The Future of Protest (Images) in a Post-Digital Age

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


    The production, circulation, and reception of images—through the popular social networking websites Facebook and Twitter, microblogging, and other applications such as YouTube—has effectively ensured that digitally networked images have become a constituent part of the process of organizing, provoking, and maintaining the momentum of protests.

    Given the extent to which algorithms increasingly determine whether an incident is viewed as “newsworthy” or not, it is likely that an actual protest could result from an inadvertent torquing of an algorithmic setting. Similarly, the underlying algorithmic rationalization of what is deemed to be newsworthy and, indeed, un-newsworthy could see a large-scale public disturbance go relatively unnoticed. In this essay, the author explores the immaterial abstractions of machine learning, the product of algorithmic input, and whether it could predicate an act of physical violence, knowingly or otherwise, by spreading so-called “fake news” or inciting protests. What, the author asks, is the future of protest in a post-digital age? What impact do digital technologies have on contemporary protests and, crucially, how will we come to experience and understand the event of protest as a material activity in the future?
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationThe Protest and the Recuperation
    EditorsBetti Sue Hertz, Sreshta Rit Premnath
    Place of PublicationUnited States
    PublisherWallach Gallery, Columbia University, NYC
    Number of pages19
    ISBN (Print)9781884919367
    Publication statusPublished (VoR) - 5 Apr 2021


    • Digital Methodologies, Algorithms, AI, and Protest


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