In May 2004 Susanne Jaschko gave a lecture on ‘The Art of Hacking – or: Communication Guerrilla as Artistic Practice with New Media’ and a presentation of selected video art pieces of last year’s transmediale festival during which they discussed both the aesthetics and exhibition formats of the works
In 1998 a 21 year old guy named ïto messed up the world of marketing by inventing a very unconventional marketing campaign for a Macintosh computer: the so called “hack- Mac”. This design for a computer cited a military look with camouflage pattern and a solid-defensive casing, thus looking like both a fancy accessoire and a possible weapon. Consequently, the campaign was made up with the obvious slogan “think weapon” in the original Apple Macintosh-fond and the apple motive in slightly darkened colours.
About 80 years before the 32 year old shooting star of the American art scene, Marcel Duchamps, started a campaign featuring good old Mona Lisa with a fashionable moustache. Duchamps used a postcard of the Mona Lisa painting and added the beard with pencil. He then sent out the so treated postcards and claimed them to be art.
Both projects are classical examples of use of guerrilla strategies in communication and art, the latter could even be taken for the first communication guerrilla activity in art history.
So what makes those two activities guerrilla campaigns?
Let’s start with Duchamps’ mail art action: his intention was to dodge the commercial art market and its traditional distribution channels by both bringing the art directly to the recipient and by pointing at the commercialisation and trivialisation of art. Therefore he uses the industrial product of an art postcard and deflowers the icon of Mona Lisa with a moustache. Naturally this provocative strategy arrested a lot of attention and lead to the aspired discussion. Thus Duchamps attacked the art system by the use of an ordinary communication system, the mail, and became a predecessor of the mail art movement that reached its zenith in the 50’s with the smart and provocative mails by Ray Johnson.
Coming back to the “hac-Mac”, ïto designed it without any commission by Apple Macintosh, though it looks like a real advertisement for a real computer, neither the computer existed nor was it published for Apple Macintosh’s commercial purpose. Instead it was only invented for the commercial purpose of the designer ïto, who at that time was rather unknown and who applied this campaign for the promotion of his freshly founded design label “Ora-ito”. Besides ïto designed a number of other virtual products and campaigns like a Gucci-house and promoted them on his website. From there those products were quickly picked up by design magazines that spread the information widely and provided ïto with international attention. In fact, ïto made use of a classical marketing strategy: the so-called “guerrilla marketing” that intends to achieve attention through surprising, extraordinary and entertaining actions with only a tiny budget.
Guerrilla Marketing was invented around the mid 60’s in the US first as a strategy of attack and attrition and the term “guerrilla marketing” referred to the then held dispute about the guerrilla tactics used in the Vietnam war. Since then guerrilla marketing has become a popular practice especially for small and financially weak companies as it promises maximum attention with a minimum capital invested.
Significantly, Ito did not only apply guerrilla marketing tactics but created a fictional tool for guerrilla communication activities: a computer specifically designed for hacking.
Explaining the term
But what do I exactly mean by this catchy term communication guerrilla, which art projects and activities can be summarised under this idea in a meaningful way?
Starting with the semiotic roots of the composite term, the word ‘communication’ implicates ‘the act of communicating; transmission; the exchange of thoughts, messages, or information, as by speech, signals, writing, or behaviour’, whereas the term ‘communications’ stands for ‘a means of communicating, like a system, such as mail, telephone, or television, for sending and receiving messages or a network of routes for sending messages and transporting troops and supplies’.
‘Guerrilla’ means ‘an irregular, usually indigenous military or paramilitary unit operating in small bands in occupied territory to harass and undermine the enemy, as by surprise raids.’
Connecting both terms, the ‘Communication Guerrilla’ term describes an irregular, aggressive unit, operating with the help of communications and media to harass and undermine the power of the enemy who occupies (public) territory.
In the younger past, a huge number of strong media projects have been realised that make use of guerrilla tactics in order to intrude on social, political, economic or communication systems, and to infiltrate, misuse and alter them finally. Intrusion is usually achieved by hacking the borders of the respective system, and here the term ‘hacking’ is used regarding to its both meanings, which are ‘to break up the surface’ and ‘to gain access to a system or network illegally or without authorisation’.
