Članci IN MEDIAS RES br. 15

VIII Uz osmi simpozij Filozofija medija (2018)




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Pregledni članak
Review article
Primljeno: 04.12.2018.



Jure Vujić

Institut za geopolitiku i strateško istraživanje, Zagreb
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Geopolitics of Numerical Space and the Rule of Algorithms

Puni tekst: pdf (881 KB), English, Str. 2315 - 2332





The numerical media can simulate all the details of other media by accumulating all the previous classical media functions (television, typewriter, etc.) and acting in this direction they captured so far unprecedented spaces of representation and expression. Due to such capacity for digital programming through modular structures of all the previous functions of the classical mass media, the numerical media succeed through the network reconfiguration and cultural transcoding in presenting a retrospective picture of the world and culture in the history of mankind. Inter-connectivity between the numerical media and internet networks implies a planetary virtual network that some compare with “the world’s collective cortex”. However, given the increasing density and complexity, the numerical media have become more hermetical and more complex in their deep functioning. The gradual autonomy and emancipation of its creators and operators opens the process of creating a mysterious artificial intelligence as an introduction to the new reign of algorithms. It is an introduction to the new virtual geopolitics of cyberspace where the strategies of conquest and the monopoly over information become the rival space of power between official government actors and other asymmetric actors.


Key words: numerical, the media, geopolitics, cables, attention, economy, totalitarianism, disruption.



By definition, digital geopolitics studies the cumulative and deep impact of information networks and new telecommunications on international relations and behaviour of the corporate sector and the individual. Modern digitalisation of the society is the result of a long process of successive technoscientific and economic revolutions. The first industrial revolution started in the 18th century with the invention of the steam engine and the transition from hand production methods to machines replacing humans. The second industrial revolution in the 19th century and the first half of the 20th century was marked by the use of different energy products and many scientific and technological inventions such as oil and electricity. The third industrial revolution of the present day is marked by computerisation and the use of information-communication systems often for the purpose of automation of work production and other processes. The fourth, numerical revolution, is characterised by networking instigated by the emergence of the internet, the network of networks, networking broad areas such as robotics, big data analysis and artificial intelligence. In that context, any contemplation of numerical geopolitics should be done by looking into the Structure of Scientific Revolutions, the most important work by the American physicist, philosopher and historian Thomas Samuel Kuhn (1922 – 1996)[1]. Kuhn introduced a completely new understanding of scientific development – the history of science, which, according to him, is not only about the accumulation of knowledge but about a line of paradigm shifts, “takes on the world” which define research traditions of individual scientific communities.


Main components of the global cyberspace

Cyberspace is a semantic contraction of the words cybernetics and space. It is a new virtual space deriving from the interconnection between different information and telecommunication networks. However, despite its being a result of different superimposed layers, the hard-layer (material layer) and the soft layer (artificial intelligence), it is often forgotten that that space has a layer composed of a group of internauts and internet users interacting through social network platforms. The interaction between these three layers reflects the vastness and strategic significance of the digitalised world. Namely, despite the myth of de-materialisation of the numerical economy and cyberspace network, one should always bear in mind the fact that on a global level submarine cables make up and provide for 99% of intercontinental telecommunications and account for USD 10 000 billion of day-to-day financial web-based operations. The hard layer of the cyberspace means the infrastructure and materials needed for the delivery and storage of information and internet functioning. The soft layer (artificial intelligence) of the cyberspace consists of a group of control and command protocols and information applications needed for the functioning of networks' “supra networks”, exploitation systems (Windows, Linux, etc.), the semantic layer (cognitive) of the cyberspace as a group of users interacting through interfaces, networks, etc.


