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Teaching and Learning Multimodal Communications

Alyssa Arbuckle, Alison Hedley, Shaun Macpherson, Alyssa McLeod, Jana Millar Usiskin, Daniel Powell, Jentery Sayers, Emily Smith, Michael Stevens, Authors

This comment was written by Alyssa McLeod on 28 Aug 2012.

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Accidental Collaborators

While writing this analysis of Bjørn Magnhildøen's "Plaintext Performance," I found myself grasping for the appropriate terms. Should I refer to this piece as "e-lit," or as new media art? Should I describe the piece's audience as readers, viewers, or both? Does the piece as it exists online qualify as a performance, or is simply a recording of Magnhildøen's original, "autographic" performance at the Center for Literary Computing in 2006?

These terminology problems address the larger issue of the relationship between people and the technology they use, something "Plaintext Performance" illustrates through its oddly jarring blend of automated movement and interactivity. Are we passive receivers of information, or do we collaborate with the programs we use to create art, scholarly analysis, or videos on our computers? This exercise in granulating e-lit made me reflect on the workflow assignment we completed in the second week of class. I do not have as much control over my own work as I might think.

Author: Alyssa McLeod
Word Count: 161
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"Plaintext Performance" by Bjørn Magnhildøen (28 August 2012)
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