Particularly in media culture, political activism and art melt into one another due to the quality of the Internet serving as a distribution channel both for information and for art, and its ability to connect communities of artists and activists globally. Internet is fiercely embattled public territory that after some initial moments of cultural and legal liberty progressively was understood by entrepreneurship and the global market leaders as economic space where the old juridical and capitalist system should be applied.
This occupation of territory caused a vivid and diverse countermovement that today is labelled with terms like ‘net piracy’ or ‘net activism’ which have the creation of an innovative economic, political and cultural system in view including the account for copy left and open source. In his article ‘pirates in the kingdom of data’ Bernhard Günther illuminates the history of piracy and its connection to net activism and comes to the surprising conclusion that pirates’ republics were ancestors of welfare states because of their distinct court system and progressive democracy. Consequently it is stated, that ‘net piracy’ could have the same potential of pointing to a future social and economic system.
So does Communication Guerrilla Art, which is not limited to the Internet as public domain only and creates space for new utopias by radical means.
Whilst some guerrilla art activities are executed in reality, others just quote guerrilla tactics in order to confuse and operate indirectly. Often the amateur recipient or viewer cannot recognise the difference between the real and the fictional hack.
In order to illustrate what Guerrilla Art is all about I would like to show one first example from 1999 that exactly sounds the boundaries between fiction and real attack. The video by the Spanish Manuel Saiz is entitled ‘Video Hacking’ and a suitable beginning for it shifts between a satire with its humorous and entertaining qualities and a documentary that can be taken for serious. It focuses on the question of authorship and intellectual property in art.
Pre-requisites of Guerrilla Art
In Media Art, we can detect four mayor pre-requisites for the emergence of communication guerrilla tactics:
– the availability of the medium
– the deep impact of technology on life
– the cultural and economic surplus in society
– the politicisation of art in general
The first point, the availability of the medium, is evident: since the computer has become an affordable machine in the 90’s, it rapidly became a medium for artistic expression. With the Internet, it quickly evolved into a networked communication machine, thus offering artists a new channel for distribution of art and for forming new audience groups.
Secondly, computer technology has a deep impact on our everyday live: it led to sustainable changes of working processes, communication, medicine, travelling etc. This dependence on technology has deeply affected personal value systems and interpersonal relationships. The actual scope of the implied consequences is by no way clear, but is by common consent taken for the biggest societal shift since the industrial revolution.
Thirdly, I would argue that we live in times of a large cultural and economic surplus in the western world: we produce more cultural content and goods than we can consume or even need. In face of both, mass media creating an oversupply of aesthetic appeals, and the everyday encounter and consumption of art in urban environment, the use of guerrilla tactics in art and in economy promises attention. In his publication “Reiz und Rührung – über ästhetische Empfindungen” (appeal and emotion – about aesthetic sensation), Konrad Paul Liessmann who teaches philosophy at the Vienna University) puts it like this: “One could risk the thesis that the efforts in contemporary art first and foremost aimed at evoking mixed feelings in radical and intensive forms through pushing the boundaries of the general understanding of art.”
Finally, we can observe a general and international politicisation of art and culture. Current shows like documenta or Venice Biennial document a large field of art production dealing with political, social or economic topics whilst it remains fairly unclear if it’s the present curatorial trend that entails this specific art production or if curators just pick up an enhancing trend in art readily. However, art and culture undergo a noticeable shift of content and form towards a reflection of the everyday reality and its potential conflicts.
Hacking legal borders
The discussion about copy left, open source, liberty of information has had a deep impact on the creative work with technology and results in a couple of outstanding pieces that do not only cross the borders of legality but also undermine the current concept of art.
As a kind of introduction to this chapter I will show a short video by Robert Luxemburg that is taken from the film ‘Matrix’. In Matrix the hero Leo fights against a system of machines ruling the world and exploiting humans. Luxemburg took one of the key scenes of Matrix in which Leo learns about the ‘system’ that he should counter. By ripping the movie (which explains its bad quality) and framing it anew, Luxemburg cleverly employs the protagonist’s statement about the ‘system’ against the economic Hollywood system in which it was born.
In this year’s transmediale competition Luxemburg was nominated with a piece titled ‘The Conceptual Crisis of Private Property as a Crisis in Practice’ for the so-called Software Art Award. The piece’s title is derived from a quote from the book ‘Empire’ by Michael Hardt and Toni Negri: “The conceptual crisis of private property does not become a crisis in practice, and instead the regime of private expropriation has tended to be applied universally.” In the main, the book‘Empire’supposes a reorganisation of the global society and economic system based on the idea of a global network. In this network the principle of sharing dominates and leverages the ancient capitalist profit orientated system.
