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The future never comes looking like it used to. Science fiction's universal hallmark of technological advancement was the videophone. While you can buy a device as slick as a Gene Roddenberry prop, most people make video calls with the same thing they do a thousand other things with, using a streamlined version of the computer-camera-modem combo that Jennifer Ringley set up in her dorm room in 1996. Her site JenniCam (now archived) did not stream a live feed of her life. It updated still images— black-and-white, at first— every three minutes. Traffic leapt whenever word spread that Ringley was undressing, or having sex with her boyfriend. But JenniCam was never meant to be an illicit site. As Ringley explained, she was broadcasting everyday life, and in everyday life sex and nudity happen. Her webcam was like a piece of furniture, a mirror that blankly took in the image of the room it faced. It was connected to the line of the telephone, a device that philosopher Avital Ronnell has described as a superhumanizing prosthesis, a machine that empowers the ear and voice to operate across great distances. The webcam's mirror/telephone hybrid— as used by JenniCam and its lifecasting progeny, from to Chatroulette— is a messy sort of videophone that captures a reflection at its physical location and disperses it to whatever channel that switches the packets.

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Misnomer Dance Live Webcast

This Friday, we'll be streaming Misnomer Dance's new work, Time Lapse, live from the Joyce Soho. We hope you'll join us for a great night, a lively chat, and fantastic art.


We're also accepting submissions for video works to show during intermission and before the show. If you have work you'd like to screen, get in touch. Leave a comment or shoot me an email! We're featured on the homepage so it'll surely be a great event. 


It starts at 7:30 PM EST / 12:30 am GMT.



Related press :

The New Yorker

Technology in the Arts Blog

Livestream homepage


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