Here’s an interview with me in the Globe and Mail, mostly talking about the making of the documentary “Peep Culture”. I talk Peep, family, the future…anyway, check it out.
Really interesting piece in the Washington Post about Full Body Scanners, confessional culture, privacy and the decisions we make. I’m quoted as well, in the course of connecting our decision to go through a full body scanner or not to the rise of Peep Culture.
From the article:
More broadly, we have made peace with our confessional culture. If we are outwardly ambivalent that moments of deep personal anguish and light mundanity are processed into entertainment without much distinction on reality TV and YouTube, we nevertheless eagerly consume it all. We vote with links clicked and cookies accepted.
Even surveillance itself becomes titillation. As Hal Niedzviecki, a cultural commentator in Toronto and author of “The Peep Diaries,” points out, the evening news features surveillance camera footage of bungled convenience store robberies. Dash-cam arrest videos show up online. Niedzviecki calls the current state of things “peep culture.”
“Peep culture conditions us to want to use our privacy to achieve things,” says Niedzviecki, who suggests this breeds a kind of passivity, a failure to ask questions. “It’s not, ‘Oh, no, no, you can’t ask me to give this up.’ It’s, ‘Sure, you can have it, but what am I getting back?’”
In other words, we often feel we’re exercising control over what we give up. And we tend to focus on what we think we’re getting: security, social mobility, convenience, the validation of fellow Twitterati.
So, yes, the vast majority of us will continue to go through the full-body scanners. We will do it most of all because we hope the new technology makes us safer, but also because we’re in a rush, because we don’t want to make a fuss, because we don’t want to find out just how “enhanced” a pat-down can be, because we don’t even know what a full-body scanner is. We will do it because we’ve been inured to giving up things when we go to the airport, and it stinks, sure, but this is the price of flying in a scary age. We will do it because thinkingly or unthinkingly we have concluded this is a good bargain.
Some interesting thoughts in this piece with the main theme: “in the world of social media, nothing is real”.
Very refreshing to read something thoughtful that connects the various silo-ed categories media usually puts this stuff in. Which is to say that the writer, Denise Ryan, looks at a the doc-moc trend, and explores the way ‘networking’ is changing in the era of social media, and takes a snapshot of the big picture of Peep Culture.
All that plus commentary from yours truly and a shout out to my upcoming talk at Canzine West!
Here’s the article I wrote for the New York Times Magazine about my Failed Facebook party. Sad? So so so sad. I expand quite a bit on why people didn’t come to my party and what that says about social networking and Peep culture in the Peep book.
I’ll be doing a talk in St. Louis about the rise of Peep Culture and its implications on privacy, happening May 6th at 7 pm. Location: Schlafly Branch Library, St. Louis, 225 N. Euclid Ave. St. Louis, MO 63108.
This event is free and open to the public.
contact # for more information is 314 206 6779.
I’ll be doing a talk about the rise of Peep Culture on the
campus of University of Mary Washington which is in Richmond,
The talk is free and open the public and will be held at 7:30 pm,
Wed., March 31, in Jepson 100 on the campus of the University of
"From Pop to Peep: How We’re Learning to LoveWatching Ourselves and our Neighbors(in the age of reality television, Facebook,YouTube, Twitter and so much more!),"by Hal Niedzviecki,author of “The Peep Diaries:How We’re Learning to Love Watching Ourselvesand Our Neighbors”; sponsored by the departmentsof psychology, sociology and anthropology, andcomputer science, and CARC; Jepson Hall, Room 100;7:30 p.m.; free; (540) 654-1559.
I will be the keynote speaker and also be presenting a workshop at the Every Victim Matters: Understanding the Impact of CyberViolence on Youth Conference in April.
It’s being put on by the Saffron Centre, which offers therapy and assessment for young people dealing with all kinds of mental health issues.
For my keynote, I’ll be talking about Peep Culture and its potential relationship to cyberbullying. I’ll look at how easy it is for us to depersonalize other human beings in the course of using their lives for our entertainment, and how teens are particularly susceptible to becoming victims in the age of Peep.
For my workshop, I’ll explore strategies that I’ve used to introduce pop culture to young people and get them to think critically about how pop culture works and how they can ‘take back’ pop culture to make positive changes in their live and communities.
Here’s the archive audio file of me discussing Peep Culture and taking calls on Wisconsin Public Radio.
My final Peep event! It’s in Peterborough, Ontario as part of the great Cooked and Eaten Reading Series.
Here are the details.
Hal will be giving a multimedia presentation about the book which will be followed by what I expect to be a lively panel discussion including Hal, Professor Alison Hearn and web developer, Glenn Eve. Questions will centre around how this new culture is changing our world.
Hal Niedzviecki’s writing has appeared in newspapers, periodicals across North America including The New York Times Magazine, Playboy, Adbusters, the Utne Reader, the Globe and Mail, the National Post, Toronto Life, Walrus, and Geist. He is the author of many books including most recently The Peep Diaries: How We’re Learning to Love Watching Ourselves and Our Neighbors.
More Readings and Info at cookedandeaten.com
The Peep Diaries will be Published by City Lights Books in May 2009
City Lights Books
City Lights Publishers
In June of 1955, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, co-founder of City Lights Bookstore, launched City Lights Publications with the Pocket Poets Series. The first volume was a collection of his own poems, Pictures of the Gone World, which has since become a classic of beat literature and… more...
Hal Niedzviecki is a writer, culture commentator and editor whose work challenges preconceptions and confronts readers with the offenses of everyday life. He is the author of six books including the novel The Program and the nonfiction book The Peep Diaries: How We’re Learning to Love Watching Ourselves… more...