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The Masked Body

The great digital masquerade

Workshop on digital visibility and invisibility, with Enric Luján (Críptica)

Courses and workshops

This workshop aims to offer keys to the current digital masquerade, which today is a filter to access reality: from the influencer phenomenon to disinformation, anonymous profiles and the rise of biometric control. Theoretical and practical workshops to learn how the “new normality” of the Internet of 2022 works.

In the digital world, nothing is what it seems. The platforms host a permanent festival of masks, where profiles, contents and even the main currents of opinion are artifices generated to condition us both individually (acting on our psychology) and collectively (through opinion-building campaigns).

 

The mask is the new face

15 March

The current design of social media invites its users to dream of one day becoming influencers, a state that can be achieved indiscriminately through photographs, opinions and flaming. The problem with this obsession is the progressive homogenization of personalities, as most choose (consciously or not) to adapt their register and the style of their contents to go as viral as possible.

In the practical part, we introduce the notion of biometrics, and explain how facial recognition technologies work and how they have adapted to the mass use of masks due to the COVID-19 crisis. We’ll list the different criteria for measuring the face and assess (in terms of usability and effectiveness) various art projects that have tried to challenge and confuse these control systems.

 

Masks, public opinion and published opinion

22 March

Opinion creation campaigns serve to convey an image of public opinion which, despite not corresponding exactly to reality, does seek to have an effect on it in order to encourage the proliferation of desired positions. How has present-day politics ended up in the dead-end of being more dependent on public opinion than ever, when it has shown itself to be a masquerade?

In the practical part we visit the lucrative market of buying and selling followers and reviews, designed to project an image of reality tailored to the client. And, as an extreme form of this phenomenon, we’ll dive into the underworld of bots: how they tend to be used in opinion-building campaigns, and how we can prevent them on our timelines.

 

Masks and the Internet: a fleeting affair?

29 March

Does today’s Internet allow the use of face masks? Why might an “ordinary” person need to wear a mask in the digital world? A cultural and technological history of how we seem to have gone from an Internet that aimed to completely depersonalize communication to an increasingly personal, real-world network: have the founding principles of the Internet been betrayed?

In the practical part, we’ll use the most common digital face masks, VPNs and Tor, as tools available to “ordinary” people to evade content censorship, get published anonymously, and evade activity logging by the platform and the service provider.

Participants: Enric Luján

This activity is part of The Mask Never Lies, The Masked Body

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Upcoming activities at the CCCB