spanish friends Raquel and Maria, make more friends for life and intern at the Representative of German Industry and Trade.

my farewell party

Though work was neither challenging nor comforting, I soon started to like my life in the world's capital. There is so much there you can occupy yourself with: Georgetown, Adams Morgan, U Street area, a lot of sights, memorials and the zoo, attending events from unis and think tanks, enjoying the sun at the pool, travelling the east coast... Besides, the Euro Cup was a kind of big thing in the US, too, and Germany did quite well. I met Condoleezza Rice, toured the White House twice (East Wing and West Wing), and went to the farewell party of the Spanish Ambassador...

an alcoholic calumet with mi chicas espanolas after a deserved Spanish victory


Time flew by in DC. Some of my new friends like Alicia already left DC and I hated to say goodbye. After celebrating a funny but rainy 4th of July, I went on a crazy road trip to Ocean City with some friends and discovered American ignorance "we can fake European IDs - 'cause WE have the technology..." Getting the injection I needed in July was another nerve-racking adventure but with a lot of international support I finally succeeded, and yet, the American Security Measures seem not what they claim to be... One of the highlights of my summer was the weekend in NY. Wow, I loved that city. Its only half as stressful as you expect it to be and amazingly beautiful.

walking through Manhattan


The trip to Colonial Beach was definitely worth being filmed. Flo, Rakel, Maria, Cindy and me spent the most hilarious day (and nite) somewhere in Virginia - totally lost looking for blue dogs and white elephants. I was counting my days in DC feeling sad for leaving my friends, but a little bit happy for leaving the depressing and absurd atmosphere at work. During a stay in Boston I debated on whether I prefer Harvard or the MIT - its def the MIT thanks to our wonderful tour guide Daniel who loves to be quoted in my blog. I went to my first baseball game which I surprisingly enjoyed but could not watch it till the end 'cause all the others wanted to leave and we missed the first home run. On my last night, my new friends managed to give me a night to remember... at least I did not lose my eyesight.

I settled in Hamburg and got myself accustomed to my new flat - living on my own for the first time. On the 6th, I went to my first wedding: Matze and Angela married. A lot of close friends like Christoph, Anis and Jule visited me and together we discovered Germany's second largest city. Finally, school started.

a real "Maltesian" in Hamburgo

My new uni started smoothly - with math and excel classes and a lot of welcome events... I made new friends whenever the timetable allowed this. Instead of Halloween, I went to Munich to receive my scholarship certificate after four years of Friedrich-Naumann-Stiftung.

When Obama was elected US President, I was at a great party of the renowned Bucerius Law School, but I wished I could have been in DC. Exams and presentations were approaching but I still enjoyed Hamburg City night life which seemed to attract people from everywhere. Plus, my parents came to see me. On November, 19th, the Hamburg Media School celebrated its 5th birthday at a place with a great view at the harbour.

Timo, me, Mia and Conny @ the Hamburg Media School graduation party

Apart from studying day and night, I met some very interesting alumni students of my new uni. Our presentations were quite successful and motivated us to keep on surviving. My doctor finally found out what caused me losing weight: coeliac disease. A relief to finally know and being able to deal with but also a great change of my eating habits. And suddenly, it was Christmas. I enjoyed being with my family and had a great New Year's party with new and old friends.

See you all in 2009!