Archive

Cyborg Anthropology and the Evaporation of the Interface

When you look at your online pro­file, is that real­ly you? It’s a rep­re­sen­ta­tion of you that can be act­ed on when you’re not there. But where do you end and the machine begins? The thing is that humans and tech­nol­o­gy have coe­volved with each oth­er over time, being very very cocre­ative. We have sur­vived because of tech­nol­o­gy, and tech­nol­o­gy has sur­vived because of us.

Eleanor Saitta at The Conference 2015

What I’m talk­ing about here is not what we need to do cul­tur­al­ly or polit­i­cal­ly, it’s not the roots of online harass­ment. It’s the design tools that we can use to shape the envi­ron­ments that peo­ple inter­act in to reduce the impact.

Bot Activism Through Tools Instead of Content

So what I did was I made a pret­ty pow­er­ful anti‐harassment tool, and I’m kind of leery of… It’s one of those things that like I, I feel weird about it because I don’t have a tremen­dous use for it myself, but I know that oth­er peo­ple do. And I’ve talked to peo­ple about this, and I sort of made the deci­sion not to put it on Github or be pub­lic about it for main­ly the rea­son that I think Twitter is kind of weird with harass­ment, and I think they’re weird with block­ing, and I think they have a strange track record of mak­ing the tools that are use­ful to peo­ple who are try­ing to pro­tect them­selves and be safer sort of weird­ly hard­er to access and kind of obscure.