hot new topics?

"Privacy and surveillance are the new hot topics, Mr. Tribe said". If this is an accurate report of what Mark Tribe said on the subject of the undeadness of net art, then I disagree with him on a number of points.

First of all, yes of course, privacy and surveillance are massively important areas of concern, but within a very specific critical framework.

I would argue that issues of privacy and surveillance are related to the intensification of commodification, and that artists' ownership of the processes of commodification is critically important.

It is critically important, because the commodification of parts of our lives previously untouched by capitalism is intensifying, and those areas being affected are areas such as


, Rob Myers

On 1 Apr 2004, at 11:34, Kate Southworth wrote:

> I think the space between owning the processes of commodification and
> critiquing the very same processes of commodification is possibly a
> useful space to be right now.

As long as that critique takes the form of action rather than bad art
or (God help us) cultural studies seminars.

Art (and design) should be in the service of (or the exemplification
of) Free (Open/Commons/Gift) Culture. Really producing an alternative
rather than just complaining about the lack of one. Helping make those
ideas accessible, embodying them, singing their praises. The Internet
is already the primary forum for that culture, "Net"-art can feed
straight into it without visiting Eeyore on the way.

- Rob.