Search results for 'theory'



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The Art of Campaigning 

The idea for the Art of Campaigning topic originates from the works of the McLibel group [www.mcspotlight.org]. Their type of net.campaign questions previous forms of activism, which was focused on the mass media and their ability to influence public opinion, by staging direct action (targeted at known media makers). Big NGO's such as Greenpeace have built up experiences with this model for decades. The scenarios they use have not changed much since the seventies. There is the usual PR material: official reports, books, folders, flyers, magazine and original video footage, shot on location. Campaigns are being planned long in advance. The way of working does not differ much from a campaign to launch a new product. Professionalism has taken over the task of volunteers. Their role is being reduced to that of a local support group, doing the actual grass roots work with the population.

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    The Re-Code.Com Story 

    Conceptual Overview

    The products we purchase are the inventory of our lives. To chain stores, this inventory is cataloged through the Universal Product Locator symbol (UPC). The UPC symbol is known as a barcode. Barcodes are now found everywhere in our world, extending outside of product inventory into our comic books, our science fiction, our films, and even our tattoos. These codes represent the fears of literally becoming numbers or becoming digital that are in many of us. These are not fears we wish to dismiss. The RE-CODE.COM project brings together the tactical media actions of the Carbon Defense League and the video and performance hijacks of Conglomco in a way that takes online action outside of the box for real world instigation. Looking at the heavy reliance on digital systems in chain stores utilizing the UPC barcode system, we see a problem or a virus in the system. The virus is the human. We are the nightmare of the digital to some extent. We are the squeaky wheel.

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    Notes on the Politics of Software Culture 

    Software has, over the last few years, increasingly come into view as a cultural technique whose social and political impact ought to be studied carefully. To the extent that social processes rely on software for their execution - from systems of e-government and net-based education, online banking and shopping, to the organisation of social groups and movements -, it is necessary to understand the procedural specificities of the computer programmes employed, and the cultural and political 'rules' coded into them.

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      The Concept of Tactical Media 

      Tactical Media emerged when the modest goals of media artists and media activists were transformed into a movement that challenged everyone to produce their own media in support of their own political struggles. This "new media" activism was based on the insight that the long-held distinction between the 'street' (reality) and the 'media' (representation) could no longer be upheld. On the contrary, the media had come to infuse all of society.

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      The Flexible Personality: For a New Cultural Critique 

      The events of the century's turn, from Seattle to New York, have shown that a sweeping critique of capitalist globalization is possible, and urgently necessary-before the level of violence in the world dramatically increases. The beginnings of such a critique exist, with the renewal of "unorthodox" economics. [1] But now one can look further, toward a critique of contemporary capitalist culture.

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      Art and the Paradoxical Citizen 

      To the Arts, Citizens: it's a fantastic title. Hearing it, anyone who's been involved in political activism will probably think: "At last we're getting somewhere." The idea that art is part of citizenship, that there is a democratic exercise of the arts within the framework of public life, and that this appeal to the citizen-artist can be supported by a major cultural institution, is about as progressive as you could get today. Especially since this is a direct echo of the French republican tradition, where the phrase, Aux armes citoyens, is nothing less than a call to rise up and institute democracy against tyranny ? in other words, a call to revolution. The Portuguese know the meaning of this revolutionary call to arms from decisive historical events that are still in living memory. So one can imagine that the organizers of this exhibition did not take their title lightly.

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      Stop Streaming and Listen: Fight Post-Governmental-Content-Control Streaming Media breaks UK law - find out why nobody wants to care... 

      Streaming media deliver video or audio content over the web. But streaming media are very different from the web. In the UK such formats force BT to breach the Broadcasting and Telecommunications Act. To the grass-roots activist web-critics, this might be the right (and most likely only) time to pull the plug and prune the web. Alternatively we could happily stream on and witness how independent media production will be pushed to the periphery of the new order. Here is one of many scenarios...

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      The GHI of Tactical Media 

      Tactical media are the field being worked by artists adopting a positive attitude towards contemporary digital technology, in a critical, innovative spirit. Media artists reveal a preoccupation with aesthetics as a concept, not with a particular style. This trend is part of the creation of a new language for the communications network era, a user language which is successful as art because it transmits an effective activism. Media activists are a hybrid of artist, scientist, theoretician and political activist that shuns labels and categorizations. Their creations are characterised by integration of user and machine in the work itself, so that interactivity has an important place within it. The concept of tactical media allows Art with a capital and grassroots political activism to be combined and, in this sense, we could include in it the tactical struggle that is part of anti-globalisation movements. Media activists point to the power of tactics as a means of breaking down the barriers between mainstream values and alternative ones, between professionals and amateurs and even between people who are creative and those that are not.

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      Fuzzy Biological Sabotage 

      If the left has learned anything from resistance against capital driven technocracy, it is that the democratic process is only minimally useful for slowing the profit machine of pancapitalism. Since corporations and other capital-saturated institutions own the process, and tend to function outside national democratic imperatives, other methods of power appropriation have to be developed. In the case of biotechnology, the resistance is unfortunately in a position of reactivity. Corporations have already infiltrated most governments and markets at such a furious pace that all that can be done is attempt to slow them down, while cells and organizations regroup and decide on a way to address the many problems that have already arisen, and the many potential accidents that are in front of us.

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        Distance versus Desire 

        The desire to transcend distance and separation has accompanied the history of media technology for many centuries. Various attempts to realise the demand for a presence from a distance have produced beautiful imaginaries such as those of telepresence and ubiquity, the electronic cottage and the reinvigoration of  the oikos, and certainly not least among them the reduction of physical mobility in favour of an ecologically more sustainable connected life style.  As current systems of hypermobility are confronted with an unfolding energy crisis and collide with severe ecological limits - most prominently in the intense debate on global warming - citizens and organisations in advanced and emerging economies alike are forced to reconsider one of the most daring projects of the information age: that a radical reduction of physical mobility is possible through the use of advanced telepresence technologies.

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        Die Informationsbombe 

        Ausgestrahlt im Deutsch-Franzoesischen Kulturkanal ARTE November 1995.


        In den fuenfziger Jahren hat Albert Einstein gesagt, dass wir es mitdrei Bomben zu tun haetten. Die erste, die Atombombe, sei bereitsgezuendet. Die zweite sei die Informatikbombe; die dritte, dieBevoelkerungsbombe, werde im 21. Jahrhundert explodieren. Gegenwaertigexplodiert die Informatikbombe. Neue Technologien, insbesondere dieMoeglichenkeiten zur Schaffung virtueller Welten, veraendern Kultur,Politik und Gesellschaft grundlegend. Zu diesem Thema diskutieren heuteabend im Gespraech der Stadtplaner und Philosoph Paul Virilio undFriedrich Kittler, Medienspezialist an der Humboldt Universitaet inBerlin.

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