Articles with tag: social media

07/15/2022 _Perspective

Hijacking the Patriarchy

Pussy Riot’s and LASTESIS’ Networked Performances

-- TRIGGER AND FLASH WARNING: video contributions depict violent and flashing content [1] 1_From Witnessing to Acting Since the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic at the latest, most of us have been hooked on portable, networked devices 24/7 and are one swipe away from photographing, recording and live-streaming human-rights abuses, and state violations. Canadian computer engineer Steve Mann labels such actions as “sousveillance,” a combination of the French words “sous,” below, and “veiller,” to watch, highlighting the subversive potential of inverse surveillance as a tool of social and political resistance. [2] The rise of smartphone and social media users from the mid-2000s onwards, and with it the extended possibilities of processing and distribution of content, have resulted in an unprecedented, civilian agency and visibility. [3] German media scholars Winfried Gerling, Susanne Holschbach, and Petra Löffler point out that with the interactive and collaborative nature of Web 2.0., new digital and networking technologies have catalyzed the faltering position of journalistic gatekeepers and the greater say of civilians. [4] In addition to contributions by journalistic professionals, online content created by amateurs, influencers, and activists is increasingly channeled into media coverage and political opinion-making. The lowered thresholds of media agency and knowledge production resulted in a state of “distributed testimony,” in which the authenticity, credibility, and motivation of online content must be constantly assessed, all too often at the discretion of the viewers. [5] Networked visibility is not only about bearing witness to historical events and societal grievances, but also about creating an affective visual language and a participatory formula to activate decentralized, online communities. Tailoring content for the benefit of its viral performativity is, however, highly ambivalent: while operating against hegemonic structures and those in power, one simultaneously must obey their codes, which reinforces the mechanisms of communicative capitalism such as big data control, digital labor, and online voyeurism. [6] Activists have cleverly adapted to the shifting media landscape and its dynamics to spread their causes and mobilize international audiences. By intentionally producing or appropriating viral content and targeting online communities, they profit from so-called clicktivism, the act of liking, commenting, and sharing activist posts. [7] Once pushed online, it is almost impossible to track or fully remove activist content, as feeds are constantly updated and remixed on multiverse online platforms. This paradigm shift—from being represented (journalism before Web 2.0.), to being seen (“sousveillance,” “distributed testimony”) and ultimately, to acting (platform hijacking,…

12/20/2019 _Perspective

Modernist Architecture and Visual Culture

Online Forms of Distribution

Twenty years ago, architecture that played a role in people’s everyday lives, such as this panel housing building from Dushanbe, Tajikistan (Fig. 1) would have been known only by the locals and maybe by some professionals interested in the history of architecture in the Soviet Union. Nowadays, photographic representations emphasizing the structure and design of the building are available on social media for a wide range of audiences. […]

Exploring Surveillance Culture

It seems to make sense — though it might be annoying — when you receive internet ads that seem to match your interests, just after you clicked on a site for household tools or exotic vacations. This is a commonplace, unremarkable online event in the early twenty-first century. But what about old-fashioned email? Can corporate surveillance track you there? Surely. Commercial emails contain a high density of third-party trackers. [1] […]