Module 2, Entry #3

A Line in the Sand

URL: is a site that offers a few links to narratives and a few more links to Native American resources online.   Of particular interest is A Line in the Sand.  This website discusses Indigenous sovereignty issues, cultural property form the Indigenous perspective, legal resources and stereotypes.  Reading lists for each of these topics are recommended and linked to.  Furthermore a section of this site is dedicated to indigenous literature and art.  Finally, a section lists websites and resources for tribal and governmental contacts, colleges and media.

Despite the valuable commentaries and essays features in A Line in the Sand, what I have found unique is the section Responses from Native Peoples, profiling authors and poets as well as linking to virtual libraries and an article that provides tips on evaluating the authenticity of an “American Indian website”.  I believe this section makes A Line in the Sand stand out as a valuable resource for a researcher as it provides what seems to be a unique approach in portraying issues of Indigenous peoples.

October 17, 2009   No Comments

Module 2, Entry #2

Cultural Survival


Cultural Survival is a US based organization that works with and defends the rights of indigenous communities in Asia, Africa, South America, North America, and Australia.  Of interest to any researcher, Cultural Survival’s website makes available over thirty-five years of articles on indigenous issues worldwide.  A simple article search can lead one to comprehensive information about a plethora of topics such as indigenous distance education in Canada or indigenous discrimination in Britain.  Another way to access these articles is to browse the publications’ archives.

I believe this website could be of great interest to researchers as it covers many topics regarding many indigenous communities around the world.  The website does not provide additional resources or links to other sites.  Furthermore, it does not seem the source or author of any of the articles are divulged.  For that reason I feel this site is most useful for preliminary research and mere exposure to the issues that are dealt with by indigenous communities.

October 17, 2009   No Comments

Module 2, Entry #1

Media Portrayals of Aboriginal People


The Media Awareness Network provides resources and support pertaining to media and information literacy for youth.  Sharing tips for parents and classroom activities and lesson plans for teachers, this website has an array of information about media and specific scenarios and communities.  A simple website search can lead one to a variety of articles pertaining specifically to Aboriginal experiences in regards to media.  Issues discussed include common portrayals of Aboriginal people, the effects of stereotyping on youth and the history of Aboriginal development in Canada.  Additionally to providing clear examples and explanations of these issues, each article is accompanied by web resources and recommended readings.  The shared links lead to interesting pages such as the NFB,  Aboriginal news sites and independently written articles.

I find the articles available on the website as well as the one’s recommended by the website to be excellent tools for anyone wishing to educate youth about the reality of media and the misrepresentations that are often taught as common knowledge.  Moreover the information can be of interest to any individual wishing to be exposed to this issue and begin more extensive research.

October 17, 2009   No Comments

Module 2 – Weblog Entry #1 – Bruce Spencer

The Overseeing Gaze


Technologies such as the internet have reopened the debate about intellectual property, copyright protection and cultural ownership. Weblogs, Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, YouTube are just a few of the tools available to people wishing to correspond, chat or post media on topics of interest to them. A huge increase in the commodification of culture and increased marketing has only inflamed the debate.

The first video shows what can happen to a culture when the Internet is used to promote or market tourism in a global context. The second video is an overview of just how quickly technology has changed Internet marketing over the past 10 years or so.

Adivasi, Tourism & Internet (video)

Technology Impact on Internet marketing (video)

The next video is an example of how the Internet is used to promote non-violent yet illegal activity. A vigilante demonstrates how to place copper wire on railway tracks to short circuit railway traffic lights. The idea is to train sympathizers of the cause how to disrupt railway traffic.

Friends and Allies (video)

Here are a few more examples of how the Internet is being used by indigenous people to get their message out… whatever the message may be. on employment in Thunder Bay (video)

Native American Children Raising Funds to Purchase a Native Youth Ranch (video)

October 17, 2009   No Comments

Module 2 – Weblog Entry #2 – Bruce Spencer

Nanook of the North


There has been considerable discussion in the course about the objectivity of the film, Nanook of the North, and it’s portrayal of Innu people. This 1920’s black and white film is of some historical significance if only because there’s practically no other footage around. Click on the link below to view the film Nanook of the North. (video)

Go to this site for information on the film and on Flaherty (document)

Go to this site for an Innu perspective of Nanook of the North. (website)

The Innu Nation has a couple of websites with plenty of information about their history and their culture. When I took a look at the Innu Nation site, the links were all down. Perhaps you’ll have better luck. Innu AIMUN has some good resources and their links are working.

