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Research Conference is Thursday

The BGSU community is invited to attend the all-campus research and creative activity conference Thursday (Nov. 5), showcasing the excellence in scholarly and creative endeavors of its faculty and graduate and undergraduate students from all disciplines and colleges. The conference will be held from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Bowen-Thompson Student Union, primarily in the Lenhart Grand Ballroom with additional sessions in other rooms.

Featured will be poster presentations of current work and talks on BGSU’s centers of excellence, the federal appropriations process, and undergraduate research, plus a reception and presentation of awards for the best student posters.

The noon luncheon (by reservation only) will include a talk by Dr. Gene Poor, entrepreneur in residence at the College of Business Administration. Also at the luncheon, the Olscamp Research and Outstanding Young Scholar awards will be presented.

To make lunch reservations, call 2-2481 or email

A full schedule of events is posted at the conference Web site:

The conference is sponsored by the Office of the Vice Provost for Research and hosted by the Office of Sponsored Programs and Research.

Explore ‘The Voice as Musical Instrument’

Johan Sundberg

Of all the means of producing music, the human voice is perhaps the most flexible, according to Dr. Johan Sundberg of Sweden. A well-known researcher and specialist in voice acoustics, Sundberg will speak on “The Voice as Musical Instrument” as part of a special workshop Tuesday (Nov. 3) hosted by the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders.

His talk will begin at 11:30 a.m. in Bryan Recital Hall of the Moore Musical Arts Center. Sundberg’s visit is sponsored by the College of Health and Human Services and the College of Musical Arts.

Unlike that of a musical instrument, sound produced by the voice can be continuously varied in loudness, pitch and timbre thanks to physiology. Sundberg will explain how singers use these properties for musical expressivity and vocal economy.

A visiting professor at the University of London and the University of Freiburg in Germany, Sundberg conducts research concerning acoustical aspects of music in general and of the human voice in particular. He has written The Science of Musical Sounds and The Science of the Singing Voice, and has extensive experience as a singer.

Until his retirement in 2001, he was chair of the music acoustics research group that he founded in 1968 at the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm. He is a member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Music and a member and former president of the Swedish Acoustical Society, and a Fellow of the Acoustical Society of America.

For more information, call 2-2515 or email

Open enrollment for benefits is under way

The deadline for full-time faculty and staff to submit their 2010 enrollment forms for health care, dental and vision coverage and life insurance to the Office of Human Resources is 5 p.m. Nov. 20.

There are several changes this year. During open enrollment, each full-time faculty and staff member must submit a form and choose an option for health benefits. Plan A remains the same as the current plan, while the new, second plan offers higher deductibles and out-of-pocket maximums but also enhanced wellness benefits.

Another new offering is a vision care plan.

Again this year, those whose spouse has primary coverage under the BGSU plan must submit the Primary Coverage Spouse Form in order to continue or begin coverage for 2010.

All forms and important open enrollment information are online at

During the month of open enrollment, meetings will be held to review the two health care plans, employees’ life insurance opportunities, the new vision plan and health- and child- care reimbursement accounts. Benefit representatives can take your enrollment forms at these meetings as well.

Meetings will be held: 
• Tomorrow (Nov. 3) at 10 p.m. in 1 College Park
• Thursday (Nov. 5) at 11 a.m. in 1004 Cedar Point Center, BGSU Firelands
• Nov. 12 at 2 p.m. in 1 College Park

To attend one of the sessions, call 2-8421 to reserve a seat.

Talk to examine status of anonymous speech

When James Madison, Alexander Hamilton and John Jay published what are now known as the Federalist Papers, in support of the proposed U.S. Constitution, they did so anonymously for fear of retribution. Since then, the U.S. Supreme Court has upheld protections to speak anonymously under the First Amendment.

Today, as more speech moves online, the right to speak anonymously faces new challenges, particularly when plaintiffs want to sue anonymous speakers for what they say online.

In “Revealing John Doe: The Origins and Culture of Anonymous Speech in U.S. Law,” Dr. Victoria Ekstrand, journalism, will discuss the cultural and legal implications of anonymous speech based on the arguments presented by both sides in two Ohio disputes, McIntyre v. Ohio Elections Commission (1995) and Watchtower Bible v. Village of Stratton (2002). Her free lecture will be held at 1 p.m. Nov. 10 in 207 Bowen-Thompson Student Union.

“I’m interested in the history and traditions of anonymous speech and how those old rules are being applied in a new age,” Ekstrand said.  “If someone is defamed on the Internet or their trade secret is revealed, does the victim have the right to demand that the Internet Service Provider reveal the identity of the poster? And how will courts balance the rights of plaintiffs to seek remedies for what is said about them against defendants’ arguments that anonymous speech is a fundamental First Amendment right? Courts have so far struck the balance in different ways, and the result is a number of different legal tests for deciding whether or not to reveal a speaker's identity.

As part of her research, Ekstrand has interviewed the attorneys in the Ohio cases about how they presented their cases to “give us another window into the debate.” One was a country lawyer, another the director of the American Civil Liberties Union and the third an assistant attorney general.

Ekstrand is a Fellow this semester at BGSU’s Institute for the Study of Culture and Society. Her teaching and research interests include digital piracy and news piracy, particularly in terms of the cultural, historical and legal foundations for the ownership of communication and creative work. She has published in Communication Law and Policy, and Journalism and Mass Communication Quarterly. For nine years she served as the New York City director of corporate communications for the Associated Press. She is at work on a on a book-length study of the history, culture and law of anonymous speech in the U.S.

Discounted tickets offered for ‘Falstaff’

The Toledo Opera is offering BGSU faculty and staff a 20 percent discount on tickets to its production of Verdi’s comic opera “Falstaff.”

Performances will be at 7:30 p.m. Saturdays, Nov. 7 and Nov. 13, and at 2 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 15, at the Valentine Theatre in downtown Toledo.

The opera will be sung in Italian, with English supertitles.

To purchase tickets, call the box office at 419-418-0011 and mention that you are a BGSU employee.

November 2, 2009

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