Material component of numerical geopolitics: submarine cable networks

Numerical routes have become a global issue. Land routes helped the Roman Empire to achieve supremacy. Sea routes were the backbone of the British Empire in the 18th and 19th centuries. Digital routes have a growing geopolitical significance, particularly because of strategic control over telecommunication internet routes and because of the military and security aspects of the potential risk of cyberterrorism and cyberattacks. The historical role of the telegraph cables of the 19th century as predecessors of numerical cables is evolving towards a gradual development and intertwining of a mega network of numerical submarine cables. The United States of America plays a dominant role in international numerical networks. Almost all transatlantic and particularly transpacific cables converge in the United States. With the exception of Canada and Brazil, almost all American countries of the Southern hemisphere indirectly depend on the United States for numerical cables and it is therefore not surprising that geopolitologists[2] speak of the survival of the Monroe doctrine in the area of numerical dependence. China, Japan and Singapore have the broadest node networks for transpacific communications. Australia is home to Oceania’s digital network. Africa and the Middle East “depend” on India, Egypt, Spain and France for the transfer of digital data through submarine cables. In Europe, Great Britain is the key point for digital flows to the United States. Worth noting is Russia's small role in this geography of submarine cables, however, the country is an important digital land bridge, connecting Europe and Asia. There are currently no geopolitical tensions over the control of submarine cables and, with the exception of Europe and Asia, most major intercontinental routes are used in less than one third of their capacity (of which three quarters through the internet). It should be noted that in the case of conflict, some countries may find it easier than others to isolate its numerical opponent. The location of numerical cables and their transit significance are an issue of geopolitical power since they digitally supply users in a number of countries on the global level. Numerical cables are not a sufficient indicator of digital power although their routes often follow strategic maritime, land or energy routes. In addition to submarine numerical cables, worth noting is the geopolitical significance of satellite telecommunication capabilities and DNS locations, and the major role played by the United States in these areas.

The numerical space nevertheless depends on network cables, which are open to security threats, pose large geostrategic and economic challenges and security risks and threats and raise strategic issues associated with these actual pipelines of the digital economy. It is clear therefore that the paradigm of the virtualisation of the global and internet space notwithstanding, the internet does rely after all on material components in the form of submarine and land infrastructure. Information society requires the infrastructure, servers, computers, mobile phones, satellites, and particularly cables as key numerical arteries. Each year, TeleGeography, an American telecommunications market research firm, issues a new world map of submarine cables. In 2018, there were 428 submarine cables, of total length of over 1.1 million kilometres. As an actual material basis for the internet, submarine cables have become the main problem of information globalisation.


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Figure: submarine cables Source: Submarine Cable Map, TeleGeography,


The phenomenon of the numerical world should be viewed from three complementary and explicative aspects[3]: from a geohistorical aspect, fast development of communication networks in the past century: access to the globalisation of information has increased considerably owing to cross-ocean numerical networks; from a geoeconomic aspect: to identify economic and financial issues, particularly through a form of fierce competition as well as the necessary alliances between countries and operators; and from a geopolitical and security strategic aspect: relating to the vulnerability of the submarine cable system raising the issue of security risk, supervision and information cyberwarfare.

Submarine cables represent a geopolitical and security “critical infrastructure”[4] in every sense of the word. There is the issue of their fragility in a hostile sea environment (seabed instability, shark bites, etc.). They are at the mercy of ships' anchors, fishing nets, copper thieves, as was the case in Vietnam in 2007 where over 50 km of cable was stolen by fishermen. Damages to cables may paralyse communication for months. For instance, the restoration of the SeaMeWE 4 cable from Annaba in April 2017 following a damage caused by bad weather led to a virtual disruption of internet access and a temporary loss of 90% of Algeria's international connection capacity. The cables are usually buried beneath the seafloor to prevent them from being caught by ship anchors or fishing nets. However, some parts remain exposed and vulnerable particularly at landing points which are at risk of cyberattacks. Landing points may become the main targets of terrorist attacks. A large part of the geoeconomic functioning of countries and their economies is based on these cable flows, mostly commonly routed all-by-sea. Such web numerical highways are of strategic importance to countries and as such are subject to special oversight. The protection of submarine networks and cables are the key problem of cybersecurity. In an article published in the journal Hérodote in 2016, Camille Morel[5] showed multiple vulnerabilities of the global cable system and noted the absence of the legal status of “cable theft” at open sea. Thefts, cutting of submarine cables and piracy all require better security and protection. But this does not solve the delicate issue of the power of supervision or even interference by major numerical actors (digital giants, government or international agencies, criminal networks ...) and their attempt to take over the data concentrated in this large information pipeline.


New numerical Leviathan

For centuries, technological and scientific advancement has made it possible for the Western civilisation to persistently push the boundaries. The discovery of nanotechnology and numerical revolution are not immune to totalitarian urges and projects. For instance, in parallel with scientific and pharmaceutical research concerning the extension of human life and transhumanist utopia, large corporations of the Silicon Valley are already thinking of eternity not as an ethical or existential issue but as a technological problem that has to be solved. On behalf of the Google Group, the futurist Ray Kurzweil conceives products and services for the future. He is known for his notion that immortality is near since we are entering into a new era in which machine intelligence and human intelligence merge, and people will become half-robot-half-humans, constantly connected to the internet. Our mind and spirit should be stocked on the web in the form of numerical data, such as a Word datafile or on a USB flash drive. This advancement is supposed to become a reality in 2045. In that regard, in this transhumanist view, the essayist Evgeny Morozov already sees a new form of modern totalitarianism which he terms “technological solutionism“.

