Online Intervention

For my “Online Intervention”, I explored the power of communication. I have always been interested in talking to new people, but I always had a hard time having face-to-face conversations. So, in order to meet new people and fulfill my interests, I chose texting as a way of communicating since it doesn’t necessarily require a face-to-face conversation. Going through with this idea, I imagined unwanted responses, ignorance, and cruelty. There have been multiple times where I’ve gotten text messages from strangers, yet not once have I talked to them because I thought it was strange to talk to someone you don’t know especially when you don’t know their intentions. Through this process I wanted to see if I would get the same reactions from others, whether or not they knew my intentions. My intentions throughout this process weren’t meant to be bad or “creepy”, as I am a college student trying to explore new ideas and concepts in the art world.

To start this process, I listed forty to fifty different random numbers with different area codes and started to text people throughout a five-day period. Then I waited for responses. I texted exactly forty-two different random numbers (from the list) pretending to be someone else and occasionally myself. I only got eleven responses; those conversations lasted from one minute to 1.5 hours. I figured out that most of these respondents had their read receipts on, which meant I could see whether or not they saw it or not, but two out of the twenty-three people read the text and chose to ignore. There are currently only twenty-three different texts that I have presented which means nineteen of the other texts aren’t. The reason to that is: ten of the text messages were sent to unknown or nonexistent numbers which I got a text immediately after claiming that those numbers did not exist and the other nine people I texted responded with threats, gruesome words, or private information about themselves which I chose not to upload. Through this process, I asked their age and their gender and found out it was a one to one ratio for the gender, but most of the people that responded were seventeen and younger, along with one thirty-year old man. There were a variety of responses ranging from: anger, to interests, to curiosity, to hatred. Two of the respondents did “block” me so I wouldn’t be able to contact them again. There was one unexpected connection that was made through this process, one respondent seemed to be very keen and interested so we eventually exchanged our Instagram’s and I also explained to her about this project and she was really excited to be a part of it. It was never a part of the plan to explain my intentions, but it was a good experiment to be upfront and to see the respondent’s reactions. In conclusion, I see this project to be an accomplishment to my interests and it was very surprising to see the results.

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