Luxemburg’s piece is in its core a software programme that is not distributed in binary format, but as a screenshot which can be printed and actually is for sale. The screenshot shows the complete source code which, if executed, transforms the screenshot into the full text of the novel ‘Cryptonomicon’ by Neal Stephenson. This novel not only deals with cryptography, but was actually subject to U.S. export restrictions since it contained a cryptographic algorithm that was considered a trade secret. As you can see, again a download window of ‘Matrix’ appears as a reference to the ‘system’ that should be fought against.
The screenshot, as an artistic work, may be the ‘intellectual property’ of Robert Luxemburg, but, as a piece of software, inherits the free software license.
So on the one hand the screenshot is a circumvention device exploiting the structural flaws in the concept of ‘intellectual property’; on the other hand it is a highly complex, almost labyrinthine and conceptual piece of art.
There isn’t a long history in crime as art, maybe the Russian Alexander Brener can be named as one of its ancestors. His spraying of a green dollar sign on Kasimir Malevich’s painting Suprematism’ and adjacent hunger strike were aiming at fighting art as commodity.
Though media art in big parts opposes the traditional art market and the common notion of art indirectly, there are only few examples of direct fight against the art system.
Instead the hack of legality in media art takes place in various juridical grey zones. I would like to give two more examples of hacking legal borders:
RE-CODE.COM was a free web service that allowed its customers to share product information and create barcodes that can be printed and used to re-code items in stores by placing new labels over existing barcodes to set a lower price. RE-CODE.COM at its core was a shared database, update able by customers.
It was meant so be a satire and a mockery of the website PRICELINE.COM, made to look nearly identical to its counterpart that uses as they call it “revolutionary” advertising approach to entice people to name their own price for goods and services.
After going live on March 12th, 2003, the RE-CODE.com web site went unnoticed for close to 10 days when suddenly it began receiving attention. The project was presented on March 23 at the Museum of Contemporary Arts in Chicago. On April 10th, RE-CODE.com received a cease and desist letter from attorneys representing the world’s largest retail employer, Wal-Mart.
The video shows an extract of the project’s documentation by the authors that was made after the website was taken down.
Another project called ‘Minds of Concern’ by the artist group Knobotic Research was equally stopped when it was first exhibited in May 2002 at the New Museum of Contemporary Art New York. Minds of Concern determines the borders of what is and what is not legal in the (US) public domain and tries to seek out the areas of friction between an active construction of the public domain, the expansive US legal system, and the dimensions of an intensively patrolled, supposedly open communication and information infrastructure like the Internet. The art project consists of a spatial installation designed by Peter Sandbichler and a web interface. The installation is build with a woven hyperbolic matrix out of the risk factor band which creates a border in the space, closes the passage through the space. Knowbotic Research designed a software, the so called, ‘Public Domain Scanner’ which remotely audits the server of Non-Governmental Organisations and inquires their state of security. This act of scanning the public domain on the Internet is on view in the installation, and insecure servers which are easily to attack are published. After the opening of the show and heavy press coverage, the Museum was set under pressure and finally decided to cut it of from the Internet. Though the Public Domain Scanner did not actually harm any of the NGOs servers, the hack itself was assesses to be illegal.
Hacking Technical Borders
The core of the ‘Minds of Concern’ project was the hack of the servers’ security system, so to say the hack of a technical border. The next step would be the infiltration of a virus into a system. Actually, the artistic potential of viruses was nicely on show in the exhibition ‘I love you’, first shown at the Frankfurt Museum for Applied art in 2002. It put the conflicting and divers scene of virus culture on display and presented a recommendable chronology of computer viruses. Beside parasitic viruses that are built in order to destroy data, particularly the 90’s gave birth to a number of artistic software programmes designed and acting like viruses. Maybe the ‘Cascade Virus’ could be taken as a starting point for this emerging field. This virus was released in 1988 and produces a waterfall effect with letters raining down on the display screen. Today, activists and artists like Jaromil or epidemiC create virus programmes that still search for the weaknesses of the system and direct our attention towards their loopholes but at the same time produce an aesthetic result. For most virus programmers no borderline between art and programming does exist. In the catalogue of the ‘I love you’ show, Massimo Ferronato states for the virus scene that he is part of: ‘The viruses are manifestation of creative brain work, which projects the name of its creator in the scene and in the outside world, a replicant capable of travelling in a way that sends out a message about the accomplishment of its inventor.’ And furthermore: ‘Programming is not seen as a means for producing art but an art form in its own right, valued using criteria of beauty, elegance, proportion and effectiveness.’
