The Tactics of Interference

Most of these seven videos advocate resistance to mainstream authority and culture in humorous and inventive ways. BLO Nightly News (1994) concerns the “Barbie Liberation Organization,” which placed hundreds of altered dolls (Barbies talking with GI Joe's voice and vice versa) in retail stores; the critique of gender roles is amusing, but director Igor Vamos's reliance on a commercial TV-news format strands the viewer in a passive position. Guerrilla News Network's Copwatch (2002) shows activists policing the police by taping them on the job. The most interesting video is Contestational Robotics & Streetwriter (2001) by Institute of Applied Autonomy, a group that builds sophisticated devices to create new forms of publishing, including one robot that distributes subversive literature by “capitalizing on the aesthetics of cuteness” and another that spray paints messages on streets. 95 min.

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