Distinguished media futurist and Pratt Institute Professor appointed as GazeCoin advisor

Professor Jonathan Beller from Pratt Institute NY

GazeCoin has invited Professor Jonathan Beller from Pratt Institute NY, one of the pre-eminent theorists of the attention economy (which he derived pre-internet from cinema in a set of essays published beginning in the early 1990s that were collected and revised in The Cinematic Mode of Production: Attention Economy and the Society of the Spectacle), to be an advisor for the project.

GazeCoin, the blockchain crypto-currency ‘attention’ token that provides a scalable monetization solution for VR & AR, has launched it’s proof of concept world complete with a functional ‘gaze analytics’ system that shows how audiences generate ‘GazeCoin’ transactions simply be engaging with content.

Beller has accepted this role stating that “GazeCoin is building the most nuanced tracking systems for attentional labor ever conceived. In a way you are concretizing and rendering tunable a set of scopic relations that have been emerging in visual technologies for decades. These aspects of vision and visuality as they relate to financialization are at the core of my research and analysis. GazeCoin feels inevitable and will very likely make history.”

Beller added “I believe that new economic forms are necessary to return agency in a fully financialized world to value producers (those who used to be called workers and slaves and later morphed into audiences — without really eliminating those other types of servitude). My intellectual interest here with GazeCoin is in the technical and conceptual advances related to the valuation of visual participation, and my political interest here is in advocating for the generally disenfranchised constituency of value producers as you develop that technology.”
‘Gaze’ is calculated through a quite complex algorithm that measures things like ‘hang time’, fixations, repeat fixations and even levels of excitement. Audiences can also earn bonuses from advertisers based on repeat visits and what they chose to do first.

ABOUT Professor Jonathan Beller

Professor Jonathan Beller is a film theorist, culture critic and mediologist. He currently holds the position of Professor of Humanities and Media Studies and Critical and Visual Studies, Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, NY. He is the recipient of numerous awards and fellowships including Mellon, J.P. Getty and Fulbright Foundation grants and honours.
He has developed an analysis of what new media futurists call the “attention economy” within a Marxist approach to production that forefronts looking as labor. “To look is to labor”: not only does the television (or radio) audience produce itself as a commodity to be vended by broadcasters to advertisers, but watching image-commodities is value-creating labour on those commodities, the looked-at commodity being the mechanism by which surplus value (the value created by the spectators above that which is returned to them — as services, pleasures — in a kind of barter) is extracted by the capitalist.

ABOUT Pratt Institute

Pratt Institute is a private, nonsectarian, non-profit institution of higher learning located in New York, United States. Comprising six schools, the Institute is primarily known for its highly ranked programs in architecture, interior design, and industrial design, and offers both undergraduate and Master’s degree programs in a variety of fields, with a strong focus on research.


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The GazeCoin Team