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Cut the Cookie: Dark Patterns in BIG DATA

Cut the Cookie: Dark Patterns in BIG DATA

Cookies, introduced as a promise of choice, developed into an institutional nuisance one encounters daily. Formerly an attempt to provide Europeans with a consent infrastructure for or against participation in Big Data practices turned into an exercise in ethical...
Screwing around and the value of alternative knowledge platforms 


Screwing around and the value of alternative knowledge platforms 


Through the lens of Stephen Ramsay’s concept of “screwing around”, this commentary looks at the value of alternative knowledge platforms such as Are.na as a tool to counteract the linear and restrictive roads a search engine can lead a...
One Magic Leap For Mankind: Is this visual platform the magic bullet to remote learning?

One Magic Leap For Mankind: Is this visual platform the magic bullet to remote learning?

The pedagogical shift from classrooms to chatrooms, exacerbated by the ongoing pandemic, has changed education—for better and worse. This blog post seeks to explore some of these issues and how Magic Leap 1, which is a wearable head-mounted AR...
From art to ethical design; Studio Roosegaarde’s quest for a sustainable and aesthetic future

From art to ethical design; Studio Roosegaarde’s quest for a sustainable and aesthetic future

The clock is ticking: sea levels and temperatures are rising, plastic is building up, and animals face extinction. What if art can be the activator for change?
Contact tracing: an aid for humanity or a Trojan horse of surveillance?

Contact tracing: an aid for humanity or a Trojan horse of surveillance?

By Sophie Letschert (smwletschert@outlook.com), Caroline Stanislawczyk (claarecaro@gmail.com) and Karlygash Nurdilda (k.nurdilda@gmail.com) Introduction Can contact tracing apps become the ultimate flooding gates for private data to flow into the hands of the third parties, bringing out health surveillance en masse?...
Only[Adult]Fans: Affording Digital Sex Work

Only[Adult]Fans: Affording Digital Sex Work

In a time when many were either let go from their job or suffering from lack of human contact during isolation, one online service which mends both of these issues in differing ways  – for reasons we will investigate further...
Censorship creates discourse: the implications of banning political advertising

Censorship creates discourse: the implications of banning political advertising

Ayushi Arora (13237748, arora.ayushi@gmail.com) Thomas Ba (13286544, thomas.ba.7@outlook.it) Maurice Dharampal (10439250, maurice.dharampal@student.uva.nl) Alex Soete (13208918, alex.soete@gmail.com) Introduction Is free-speech under attack? Founder and CEO of Facebook Mark Zuckerberg has recently joined the head of Twitter, Jack Dorsey, in the...
Video Games as Infrastructures of Resistance

Video Games as Infrastructures of Resistance

This blog post covers a heavily understudied area of digital activism: online video games. With people in self-isolation and trapped in their houses for over half a year now, it is crucial that we recognize the creative ways people...
Why Venezuelans are ganging up on Old School Runescape to combat the effects of an economic crisis

Why Venezuelans are ganging up on Old School Runescape to combat the effects of an economic crisis

As the economic crisis gets worse, some Venezuelans look online to play video games. By selling the in-game gold for real life currency, they make a living. Recently, the Venezuelan players of Old School RuneScape have formed a big...
High Fidelity: 3D audio space as an antidote for Zoom-fatigue and a medium for organic interactions

High Fidelity: 3D audio space as an antidote for Zoom-fatigue and a medium for organic interactions

A virtual 3D audio space opens up a whole host of questions regarding high-level affordances. Can media such as this space afford something resembling natural communication? Has corona crisis changed the way we view new media objects and why...
Online Activism meets Digital Gaming: Protesters are now taking to the virtual streets

Online Activism meets Digital Gaming: Protesters are now taking to the virtual streets

Online activism has allowed for many positive changes to occur within socio-political sectors via social media campaigns and online petitions; now, digital gamers have taken an interest in activism. The innovative form of online protesting has caused quite a...
Smoke Signals: A technical and ideological response to U.S. surveillance in 2020