A first encounter of the two rather hermetic scenes of contemporary art and the art of programming took place in 2001 at Venice Biennial when the representatives of Slovenia, epidemiC collective and the group 01001101110101101.org, launched the biennale.py virus that attached itself to rather rare Macintosh .py and .pyw files in the Biennial’s network but caused no real damage. During the Biennial the source code of biennale.py was on show at the Slovenian Pavilion.
In their press release the artists’ collective state about the function and impact of the virus:
“…a virus wants to exist instinctively and without mediations, and it is just this the main and only function of “biennale.py”: to survive. A new idea of a “virus that is not just a virus” is gaining acceptance, and that it can represent the outbreak of the social into the most social thing of all: the Net. (…)The paradox becomes even clearer if you think that the virus, a vague and dangerous entity by definition, is for sale to adventurous curators and collectors. To buy a computer virus is probably one of the most exciting investment one could make today.”
But as the virus was relatively harmless and easy to remove, and there wasn’t any aesthetic output, Biennale.by did not arrest big attention – which made it to one of the weak communication guerrilla projects.
Hacking Surveillance Systems
One of the favourite targets for hacks is definitely the ubiquitous surveillance system. Long time ago, public sphere has lost its innocence when surveillance cameras entered almost unnoticed, and wiretapping and control of data traffic on the Internet became standard under protection of law especially after the tightening up in the follow-up of 9-11. Artists strongly responded to this increase of surveillance with their artistic work or campaigns, often by using the same technology as the one that they were acting against or by revealing and attacking the respective system’s weak point. A good survey of works can be found in the exhibition Control space that was shown at he ZKM in Karlsruhe Germany in 2002.
With the reproduction of a famous spy software called DCS1000 used by the FBI to perform electronic wiretaps a whole field of artistic experimentation evolved. The Radical Software Group improved the programme and offered it publicly under the title ‘Carnivore’ for artistic use. At the heart of the project is CarnivorePE, a software application that listens to all Internet traffic (email, web surfing, etc.) on a specific local network. Next, CarnivorePE serves this data stream to interfaces called “clients.” A number of artists have designed clients that animate, diagnose, or interpret the network traffic in various ways. So does the client ‘Back and White CNN’ by the famous Net Art veteran Mark Napier. It connects to the internet traffic on the website of CNN.com and transforms the data into clouds of black and white pixels. This visualisation of data can be altered interactively, so that not only the clouds change their appearance due to the individual data passing the client but also though manipulation of the visitor.
In 1996, a group named Surveillance Camera Players began to create made-for Closed-Circuit-Television versions of avant-garde plays, such as Alfred Jarry’s ‘Ubu Roi’and Samuel Beckett’s ‘Waiting for Godot’ and performed the so edited plays in front of surveillance cameras in public space. In 1998 the last literary work, ‘1984’ by George Orwell was adapted, since then the group shifted to performances for the benefit of members of the public who stop to watch their plays in the street or the subway and less for those monitoring the screens. Whilst before 1998 the plays were silent versions only made for the guard staff in front of the monitor, the newer performances directly address also the people on the street and convey a much simpler message.
The participatory network project Track the Trackers is designed to target the same CCTV system, but with a different technology and tactical media components. The work makes use of existing personal technologies in conjunction with the satellite GPS infrastructure to provide participants with an expanded audible experience of the proliferation of video surveillance in the urban public sphere. The mobile unit, a bag containing a laptop, GPS-receiver, earphones, and a generic mouse is taken on a walk through the city. The sound in the headphones changes whenever the participant enters the vicinity of a surveillance camera. This effect is not automatic but created by other participants who are continuously adding new locations to the existing database.
The Internet platform servers as an exchange point for these coordinates: the data gathered in this way is made available to the other participants by uploading it.
The conjoined hack
‘Track the Trackers’ made use of what has been labelled by Geert Lovinck and David Garcia as ‘tactical media’ which are ‘media of crisis, critics and opposition’ and which direct our attention towards a system’s sore point and demanding for the better, often for the utopia, for the unreachable.
