Designing Digital Domestics
- w/ Beyla Popanda, Fabian Tombers
This workshop was a small side activity for everyone who wanted to take part. On a Tuesday evening, in the context of a group Jitsi call and along with a calming sonic performance, we all decorated our video chatting booths.
To come together as a group is a speculation We are spending time together and worlds from our imaginations spring to life.
Throughout the last couple of months, all of us have been physically isolating ourselves. As the tech savvy society we are, we have seen an uptick in video chats as methods of working together, spending time with our families or see our missed friends.
This is us, giving our best to build resilience against loneliness. A struggle that feels exaggerated now, but has been with us for a long time. How to not be alone in a world that targets us as individual consumers and individual producers and never as a social organism that relies on it’s networks and connections for survival.
Funnily enough we believe that most Videochat tools are developed with this individualistic framework in mind. They exist to boost our productivity, to make us better at producing or recently (with the advent of things like shared Netflix streams) they also make us better at consumption.
We want to ask if it’s possible to Hijack these services to built networks of care and joy and friendship with the hope that we stumble upon technical boundaries of these services that can reveal how contemporary video chatting platforms are mediating our experience of intimacy.
Time to use the pixilated rectangle perspective of 2020 to our advantage. These days we can wear very low res fashion, can frame our part of this world the way we like and make it our own. We see this as a simple exercise that could send vibrations throughout the rest of the workshops, when people will be meeting each other online in smaller groups. What are they going to find? An inside beach? Your new cool hat? Or maybe there are secrets hiding behind the glowing screens, will you ever know?