Naked on Pluto

Door: Marloes de Valk, Aymeric Mansoux, Dave Griffiths

Naked on Pluto is a multiplayer text adventure created in 2010 by Dave Griffiths, Aymeric Mansoux and Marloes de Valk that uses data available on Facebook. Naked on Pluto presents a playful yet disturbing online game world of a city under the rule of ‘Elastic Versailles revision 14 (EVr14)’. EVr14 operates through the idiosyncratic logic of 57 AI bots that scavenge Facebook data from the players of the game. Issuing a constant stream of provocations to click, declare, poke and buy, the bots create chaos with one’s personal and one’s friends’ data. Familiar faces and information from different profiles blend together, suggesting an evanescent landscape that, like the original Versailles, is designed for promotional parades of inseparable personal and ideological attributes. The players’ only way to override the game’s restrictions is by teaming up to finally crash and escape from the confines of EVr14. Mimicking the proliferation of invisible bots that scrape and cunningly re-use data for other (commercial) purposes on social networks, Naked on Pluto explores and exposes the hidden mechanisms of social networks.”

“The artists … envisioned creating a work that may not directly solve any privacy issues, but makes them more tangible. They opted for the medium of an online game as it inspires understanding through experience rather than explanation. A game actively engages viewers in a story, and has the potential of helping them discover first-hand what is going on behind the façade of companies “helping people to connect each other.””