Innu Nation – Resources (documents)

Innu AIMUN – Memorial University of Newfoundland (website)

October 17, 2009   No Comments

Module 2 – Weblog Entry #3 – Bruce Spencer

Protecting Cultural Rights


MIT WORLD Distributed Intelligence

This video on Copyright, Fair Use, and the Cultural Commons about the shift in intellectual property protection and rights from the days of Shakespeare when ownership was held in perpetuity up to present day limits. This is a long one but it gives you some great background information as well as the latest trends in copyright and fair use law. The Fair Use and Free Speech is shown in this presentation. I included a link to this documentary below.

Copyright, Fair Use, and the Cultural Commons (April 2007) (video)

Here are a couple of other related sites that you may find useful. Center for Social Studies has some teaching materials that may be useful. Keep in mind that the information is based on US best practices and US law.

Fair Use and Free Speech (video)

Code of Best Practices and Fair Use (document)

Center for Social Media (website)

October 17, 2009   No Comments

Module 2 – Weblog Entry #4 – Bruce Spencer



YouTube – D Indians Shave – by Chris Spotted Eagle

This video is based on street interviews taken in 1972 highlights some of the misconceptions Americans had about American Indigenous people. The interviewee is a native North American. You may be surprised by some of the answers he got to questions like do Indians shave, how much land do Indians own, where did scalping come from, do Indians speak a common language, how many Indians live in the Us and so on. (video)

Here are a few other videos to remind us about lack of tolerance and respect some people seem to have towards indigenous people. There are some strong messages being sent here.

• The Indians in Brazil – Who are they? (video)
• Laughing at Aboriginies? – Tough Questions to QUT Project (video)

October 17, 2009   No Comments

Module 2 – Weblog Entry #5 – Bruce Spencer

Indigenous People


Native Tube – Indigenous people –by keeper79
An audio visual presentation dedicated to the 400 million indigenous people living in the world. There are plenty of interesting pictures of indigenous people from around the world. The song that accompanies the presentation is quite enjoyable too. (video)

There are plenty of other thought provoking videos for you to watch. I would like to recommend the following…

• Long Train of Abuses part I–Part-1 (video)
• Took the Children Away–Archie-Roach (video)

October 17, 2009   No Comments

Module 2, Post 5

Land of the Secwepemc

From my fourth post on the Drum, Northern Cree, it made me look back to the Tk’emlups Indian Band’s site ( as I was looking for information on the Kamloopa Pow Wow where I had seen Northern Cree play.  Kamloops is also my home town.

Looking through the Tk’emlups site I stumbled on the Land of the Secwepemc or Land of the Shuswap site.

Created by the George Manuel Institue the Land of the Secwepemc has a tremendous amount of historical and cultural information. It includes information about territory, traditional practices, landmarks and oral history in mp3 format. One that I’ll be downloading is about the balancing rock near Savona. My dad and my brothers hiked there to see it when I was about eight. It will be interesting to hear the First Nation story about it.

The site documents legends, language, songs and dances. It also has oral telling of experience at the local residential school in Kamloops. This will certainly be a site I spend several more hours in listening to!

October 17, 2009   No Comments

Module 2, Post 4

Recording Artists: Northern Cree

I was fortunate enough a couple of summers ago to visit my home town, Kamloops, and attend that years Kamloopa Pow Wow in Tk’emlups territory (where the rivers meet). I hadn’t been since I was quite young and had forgotten the moving experience that is a pow wow. I started to look for one of the Drums (drum group) that I remembered, Northern Cree, online. Turns out they are quite famous. There are numerous recordings on youtube as well as cd’s available online.

