Machine Listening is a new investigation and experiment in collective learning, instigated by artist Sean Dockray, legal scholar James Parker, and curator Joel Stern for Liquid Architecture and launched at Unsound 2020: Intermission.
Across three days at the start of October, the symposium will investigate the implications of the coming world of listening machines in both its dystopian and utopian dimensions. Comprising a montage of presentations, performance, sound, video, music and experiments in listening featuring contributors from around the world, the online gatherings are divided into three sections, open to all:
Fri, 02. October: (Against) the coming world of listening machines
Sat, 03. October: Lessons in how (not) to be heard
Sun, 04. October: topic⁄Listening with the pandemic
Machine Listening is an evolving resource, comprising existing and newly commissioned writing, interviews, music and artworks. As the project grows, the curriculum will too.
Amidst oppressive and extractive forms of state and corporate listening, practices of collaborative study, experimentation and resistance will enable us to develop strategies for recalibrating our relationships to machine listening, whether through technological interventions, alternative infrastructures, new behaviors, or political demands. With so many cultural producers – whose work and research is crucial for this kind of project – thrown into deeper precarity and an uncertain future by the unfolding pandemic, we also hope that this curriculum will operate as a quasi-institution: a site of collective learning about and mobilisation against the coming world of listening machines.
A curriculum is also a technology, a tool for supporting and activating learning. And this one is open source. It has been built on a platform developed by www⁄Pirate Care for their own experiments in open pedagogy. We encourage everyone to freely use it to learn and organise processes of learning and to freely adapt, rewrite and expand it to reflect their own experience and serve their own pedagogies.