Proto-totalitarianism or historical totalitarianism of the 20th century required a lot of human and material resources for the functioning, containing and controlling of the society. In addition to physical force and repression, it was necessary to devise and apply means of extortion, active and passive coercion by means of propaganda and cultural hegemony. Such totalitarianism was presented as a historical necessity in the name of the common collective good and as the only valid system able to prevent chaos and the destruction of the corpus of the society. In Mass Psychology of Fascism, Wilhelm Reich explores socio-psychological mechanisms of extortion behind the consent of the crowd which enable the “production of totalitarianism”. The time of analogue production of totalitarianism based on crowd consent (acceptance of a totalitarian system based on a vertical control) is historically exhausted today. Other means of soft coercion and manipulation which are far more powerful and efficient for a total control of the society are based on numerical technologies. There is a principle that each social space in democracy represents a point of negotiation, discussion, contestation, exchange of ideas and polemics between different individuals and social groups confirming or negating the common will or consent to a political option or official politics. The system of political representation should apply in principle that which has been promised during the election campaign, align activity with a bigger or smaller consent or opposition. Within a totalitarian system based on numerical technologies, all the mentioned aspects of negotiation and exchange within a social space disappear as they are of no use and not necessary, and are excluded in favour of a new totalitarian numerical and virtual agreement reflecting a virtual illusion of preservation of democratic discussion and agreement. Numerical senders and servers simulate a democratic discussion focused on the obligation of efficacy and then prescribe laws with or without consent of the majority of the representatives. In that regard, in such a system the corpus of society has been introduced in the context of simulation of contestation or consent through the use of numerical information technology (social networks such as Facebook, Twitter). This is a dematerialised society which maintains the illusion-simulation and the possible “subversion”, simulation which also enables the control of mind and will, by regulating urges and wishes and affecting emotional charge.

The original organisational system of control in “modern totalitarianism” depended on the pivotal element that underwent constant improvement, adaptation and testing and that was based on the model of Bentham's prototype of panopticum of circular control. However, in today's 21st century, the emergence of artificial intelligence in the form of specialised “smart” algorithms, based on the “deep neural network learning”, “data mining” undermines the traditional system of control evolving from the circular, round form into an algorithm network, transversal and asymmetric form. The absolute observance of the norms and rules lies at the heart of totalitarianism. Since artificial intelligence is in essence a collection of rules used within an algorithm, the totalitarian performativity of such new system players is obvious. The system is upgraded constantly, with more efficient rules being adopted each year which necessarily limit the space of individual freedom, always in the name of general well-being and security. One could say that algorithms of artificial intelligence are invisible watchdogs of contemporary society. We all know they are all around us and that we are watched by them all the time, selected through statistics on our profiles, behaviour, movements, but despite this awareness of totalitarian control, we passively submit to some sort of voluntary slavery. The Bentham's principle of a total panopticon space is possible today exactly owing to artificial intelligence and numerical technologies. It is an “algo political totalitarianism”, which represents a simulation of an open prison on a state level, automating repression of the “breaches of rules” and imposing self-censorship. Constant growth ideology is closely linked to security control. With growing modernisation, the world becomes more dangerous as it generates an increasing number of risks of various nature. Modernisation and growing sophistication of the means of security develop in parallel with a rising sense of insecurity. The emergence of a techno-totalitarian society in the name of obligation of higher security for all might turn against its own architects and threaten the future of mankind.

The Angamben's thesis of homo sacer in modern society can be supported by numerical technology which dissects and profiles each individual in relation to his/her cognitive and social abilities, and exchange of such information between different high-tech Silicon Valley startups and different intelligence or para-intelligence state services are powerful means of control, far bigger and stronger than former totalitarian systems of the 20th century. In the name of “struggle against terrorist nihilism”, the legitimation discourse is accompanied by the strengthening and expansion of the consumer society on a global level, which promotes “voluntary slavery” and such “soft totalitarianism” is perceived as a factor of peace and stability. However, behind the imperative of security there hides a strategy of submission and neutralisation of citizens who are to exist only in the form of passive and loyal consumers. The exchange and proliferation of information data captured and recuperated by GAFA (Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon) and other networks, such as NATU (Netflix, Airbnb, Tesla and Uber), may jeopardise the functioning of democracies as they pave the way to misuse and manipulation. We are on the verge of the real “algorithmic government” that would replace a traditional state and the society as an apotheosis of a “total project”.