The link I’ll include is for Honor the Eagle Feather CD by Northern Cree on the Canyon Records site which has been producing and distributing Native American music since 1951

I’ll also include a link to Northern Cree’s own site

Their music is widely available online through many retailers.

October 17, 2009   No Comments

Module 2, Post 3

After reading Indigenous Presence in the Sydney Games, by Lisa Meekson  (Chapter 6, Smith & Ward, 2000), I was curious about the Vancouver/Whistler 2010 games and Aboriginal Participation.

While I did not find sites in particular I found the following two pages from VANOC’s official site (

Aboriginal Peoples of Canada

Aboriginal Participation

The first link both invites artists and promotes the fact that there will be Aboriginal art at all venues in the 2010 Olympics.  Along with VANOC the invitation comes from a partner group, the Four Host First Nations (FHFN). VANOC states that there will be a commitment to unprecedented Aboriginal participation in the 2010 winter games.

It also speaks of commercial opportunities for Aboriginal artists,  legacy funds going to an Aboriginal youth group (Aboriginal Youth Legacy Fund, the participation of the BC Sports Hall of Fame with a Aboriginal sports gallery, and a reference to the North American Indigenous Games.

The second link speaks specifically to VANOC’s commitment to increase the level of participation of Aboriginal Peoples to beyond a ceremonial level at the Olympics. The speak of the FHFN partnerships and the desire to have Aboriginal athletes, volunteers, entrepreneurs, employees, artists, performers, spectators, and cultural ambassadors.

It would be interesting to have someone after the games analyze the level of participation prior to and after the games as did Lisa Meekison for the 2000 summer games in Sydney.


Meekison, L. (2000). Chapter 6 Indigenous Presence in the Sydney Games. In C Smith & G. Ward (Ed.), Indigenous Cultures in an Interconnected World (pp. 109-126). Vancouver, BC: UBCPress.

October 17, 2009   No Comments

Module 2, Post 2

Sponsored by CTV Globe Media, this years ImagineNative media festival focuses on Indigenous media arts from around the world. It does not limit the entries to only film, but includes new media, radio, film and video.

Along with screenings of the compelling material the festival also offers workshops, panel discussions, cultural events to help connect the artists with the media and broader  community.

The festival hopes to portray the vitality and diversity of Indigenous artists in contemporary media.

October 17, 2009   No Comments

Module 2, Post 1

In keeping with the theme of the last few weeks around media I thought to look up some media websites. The Winnipeg Aboriginal Film Festival (WAFF) aims to show the best in Aboriginal films from Canada and worldwide. It occurs each November and its mandates are to celebrate and cultivate indeginous story telling as well as to promote media as a career path for Aboriginal youth.

The organization also provides entry level workshops for new film makers and the best film from the workshops opens the festival.

The WAFF has exposed thousands of movie goers to the art of Aboriginal storytelling since 2002.

October 17, 2009   No Comments

Indigenous Portal

The Indigenous Portal is an outcome of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS . WSIS was a two-phase series, United Nations (UN) sponsored summit about information and communication. The Geneva Summit in December 2003 laid the foundations with a Declaration of Principles and a plan of action. The Tunis Summit aimed to monitor and evaluate progress on the action plan and devise an agenda that will target goals for achievement by 2015. From these events came the WSIS Declaration and Plan of Action, as well as the Declaration and Plan of Action of the Global Forum of Indigenous Peoples and the Information Society.

Together, these documents provide guidance to states, Indigenous peoples, UN agencies, non-governmental organisations, the private sector and academics interested in using new technologies to improve communications and the quality of life for Indigenous peoples around the world.

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National Centre for First Nations Governance

The National Centre for First Nations Governance (NCFNG) is an innovative service and research organization offering an important set of nation re-building services to First Nations from the Atlantic to the Pacific. NCFNG provides a bridge between traditional and contemporary governance models. Services are developed and delivered by experienced and educated Aboriginal staff.

