2. Random NewsLondon, 2020
Speculative design project (Google Chrome Extension) in development. In collaboration with Nayonika Chatterjee, Yimin Qiao and Win Shan Shong.
Reflecting upon the fact that we are 4 students from countries in the midst of protests and revolts, we wanted to address our struggle to participate/get informed about them. Because of well-known ‘echo chambers’ developed with the emergence of social media based on networks of ‘friends’, we end up stuck in an Information loop. Perpetually looking at the same sources and never stepping out in zones of clashing political views.
Our Information sources will of course differ from our parents’, therefore enhancing a generational gap when it comes to opinions towards protests. It is notoriously known that Media adapt to target groups, designing their content accordingly. Thus, we ‘feed’ ourselves from fixed Media platforms reinforcing our own political statement.
With this circulatory system we rarely confront the consensus we make for ourselves.
Is there a way to open up our perspective in order to empower us as critical Information receivers?
In the pre-production state of the google extension, we produced an advertisement for its presentation to the public. The ‘ad’ is aimed for a future crowdfunding phase. We elaborated it by subverting commercial codes of ad-making in ‘famous’ communication brands.
The video demonstrates how this google extension functions as a news randomizer.
By simple ‘hoovering’ on a word/phrase that interests you in the article you’re reading, this ‘sniffer’ extension takes you on another news platform that features exactly the same word/phrase. It might be that this new platform of Information popping up will present an opposite perspective on the subject, an arguably off-topic article about it or even Fake News about it.
The aim is to challenge our reception of Information and question it on a more regular basis. Is this article a valuable piece of Information? Where is its provenance and what will I do about it once read through?