Notes in the absence of Camp
seeing like the number of “joke” dating sim game announcements yesterday + also having to wade thru bad art in process of curating a media festival lately has made me think… I’m really tired of this thing I’ll call like, “Internet/New Media Drag”
And like, I think the unifying thread behind “joke” dating sims, and boring new media art about the novelty of using instagram or snapchat filters or whatever other thing teen girls have been adeptly adopting for at least 2–3 years and usually male-fronted bands or fashion lines using “twee” geocities site, anime pants and fanart covered binder, enamel pins and patches everywhere aesthetics as like a funny novelty is that they’re all about like, the ridiculousness of taking something women have primarily worked on and enjoyed and built communities around seriously. Even just guys who think they’re being funny slipping into the sort of teen beauty vlogger voice and mannerisms… I feel like this is a sort of male insecurity about being on the edge of realizing that most of the idiosyncratic and fun and friendly ways of using technology and the internet are set by women and communities associated with “girl stuff”…
Facebook which originated as a way to numerically rate women on attractiveness has now become this miserable to use cancerous growth organizing how the rest of the web works by power of presence alone like some kind of particularly annoying form of ice nine, no one really wants any of this but feel like they can’t get away from it, similarly apps like uber and so on where the come in, disrupt existing local infrastructure and social organization, until, well, shrug, you just have to use it now. Like please, give me years and years more of anime webrings and ugly angelfire pages instead of this.
And all they can do is riff upon how goofy this stuff is (while appropriating it to boost their careers ofc) and how ridiculous it is for a man/valuable brand/serious videogame studio to act like this. And in the end they’re just taking these forms and incorporating them into the uber mode of interfacing with the world which is posing as friendly sharing but in reality just draining resources and funneling the benefits upwards to tech bros who can’t even throw a decent orgy with a billion dollars and a gigantic mansion
drag or even broader forms of gender nonconformity on one’s own body is performance unmediated by the anonymity of a branded account or the special category of autonomy of the leech male genius artist, because you’re putting your self on the line the relation to mainstream gender norms is challenging and expansive while techbro new media drag only uses dystopian technologies to further lock down gender norms and the associated hierarchy via derision: thesis