The Centre is in the unique position of applying research through its services and learning from the work done in communities

NCFNG has a two-pronged mandate. First, it supports First Nations as they seek to implement effective self-governance and second, it assists First Nations in the further development of their day-to-day government operations. The Centre also supports First Nations in their efforts to develop their jurisdictional authorities.

NCFNG is a non-profit organization. It is governed by First Nations professionals and operates independently from the Government of Canada and our own political organizations.

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First Nations Films

Specializing in the inception, creation and distribution of hard-to-write television, video and educational programs about native people. Through our reputation for the creation of award-winning insightful and quality programs FIRST NATIONS FILMS has become a force in the Global market and continues to create works of excellence.

October 17, 2009   No Comments

First Voices Kids

This looks like an excellent website for younger students that are interested in learning about the many First Nation languages that exist in Canada.  The links are easily navigable and provide a fun way to be exposed to aboriginal languages.

October 17, 2009   No Comments

First Nations Technology Council

The First Nations Technology Council website began in order to, support the full integration of technologies to improve the quality of life for all First Nations in British Columbia.

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Indigenous Adult and Higher Learning Association

This website contains a wealth of information for both students and educators seeking to learn more about indigenous adult higher learning institutions in BC.

If you wish to find out more about the school closest to your hometown or in a certain region search our List of Institutions.

If you need help funding a post-secondary program look under the Financial Aid section to find out about Canada Student Loans or to see if you qualify for the many awards and scholarships available to First Nations students.

Not sure how a course you are currently taking at a First Nations institution will transfer to a public college or university? Then why not check the BC Transfer Guide listed in the Useful Links section.

October 17, 2009   No Comments

First Nations School Net

Keewatin Career Development Corporation (KCDC) is the Regional Management Organization for Indian and Northern Affairs Canada’s First Nations SchoolNet program for Saskatchewan and Alberta as of December 2006. We have signed a contribution agreement with Indian and Northern Affairs Canada to provide administration of the program for First Nations Schools between now and March 31, 2009. The First Nations SchoolNet Program has provided Internet connectivity assistance to First Nations schools since the late 1990s.

In order to provide better services for First Nations Schools under SchoolNet, Industry Canada in 2002 invited proposals for Regional Management Organizations to administer the program as it continues. Our organization entered that competition and have the role of Regional Management Organization for First Nations Schools in Saskatchewan and Alberta.

As of April 1, 2009 First Nations (AB) Technical Services Advisory Group – TSAG is now the Regional Management Organization for Indian and Northern Affairs Canada’s First Nations SchoolNet Program 2009/2010 for Alberta. During the month of April 2009 TSAG will be transtioning the service from Keewatin Career Development Corporation to TSAG – First Nations (AB) Technical Services Advisory Group

KCDC would like to express many thanks to all Alberta community leaders, educators, administrators with whom we have had the great opportunity to work with over the past seven years!

Our organization has a track record and experience in implementing Information and Communications Technology with First Nations and provincial schools. Through a series of projects, we have worked with schools to better their connectivity, maintain their systems, train their teachers in technology use, and deliver on-line courses. Our corporate vision is to use Information and Communications Technology to increase the educational opportunities available in First Nations and remote communities.

KCDC is a registered Saskatchewan non profit organization. Our membership is comprised of partner agencies from education and employment services in Northern Saskatchewan. Our member agencies include the northern Saskatchewan tribal councils, Meadow Lake Tribal Council and Prince Albert Grand Council. More information about all of our activities is available at our website:

Through the First Nations SchoolNet Program, we provide assistance to schools for Internet connectivity and Help Desk Services. Under our contribution agreement with Indian and Northern Affairs, signing of a Memorandum of Agreement with the participating schools is required. The Help Desk service was implemented to provide assistance to our First Nations schools with troubleshooting local area networks and connectivity problems. A toll free number had been assigned as 1-866-766-7373 to access technical assistance.

Again, FNS would like to express thanks to all community leaders and educators with whom we have had the great opportunity to work over the past years. Your dedication and commitment to the education of First Nations children is evident, and we must strive to help the government departments understand the importance of adequate support for schools!

October 17, 2009   No Comments