Error Reading Response

Mark Nunes’ introduction Error, Noise, and Potential: The Outside of Purpose discusses the relationship between control, feedback, error, and noise. Nunes explores the potential the occurrence error has for providing opportunities outside of systems of control or predicted outcomes. Control is connected with purpose and is used to describe the way in which actions are guided toward intended purposes. In today’s technological climate, the intended purpose is increasingly maximized performance, thus eradicating error. Nunes posits questions about deviance and inefficiency in this system as forms of resistance.

The relationships Nunes explores in this introduction reminded me very much of models of communication and various communication theories. In the beginning of the chapter, Nunes uses examples of feedback in technology as first discussed by Weiner to discuss error’s corrective purpose as a means of preventing unexpected outcomes. From an interpersonal communicative perspective, feedback, in answer to the questions posed at the end of the ‘Control’ section, provides a multitude of opportunities for “unintended trajectories” in interactions and therefore a varying potential for relationship growth or decline. Feedback in any communicative capacity, if negative and deviating from the norm, still provides valuable information and can be a major mode of resistance.

The Subversive Use of Theory speaks more generally about the concepts Nunes discusses. Zizek argues for greater questioning in fields of study so as to broaden scopes of solutions and thinking to better connect people and solve socio-ecological issues.

Both articles discuss potential of error and deviation from norms as a way to expand thought and everyday possibilities.

Blog 1 – Glitch and Error!

Mark Nunes argues that error in a digital global network world provides a critical lens for understanding this technological landscape, something so technical, error is a deviation without purpose, an opportunity for artistic potential in a system focused on maximizing performance, efficiency, accuracy. To have this consistency, we need control in order to continue to achieve a predetermined outcome. Nunes mentions Deleuze discussion of error as a deviation that “does not coordinate with orthodox image of thought as a recognition of truth.”If so, is error the “counterculture” against the status quo? Nunes argues that although global networks is democratizing, it is only so to those who possess the privilege to do so (dependent on the extension of cables), which would result in more alienation between developed and developing nations. What is fascinating is that error can be taken advantage of, serving some sort of purpose, be it political, social, etc, and how quickly the networks go to “fix” this error, or leave it in. Some examples I can think of is using an extension to allow users to access Netflix library of different countries. Netflix recently corrected this issue. In a sense, copyrighted media is still legally restricted regionally. Another example is of a video game, Elder Scrolls: Skyrim, in which there is a glitch which allowed horses to climb steep mountains. Bethesda, the game developer, took notice of this glitch but chose to let it be. Error also allows for a convergence culture, of consumers engaging directly with media, via exploiting any loophole to produce a unpredictable response. This may involve highjacking airwaves, hacking into websites, revealing data. This would result in the further regulation of the internet, as error becomes more of a nuisance, endangering the democracy of media.


Zizek criticizes modern education as being commercialized and as a tool used by capitalist societies to “fix problems”, to further perpetuate their ideology. they call “Private use of reason”. Using education to further one’s own position, a “confirmation bias”. Education is not about “how to fix” but has layers to it, trying to approach a concept from a more theoretical and transnational perspective. Most important thing for education is the ability to “build bridges” between the spectator and the reality of the situation, which will allow an understanding that is beyond surface level.


Menkmen- Technology is rapidly advancing towards perfection, and those who can’t (financially) keep up become obsolete, disconnected from the world. This is an interesting idea applying to both technology and even people. Older generations are very disconnected from the millenials due to their general inability to participate in global networking, stores that opt for phone numbers and fliers over emails and websites will simply not be able to keep up. This is not the main point of Menkmen’s manifesto, but this is what came up in my head. Anyways, With control, there must be chaos. This chaos is noise, defined by Menkmen as a term with a negative connotation, an unwanted disturbance, with a positive connotation to redefine the opposite. This glitch as a break from a flow of expectation provides opportunity for alternative mode of creative representation, a nonconforming countercultural approach to media. This provides an opportunity for metaphorical expression. As one medium advances, it becomes domesticated, straying far from its intended meaning, a criticism I hear often about modern art today. Once a postmodern critique and a deconstruction of the elitism of “high art”, it has become what once demonized.