Street Ghosts

Monday, 24 September 2012

Google Ghostbusters by The 11th Doctor

Paolo Cirio || Street Ghosts

A spectre is haunting Google's private collection of misappropriated, digitized bodies – the spectre of Street Ghosts. Posters of people captured by Google's Street View cameras are printed in colour on thin paper, cut along the outline, and rematerialized [via wheatpaste] to the buildings in front of which they were photographed. By simply existing in the city and investing it with social meaning, a nonconsenting public unintentionally provides value for the Street View cameras to capture. All that is solid melts into gluttonous data. Google sells ads alongside this amassment of vestigial bodies, then resells the information collected to the same advertisers, making billions that aren't even taxedStreet Ghosts intervenes by exploring boundaries of ownership and exposure, confronting the public with data they didn't even know they were alienating. "I ain't afriad of no biopolitical arrogation of the aesthetic and political value of the social labour we perform by constituting the public."