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The image tyranny

The open-ness of image production has shifted the construction of meanings from, mainly a government sphere, to a decentralised social space production. All of these interventions in the cultural space (meaning creating space) can still be guided to support specific power structures. There is nothing wrong with letting image creation run free, but are there those who are purposefully making use of these tools to foster their visions?

Undoubtedly, yes. Multiple corporations, mainly, push forth their visual agenda through social media as well as traditional one. The ordering of aesthetics through simple Instagram production techniques has effects on meaning creations and of what is acceptable socially. Although perhaps, the objective of these corporations is to maximise their company’s revenue, the content or the specific use of users that promote particular values, have effects on overall social creation. In this sense, if one chooses certain actors that have poor regard for social cohesion, or at least necessary understandings of social inclusion, their image production shall be tainted by these missing elements.

The issue is not whether this is good or not; it is what it is. The question for me relies on two fronts, on the one hand, government intervention to purport specific societal values and on the other hand, how to continue to foster individual expression of values without them becoming damaging to social cohesion. Or, perhaps, do we want tolerant societies anymore?

January 2020
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