Internet as Playground and Factory

Jeff Crouse


Jeff Crouse makes playful parodies commenting on the role of technology in our lives. His work takes many forms, including software, web applications, installations, games, and video. His piece Invisible Threads, a mixed reality installation about virtual labor, was featured at the New Frontiers Gallery at the Sundance Film Festival in 2007. James Chimpton, a robotic monkey, interviewed the artists of the 2008 Whitney Biennial using information harvested from the web in real time. Another piece, Dirt Party, made people at the 2008 Futuresonic Festival in Manchester confront their online identities by crowdsourcing the task of digging up "dirt" about them from the Internet. His work has also been shown at the DC FilmFest, the Come Out and Play Festival in Amsterdam, Laboral in Gíjon, Spain, the Obie Awards, and the Eyebeam Art & Technology Center in New York. He has received grants from Rhizome and Turbulence, and is has been a fellow at Eyebeam since 2007. BS, Individualized Study, New York University; MS, Digital Media, Georgia Tech. Crouse joins the Bennington faculty in Computing in the fall of 2009.


I will be talking about a few projects of mine that use Internet labor, including Invisible Threads, a virtual online sweatshop, Crowded, a radio show produced by Mechanical Turk workers, Dirt Party, where personal information about party-goers is gathered by online workers to create a live visual presentation, and You3b, a community site for the creation of YouTube triptychs.