Smoke Signals: A technical and ideological response to U.S. surveillance in 2020

Americans have a lot to say in 2020, and protests are the chosen platform of the year. With race-fueled police brutality reaching peak heights, people are occupying space physically and vocally to say their piece in the Black Lives...
Technological Migration: New Media and the Protection of Migratory Species

Technological Migration: New Media and the Protection of Migratory Species

Wildlife GPS tracking is becoming more common practice, helping our understanding of migratory routes. ICARUS is a key driver within these technological developments, with new media playing a vital role in their strategy to help prevent the extinction of...
Who gets previewed? Racial Bias and User Experiments within Twitter’s Algorithmic Image Cropping

Who gets previewed? Racial Bias and User Experiments within Twitter’s Algorithmic Image Cropping

Recently Twitter users have been discovering the algorithmic bias of Twitter's image cropping system. How have they experimented and what do we do with the results? Why is Twitter selecting white faces? Why does it prefer Ted Cruz with...
Tinder vs. Bumble: Can You Afford Falling in Love?

Tinder vs. Bumble: Can You Afford Falling in Love?

From its very beginning, “the Internet has supported social interaction and the search for a soul mate” (Whitty 212). This research explores the dating app phenomenon in-depth, comparing two popular dating apps: Tinder and Bumble. How do Tinder’s affordances...
You Cannot Weigh Beauty (but Your Body can be Commercialized)

You Cannot Weigh Beauty (but Your Body can be Commercialized)

Introduction In the media women bodies are often portrayed by the preference of thin body types characterized as ideal body types (Martin et al 609). For instance, when looking at the United States, women shown on television tend to...
“Blue Tick Brigade”: A critique of Twitter’s verification system as a shaper of online self-presentation

“Blue Tick Brigade”: A critique of Twitter’s verification system as a shaper of online self-presentation

By Agustín Ferrari Braun, Eleni Maragkou, Marie-Liesse H, Shivaani Gore Over the course of the past years, politics in Europe and the United States have become increasingly concerned with the nature of online personhood. Only last month, the far-right...
‘Quiet Ride’ in Uber: Technology Defeats Small Talk.

‘Quiet Ride’ in Uber: Technology Defeats Small Talk.

In May 2019, Uber announced that they have added the quiet ride feature. People who call an uber can now make a preference for the level of conversation they want to have with their driver: prefer quiet, or let...
Free Trial Surfing or how to reshape affordances through institutional legitimization

Free Trial Surfing or how to reshape affordances through institutional legitimization

DoNotPay is a company that announced a new app called ‘Free Trial Surfing’ which generates fake credit card details that users can use to sign up for free trials of (web) services without risking having to pay after the...
Neurchi d’algorithmes

Neurchi d’algorithmes

In 2017 Mark Zuckerberg decided that he wanted to help Nigerian women and reinvigorate Facebook’s business model. Somehow it triggered a renaissance in French memes.
Swipe you left out of my life!

Swipe you left out of my life!

How the features of tinder encourage both connectedness and social indifference As the world is becoming more digitally connected and people are becoming more reliant on the Internet and digital technologies for various aspects of their lives, it comes...
Mission Control: The changing boundaries of control and ownership in the world’s biggest crowd funding success.

Mission Control: The changing boundaries of control and ownership in the world’s biggest crowd funding success.

The latest controversy surrounding the in development game Star Citizen, struck me as illustrative of the pitfalls and complexities of new forms of financing, and how they manifest the sunk cost fallacy in new, unexpected ways. It isn’t just...
The Zero UI Music Player

The Zero UI Music Player

One of the most iconic computers in cinema is certainly HAL9000 from Stanley Kubrick’s epos 2001: A Space Odyssey. With all inner workings hidden beneath a red light in a camera lens, the mischievous A.I. created an eerie atmosphere...
WhatsApp Killings: Affordances Of The Platform

WhatsApp Killings: Affordances Of The Platform

In the past year, there have been multiple mob killings in India (Vindu Goel, Suhasini Raj and Priyadarshini Ravichandran). At least 30 people have been murdered by these mobs (Michael Safi). Why are these killings happening? The answer is...