peter polack

“Wile we continue to think of algorithmic media like regulatory protocols, a more generative analogy might be found in interactive media, especially from the horror genre. The uncanny fluctuations of the “hypernudge” – sending you push notifications at relevant times based on your data – express less a “regulation by design” than what the developers of Amnesia: The Dark Descent realized about horror: it’s much more effective to send vague signals to someone based on their behavior, than to control their behavior outright. Enemies should affect the semiotic environment, but if they control behavior directly, it ruins the sense of fear that they can evoke. We should take care to recognize that this is something different than a procedural rhetoric, which uses a sequence of rules to construct an argument that appeals to logos or pathos. It is something much more direct, even viseral: a procedural horror where the medium is less a message than a sense of dread.”


Egrecorp is a simulation of a digital society, which is based on codes of law that can be edited by anyone. But as horrific algorithmic agencies and illicit code blocks threaten the stability of its governance systems, Egrecorp’s ambition to think political organization in terms of code is haunted by a demand to police its paranormal manifestations.