The potential of tactical media lies in its quality to build communities as solid structures of participation in which artistic activism evolves. Often artists only design a process or tool whereas active participants carry out the real action. Beside Track the Trackers, another good example for this is the public participatory performance ‘Radioballett’ (radio ballet) by the German radio group Ligna which was premiered at the Hamburg central station in 2002. Its subheading was ‘Übung in unnötigem Aufenthalt’ (exercise in superfluous stay). The performance took action against the practise of the railway company Deutsche Bahn to ban people who want to stay at the station without consuming or travelling. The project used the radio aside the usual way and aimed at constituting a kind of counter-public in quasi public space. In the up-run of the performance leaflets were distributed inviting people to turn up at the station and to bring a radio and headphones. Over 300 people without any intention to buy or travel finally appeared, dispersed at the platforms and the adjunct shopping centre and executed the performance. They moved simultaneously after the instructions transmitted by the local and non-commercial radio channel FSK. Thus gestures and behaviour that the Deutsche Bahn tries to eliminate were brought back to what is usually still perceived as public space.
This occupation of space to some degree likens the occupation of web-servers for instance through the community of users of the ‘AntiMafia’ Software. The AntiMafia program was created by the group epidemiC and is a software programme for co-ordination of collective actions as social events and campaigns. Once the programme is installed on your PC, your computer acts as a node in the AnitMafia community of users. Exchange of information takes place through the Gnutella protocol, so anyone in the community can easily initiate new actions like server blockades and any community member can participate just by registering at the AntiMafia list for the blockade. The rest, which in case of blockade is the connecting to the respective server, is done by your computer automatically.
The channel Internet is a perfect place for collecting and distributing information which was formerly difficult to access. With the Internet an huge number of alternative, participatory information services like for instance ‘Guerrilla News’ popped up, and a couple of artists developed work into a similar direction. Out of these two of the most exposed ones are They Rule by Josh on and the Future farmers and BorderXing Guide by the British Heath Bunting. They Rule was extremely covered by press and widely shown in art shows because it reveals the closely interwoven power structure of the US American economy reminding one of a secret society. This information is open to all Internet users and can even be filled with new maps. Instead the Borderxing Guide allows only access to registered users and can only be visited on a couple of computers around the world that are admitted by Bunting. On the website of Borderxing Guide Bunting publishes information about his illegal crossings of European borders, together with directions of walking, photographs and maps of the area and lists of equipment and do’s and don’ts.
So Bunting addresses questions of immigration, illegality, national state and makes possible visitors to his website painfully experience borders, limited access and registration procedures.
Hacking Human Borders: Deceit and Hoaxes
I want to close my lecture by coming back to the fictional projects that do not primarily aim at hacking technical borders but instead successfully hack human borders. These are artistic works that predominantly pretend and act as a sort of virus which infects man instead of machine, or like Armin Medosch put it: ‘creep in the human feeling world like a Trojan horse.’
I guess we all have experienced virus hoaxes that flood our E-mail accounts since its first breed in 1988, and nearly everyone at least once has been taken in by hoaxes like the Japanese kittens in glass bricks or the famous Internet cleaning day hoax.
Political hoaxes like the online auction of votes for George W. Bush by the activist group Ubermorgen arrested enormous attention such as 400 press articles and finally led to 4 charges and the shutdown of the site.
Naturally virus hoaxes are a very effective marketing tool for anti-virus software sales, because they make people feel insecure and stir their fear of losing control. Fictional guerrilla art uses the same strategy and takes advantage of the illiteracy of the recipient. In order to deceive him, artists try to provoke strong emotions and follow the formal rules and conditions of a real event – just as E-mail hoaxes do that pick up the semiotic and semantic schemes of real E-mails.
Within the Net Art scene there have been a couple of hoaxes that in a very smart way pretended professional debates for example between the theoretician Timothy Druckery and the net artist and poet Mark Amerika or the argument between the renown net activist Geert Lovink and ICANN expert Ted Byfield.
In 2000 the fictional artist Netochka Nezvanova appeared on the stage of media art. Named after a famous character in a novel fragment by Dostojewski, Nezvanova started to post on net art mailing lists. Her postings were extremely polemic, provocative and arty; additionally she authored some artistic software with which she won several awards like the transmediale software award in 2001. To those occasions every time someone else showed up as Netochka Nezvanova and never did what had been agreed upon. So for example at transmediale, the person who claimed to be Nezvanova came for a lecture about her Nebula software in a white dress containing living insects. She successfully hacked the transmediale programme as she preferred to read poems instead of explaining the artistic software.
