Personal Collection

In my intervention I imagined a world in which digital objects had the same kind of aura as physical objects. A beloved digital video could collect same scrapes, fingerprints, and notes in the margins just like a treasured book handed down generations.

I created a persona, and decided to compile this person's imagined collection of digital possessions, with all the scratches and individualities that let the person recognize them as their own. I use video editing tools to alter the works in the person's collection in ways that I thought would translate the uniqueness of particular physical objects to a digital video space. Then I annotate the videos with the description that the person might write to explain their meaning to them.

My goal with this intervention was to explore notions of ownership in digital spaces. I want the absurdity of shoving how we think about owning things in the physical world on to the digital world to come through, but I also want to imagine a different relationship to digital things than we tend to live with.

I chose YouTube because issues of copyright on digital platforms play out a lot on YouTube, and copyright is the main lens through which we see ownership of digital things. The videos I posted to YouTube were immediately flagged by automated copyright bots and made unavailable. I'd like to see how to get past the bots in the future to better realize the project.

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