Virtualisation of the world and the process of derealisation

In his work Histoire de l'utopie planétaire: de la cité à la société globale, Armand Mattelart[6] explains that the idea of a great utopia of a united world of brothers based on universal values lies at the core of development of the Western world. Such an idea is also in the centre of a debate on a modern revolution of the information society, termed by some researches “the third industrial revolution”. This managerial discourse has become dominant in modern society. The whole discourse on globalisation, its ornamental version with the internet, provides a structure for a technicist and mercantile vision of the old utopia of the human community, which is based on a progressivist and global conception of the world and life. Various models and projects of global integration derive from this discourse. For some, such as the geographer Elisée Reclus, they should rely on social solidarity networks and for others on the necessity of interconnection of national markets subjected to a new division of labour and agreements on common security. Mattelart argues that the starting utopia which reflects the general will to achieve a better world, based on the respect of diversity, illustrated by the ideal of a “cosmopolis[7], is recuperated and integrated in a globalisation discourse distancing itself from cultural relativism. Media colonisation and virtualisation of the “polis” by managerial prophecy, which deligitimises organised participants of public and political life, have gradually achieved a transition from a “cosmopolis” to a “technopolis”. The “technopolis” glorifies and boosts media-managerial and mercantile society, striving to monopolise and appropriate the whole of history, free of any in-depth dimension and memory. In this society of technological achievement, the phenomena of virtual telepresence, which form a type of common global teleexistence and provide a technical basis for virtual reality, erase all visible borders, distances, markers and the very idea of relief in the name of artificial fixing of the present and the real instant that no one is a master of. According to Paul Virilo, the ancient “cosmopolis” gives way to “omnipolis”, an autonomised, globalised, financial and stock exchange system, which exceeds the geopolitical telluric arrangement and continental extensibility in the name of the rule of planetary metropolitics as a system of interactive global telecommunications, extending across virtual networks of a new dematerialised “telecontinent”. From the urbanisation of the actual space of the national geography to the urbanisation of the actual time of international telecommunications, the “space-world” of geopolitics is gradually giving strategic priority to the “time-world” of chronological proximity without delay and antipode. In his book La mondialisation de la culture, Jean-Pierre Warnier proposes a synthesis of the phenomenon of the globalisation of culture. His approach implies an analysis of the repercussions of the global culture, particularly Northern American and European, on local cultures. According to Warnier, the process of globalisation is a symbol of general depersonalisation and denationalisation used by globalisation to evacuate and marginalise social participants in favour of large financial and economic multinational units. Towards the end of the 1950s, Ronald Barthes, analysing the mythology of his time, labelled the bourgeois as an “anonymous society”, the label used to describe the “world business class” of today. In this context, “technopolis” as an ideology is characteristic to that process of deculturalisation. In the previous century, colonisation was the product of a progressive vision of the world and history. In the 20th century, a new form of neocolonialism takes the form of a global organisation of the market attempting to integrate by force peripheral countries and generalise the standards of mercantile metropolis economy.

