The World Through a Webcam : Backroom

  • Felicity Morris

The digital communications platform Zoom was originally developed to host business conference calls. Propelled by the ongoing pandemic, Zoom became a medium for digital classrooms, parties, sessions of parliament and virtual orgies, hosting wedding ceremonies and death sentencing by courts of law. Zoom’s success will become synonymous with the COVID-19 pandemic. While the company has propelled forward, privacy concerns regarding the selling and leaking of data as well as attention and app tracking for ad usage grew. Several governments and companies banned the platform and initiated lawsuits. The company has been linked to the FBI and the Chinese secret service. Yet, Zoom’s licit and illicit actions remain unknown to the public. In the past months, as a sudden need for digitisation drastically pushed user numbers, news outlets and online feeds have reported on Zoom. This is the material that the World Through a Webcam is based on. The World Through a Webcam gives access to ‘Backroom’, a hyper-real mock conference call platform which guides the user through a series of security questions which expose infrastructures and current issues around privacy and data security to highlight the ‘new normal’ of the commodification of the digital realm emerging from this pandemic. Art Direction, Research & Development: Felicity Morris Web Development: Soyun Park, Berk Özdemir Graphic Design: Tereza Nováková Sound Design: Kirsten Spruit Proofing: Eva Jack