This project is about hacking a system. Systems are in place in every aspect of our lives and I feel the system of mass communication is something that is heavily abused by the very few who control it. Through hacking this system I wanted to communicate my personal opinion on how I feel this system is wrong. This work targets newspaper headlines and the sensationalist nature that surrounds them.
I find it appalling at the language and topics that newspapers print as their headlines. The problem I have is that they are not impartial and that they are, for most individuals, their main source of news. We walk past these headlines every day to and from work and whether we know it or not, we are being influenced by them.
The aim of this hack was to attempt to raise awareness at the inappropriate language that is sometimes used in headlines, all in the effort to capture our attention and make us pick up a copy or even pay for one. I wanted my hack to have a direct intervention with these sensationalised headlines. The idea was to create an oversized paperweight (weighing approx 50kg) that would stop commuters from being able to pick up the newspaper.
The material and shape of the sculpture was made for a number of reasons. Firstly I needed a large, heavy object that I could place on a pile of newspapers. Secondly the paperweight would have a word that I often see in headlines; ‘Foreign’. This word is often attached with negative connotations and I wanted to counteract this by showing a more empathetic viewpoint of the word ‘Foreign’ with the word ‘human’ that newspaper could use (if they didn’t have certain agendas). The message I am trying to get across is that we are all human, the separation of water does not somehow alter our DNA nor make us more superior. Everyone on this earth should be treated equal. If we trace our own family trees back far enough we will all eventually find someone who is ‘foreign’.
This message could not be more important in current times where there is mass migration from war torn countries and countries in the west, especially the UK are hesitant to provide more assistance.