In 1999 the Spanish artist, Daniel Andujar distributed and exhibited a CD-ROM called ‘Phoney’ that in case of execution of its programmes would attack telecommunication networks through dialling in and launching viruses or spy programmes like Trojan horses. The actual processes that any amateur user of the CD-ROM could easily set going were visible on the computer screen and looked so authentic that it caused maze and fear among users. Most people, who started the programme out of curiosity, ignoring the initial warnings, were convinced to really hack the network and became frightened of the possible consequences of this illegal action. Thus the project achieved what it was aiming at: growing awareness of the weakness of computer networks, recognition of a missing technical or a personal inhibition threshold.
The last project that I want to refer to is a video by the Bureau of Inverse Technology which in 2001 won the International Media Art prize of the ZKM in Karlsruhe, Germany. The video ‘Bit plane’ was recorded by mini camera attached to a model aircraft that flew over the area of the Silicon Valley. It recorded pictures of famous hardware and software company buildings like Xerox and HP, thus moving to an allegedly inaccessible air space and illegally collecting modern effigies of the real. The bad quality of the video and its drop-outs support its authenticity and improve its abstract quality. The commentary supposes that the disturbances actually are caused by companies’ air shield and thus evokes associations of military protection systems.
These fictional projects that infect us like viruses reinforce our immune system and sustain our scepticism. They all aim at stopping us to believe ourselves safe and to attract our attention to the obscurity of categories and simple explanations. When facing such a project we are forced to practice our abilities to judge and become alert the next time we have an encounter with apparently easy-to-judge incidents.
This leads me to some final thoughts about the type of work that I have shown and contextualised during the past hour: As I have said already in the beginning, the presented projects are very difficult to categorise simply as art or as political activities, many lie just in between or oppose to any of those classifications. Actually most project authors don’t understand themselves as artists and try to avoid any kind of statement on their type of work – or even further any kind of contact with the contemporary art system. So it does not surprise that institutions like contemporary art museums or galleries often refuse to exhibit and contextualize communication guerrilla art projects. The deepness of that gap between the institutions and media art practice is emphasized in a statement by Friedrich Kittler, who teaches aesthetics and history of media at the Berlin Humboldt University. In his comment on the winners of the International Media Art Prize of the ZKM in 2001, where ‘Bit Plane’ won and he was on the jury, he demands for a computer art that eventually should drop the old concepts of the ‘oeuvre’ or and the ‘object’, be it a CD ROM or a video tape.
Evidently a large segment of media art and some parts of the contemporary visual art reject any labelling and ask strongly for a different treatment on both levels: sensual perception and intellectual analysis. Those content-heavy, often process-based and participatory projects that we have seen do not address the art sensorium like eyes and ears predominantly. This might be regarded as a weak point and to some degree I share this view. But the neglect of beauty and the overemphasis of the real and righteous is a current trend in art that is evident throughout all media.
Using technology for artistic purposes has broadened the playground and expanded the forms of artistic expression as well as the way of working creatively. The quantity of works with new media do not fit to ordinary and traditional concepts of art but ask for new ways of thinking, judging and understanding. This kind of artistic media practice takes place outside the museum mainly, and finds only a forum in bottom-up organisations like media art festivals or media labs and initiatives which still operate aside the main contemporary art scene.
These festivals, media art associations and exhibition spaces are ‘attention machines’ in their field, comparable to what contemporary art museums are for their audiences. Once a piece or project has accessed this platform successfully, the media art community notices and very often salvages the creative work. The media art system to some degree is still like a parallel world beside the ‘real’ art system that is more compatible to the market and the audience.
It should be asked whether guerrilla art projects are still effective if they don’t leave the media art ghetto. Projects like re-code.com or Minds of concern hit the public because they leave the art system and multiply its effect though press publishing.
Videos like Bit Plane or Video Hacking only function in the small ghetto of the media art system, thus reaching only a rather limited audience which is already critical and shares the views of their authors.
However, beside the variety of projects (and I’ve shown only parts) which might be summarized under the term of communication guerrilla and which may be labelled as art or not in the future, there is interesting creative artistic work with new media that waits to be discovered and experienced.