Intervention : Escaping from Digital World

by | Nov 10, 2017 | Artwork #3: Intervene

My intervention game name is “less digital product, more paper books”. I went to the cafe house and looked for some people who used phones or computers for long time and did not take a rest. I invited them to take part in my activity, put electronic equipment down, and read one passage to show they supported my ideas and activity. This activity is one intervention that interrupted people who were using phones or computers and reminded them of avoiding for depending on computers, phones or other electronics overly. For reading material, I chosen several paragraphs in one book “Mindset, The New Psychology of Success” and made participants to read. Because I wanted participants to read some materials about their mindset and had some thinking about their mindset. I think paper books is a good method for people to escaping from digital world, calming down, relaxing their minds and learning something they cannot obtain from digital world. Because the purpose of using electronics always represented people have busy work on computers, competitions in game, finish assignments and other tense and fast-paced activities. Few people can think deeply and calmly in digital world. Their goal is often finishing something instead of thinking about something when using computers and phones. Reading book is able to allow people to relax minds, especially for non-work-related books.

My ideas origins from several places. In the article “Spacewar” by Stewart Brand, when I read some sentences mentioned “computers, Threat or menace”, “computer technicians are out of their bodies, locked in life-of-death space combat”, “ruining their eyes, numbing their fingers” and so on. Although this article mainly described the Spacewar game, but I started to consider in our modern life, many people overusing and relying on computers or phones also ruined their eyes, numbed their fingers, even damaged bodies. I wanted to intervene this event for some people. Although I cannot prevent all people from it, I could intervene some people, reminded them, and expressed my opposed opinions to current situations about overusing computers and phones.

This intervention game is one challenge for us, because you need have courage to interrupt people using electronics, talk with them, invite them to read books and make them support this intervention. We also can invite more than one people to play this game. Players can compete with each other and winner who should invite most people to take part in this intervention. If several people invited the same number of people, they can compare lengths of reading paragraph in the book.

Furthermore, in the Jejune Institute Films, I saw people navigated some remote places and seek their spiritual destination that they cannot find in the fast-paced cities. Hence, using electronics for working, studying and doing other busy activities make people no time to involve in deep thought and relax their minds. Intervening them lived in digital world and utilized book to help people for returning back to the real world and think deeply.

Another idea of my intervention comes from the “Tactics vs Strategies” course. Because I learnt our intervention is one tactical practices in the society. It will critique some social phenomenons, interrupted something we do not want to see. All intervention tactics is one short term activity. And I found intervention is not stopping people from actions directly, rather than used a special way to remind people, made people avoid for taking part in negative events or something we thought terrible and need to be prevented. An innovative and special advocacy opposites something that caused negative effects to society is a successful intervention. This kind of intervention shows the tactics and skills, like some Anti-War Game, non-violent protest, and so on. So, my intervention is not stopping people from using electronics directly, I used book and my ideas to remind them and help them to escape from digital world. I believed people are more willing to accept my ideas through this tactical way. The experience in my video proved it.