RE: [-empyre-] Size matters?


What an interesting reaction to the FACES name. It also it shows that subscribers and participants probably don't read the introductory information all that thinks. There is a bit of this history on the site, click on history. Of course, everyone has their own style of participation, and what it may or may not have provided in the way of inspiration, connection to the media community, or information. Some have been transient subscribers, coming and going with new email addresses -- others have saved every mail on their hard drives like collectors of precious memories.

Of course the list has changed over the years, it has developed into what it is -- not what we decided it should be. We intentionally stayed very non-dominant, and although I put up a very crude website in 1998, it was just giving links to women's projects (mostly links from postings that had been collected -- by me -- over the years). It quickly went out of date, and many domains changed with the availability of new domain name possibilities in the late 90s early 00s. Still, there was a kernel of the widespread activity taking place internationally with female direction, that was still pretty new information at the time.

In reference to the list in Manchester (and the group that meets up here -- btw it's still even a cc list!!) I have a feeling it is because there are so many 'foreigners' living here -- ie: non British. It was in part desperation to have social contact outside of traditional family contacts (we don't have 'em here) which many of the local women are very committed to maintain. We are in no way trying to break down tradition, but it seems to be something 'new' and 'exciting' and we have a lot of fun, too. What is pretty regular 'intellectual' social activity (rather than pub crawls) among female friends in LA, New York or Berlin just doesn't seem to exist here in Manchester.

I suppose we all take a little bit of our lives with us where ever we go, and on which ever list we inhabit (quietly or noisily).


At 09:01 AM 8/12/04 +0100, you wrote:
Hey Kathy,

I might have to discuss this with you on the ferry, I live outside London,
Hertfordshire, and on a practical level it would be interesting to see if
any of the folks out here could be hooked up in a similar way. I doubt it, I
have looked for arts groups online and only come up with contact details for
retired hobbyists, which I of course have nothing against, I could use some
crocheting lessons right now, but I don't think they would be so interested
in what I am involved with! ;-)

I have been interested in you discussing the 'personal' origins of Faces
because when it was discussed recently on the list that ISEA attendees
should wear badges/buttons I was confused. It seemed like a comment on
lurkers and I wondered if I didn't wear one, if I could physically lurk and
what everyone would think if they found out! ;-) But hearing more of the
premise of Faces, it makes mores sense, although I wonder if you feel Faces
still has this inclusive, 'meeting in person' potential in quite the same
way? If I pondered lurking will others? Don't get me wrong, I am looking
forward to meeting Faces at ISEA, but I am just wondering if and how you
think the group and its potentials are changing.

It also helps explain the name, which has also confused me as it made me
think of women's faces on glossy magazines and I wondered if it sounded like
we thought that's what we were going to be in the New Media arts realm
too...just heads full of ideas...just faces. And as an
integral part of Faces is faceless, it seemed strange to place emphasis on
this aspect. Now I am seeing that this is more of the point, to place
emphasis on real world meetings, so I guess I should just say see you in a
few days, with or without a badge, but certainly with a face (although I did
just watch a documentary on people who had lost their faces in accidents and
the immanence of face transplant surgery, and having recently smashed my
face up in an accident, even the thought of having a face right now troubles
me! ;-)


-----Original Message-----
[] On Behalf Of kathy rae
Sent: 12 August 2004 07:34
To: soft_skinned_space
Subject: Re: [-empyre-] Size matters?

Charlotte, Peter et al,

Just to keep my toes in the water here -- the experience of growing FACES
has been very specific but has some reflection points vis a vis this
discussion.  The FACES list initiallty grew from personal meetings between
women (no advertising or solicitation was ever made).  Then, the list
subscribers passed information to their friends and associates -- etc. --
and events were organised on the list, and then by list members themselves
(with no moderators involved -- which we thought was really great btw).  It
was all about personal connections. So, as you say, at first (back in the
days when there were not 'so many' lists that connected people
internationally on the topic of net and new media stuff) it was definately
more chatty and personal among the women who knew each other.  When a new
person subscribed, we always posted a bio and asked them to introduce
themselves (much as in a normal social situation).  When no bio was
submitted, with very few exceptions, the woman was not subscribed.

When the list grew to include many different language groups, we became
aware of smaller lists springing up among women in various goegraphic
locations -- these might have started up on their own anyway, especially
since they became easier to manage without being a sysop -- but it also
seems that communicating freely in one's language is very attractive.  Also,
let's be honest, we all have our local/specific interests to explore (in
addition to complex net and art theory) that may be considered too esoteric
(and may I say insignificant) for a larger - more international discussion

As an example, here in Manchester, we have just this year started up a list
among women who are involved in art, cinema, and education.  It is pretty
specific -- to connect and inform each other to interesting events and to
meet together from time to time.  It started with a huge get
together/dinner, and it continues to work as a friendly association that is
much appreciated!  I didn't start this up, btw, but I participate and enjoy
it.  There are approx.  25 women participating now (and more and more ask to
be included).


At 23:47 11/08/2004 +0200, you wrote:
>Charlotte Frost wrote:
>>I have witnessed this too, and some of the lists I read most tend to
>>be the smaller ones. I also find that the archives of some of the
>>bigger lists are very difficult to search. I find nettime a pain to
>>find stuff on and I know others do too, which is really annoying
>>because I wasn't online during some of the debates most relevant to my
>>research, and I can't sit around waiting for them to published in books
now can I?!
>>When there is no archive, they become more like Left Bank Coffee
>>Houses etc and this is a very interesting arena in itself, perhaps
>>where just having the discussions and conversations is what
>>counts...and laying testament occurs in the art works or outcomes of such
>>Do you find these lists more fruitful for the production of work? Do
>>they foster workable collaborations?
>My personal experience is that lists where you know a lot of people in
>person make you easier respond to things. What I do however think is
>that on (small) closed lists you easier drop personal ideas and
>opinions, but also more banal things like gossip or questions that seem
>to be to stupid to ask on bigger lists with archives, they are just
>more intimate. To get to your question if they are more fruitful for
>the production of work, I think in some sense they are, because you can
>ask questions (as for example programming related) you probably wouldn't
ask on the bigger list.
>If you ask me if they foster workable collaborations my experience is
>that they have more chance in contributing to this than the larger lists.
>empyre forum

empyre forum

empyre forum

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