Beyond doubt, the new ideological trend of the global “technopolis” striving, in different geopolitical environments, to propel technological, political, military security and sociological changes in the whole world and particularly in the new peripheral countries, requires from these same countries maximum adjustment capacity and imperative of cooperation. Such sudden revolutionary changes cause, to use the physical terminology, a certain “stochastic noise”, a concept derived from the theory of activity of stochastic resonance in physical and neurobiological systems. In the processes of change, which shape the new reality in an environment such as the macrosystem (which contains subsystems), survival factors are developed, from sensors to symbiosis. The keys to survival in a too fast evolutionary dynamics of the system lie in sensory sensitivity and sufficient flexibility. However, it is clear that the process of globalisation and communication of kinetic changes, in the subsystems such as economic systems, states, cultural and interest groups, gives rise to the phenomena of internal noise, which is caused by perpetual shifts in value systems and sociocultural trends on a micro level. Amid fast technological and communication changes on a global level, the development of devices ill-suited to the new conditions or the late identification of signals pose a threat to a successful system adjustment. However, a weak below-detection threshold signal may be increased by means of an optimum level of stochastic noise, which means that modern techno-communication and information trends of development and changes are concealed by the phenomenon of “stochastic noise”, through manipulation of signals by external and internal noise in “unadapted and more conservative” systems. Between ethnocentrism and hyperglobalism, Warnier suggests a third path of pragmatic nature, based on the idea that the Western culture is not automatically and magically accepted. Export culture is subject to a form of recontextualisation, which is based on three facts: uniformisation and globalisation are not unilateral phenomena; the pessimism of the theoreticians of the “centre” excludes from the analysis the phenomena characteristic of peripheral cultures and does not take into account the capacity for creation, innovation and imagination of the diverse subjects of the peripheral countries; the standardisation of mass production and consumer goods does not cause automatically a standardisation in thinking and social practices. Warnier argues that consumption has become the place of cultural production and he uses his thesis of recontextualisation to criticise the approaches by Benjamin Barber, Samuel Huntington and Ramonet. In an original contemporary analysis of the modern society, Christian Marazzi states how modern society experiences the “linguistic turn” of the economy because, according to him, the entry of communication and language into the sphere of production presents the transformation of the period, the “paradigm shift” and “transformation crisis”, the transition from Fordism to post-Fordism, the transition from a system of mass production and consumption to the system of non-material production and flexible distribution (flux tendus). In his analyses of the birth of “cognitive labourers”; Marazzi points to a class of producers no longer “commanded,” using Adam Smith’s terminology, by machines external to live labour, but rather by technologies that are increasingly mental, symbolic, and communicative. In this cognitive context, a new fixed capital is born, becomes dominant and takes the form of a rigid disc, artificial intelligence that executes social programming. Gilbert Larochelle termed this phenomenon “technocratic imagination”, which also touches upon the topics analysed by Viviane Forrester[8] and examined in studies on exclusion by the sociologist Bourdieu. In a modern social context with a repeating controlling discourse, characterised by the active role played by cybernetics, which manipulates “symbols, data, language, words” and communication elements, a new “immaterial society” emerges, bringing about the naturalisation and domestication of social relations. As Lucien Sfeza suggests in his work La communication, modern society is obsessed with the idea of communication at the moment when this society does not know anymore how to communicate with itself and when its values and cohesion are contested and symbols exhausted. The centrifugal society with no regulation in which communication attempts to connect specialised analyses and messages from the outmost “partitioned” circles. This phenomenon of “partitioning”, the divide between the idea of communication and a fragmented society in its functioning and its symbolic function lies at the heart of Habermas' concept of the “refeudalistion” of public space. Habermas' diagnosis of the modern society rests on actuality, proving that modern society is based on wrong communication, which is influenced by perverted effects of power and profit as agents of fragmentation and destruction of symbolic links. Indeed, one of the most important scientific and research challenges of the global world are the questions of the source and nature of information and communication, its messages and metamessages and the virtual and speed dimension of the human being who in the future will not even intervene in the process of production of information and communication.

The word “virtual” derives from the Medieval Latin idiom “virtualis”, deriving from “virtus”, power, might. In scholastics, that which is virtual is that which exists in its power but not act. The virtual strives towards actualisation without ultimately achieving effective and formal concretisation. The virtual is not opposed to the real, but to the actual: virtuality and actuality are two different manners of existence. In Différence et Répétition, Gilles Deleuze presents a necessary distinction between the possible and the virtual. The “possible” is already constituted as the latent and phantom “real” and will be achieved without any changes in its determination and nature. The only thing missing is existence. Opposed to the “possible”, which is statically constituted, the virtual is a problematic complex, a node of tendencies and powers which follow a situation, an event, an object, and which requires the process of resolution and actualisation. Virtualisation may be defined as a movement opposite to actualisation, which implies a transition from the actual to the virtual, an "elevation of power" of an entity. Virtualisation is not a process of derealisation, but a mutation of identity, a displacement of the ontological centre of gravity of an object. To virtualise an entity presupposes the discovery of a general question mark relating to that entity. In his book “Atlas”[9], Michel Serres provides a good illustration of the theme of virtual, viewed as an “outside-of-there (hors-là)”. Imagination, memory, knowledge and faith are the vectors of virtualisation, which detach us and make us leave the “there” before the process of informatisation and numerical networks takes place. Virtualisation is transformed into an ontological exodus, which, in contrast with Heidegger's “Dasein”, does not belong to a specific place or a specific location. Virtualisation invents a nomadic culture, not by returning to the Paleolithic era or ancient civilisations, but by enabling the emergence of social interactive relations reconfiguring with a minimum inertia. When a person, a collectivity, an act or a piece of information are virtualised, they are placed “outside-of-there” and become deterritorialised, detached from the usual physical, geographic space and chronological time. Synchronisation replaces spatial unity, while interconnections substitute for temporal unity. The process of virtualisation is also facilitated by acceleration in modern communication and physical mobility. Virtualisation is not limited to acceleration of the known communication processes or the alienation of time and space as expounded by Paul Virilio[10]; it invents new qualitative speed, the mutant categories of time and space. In parallel with the phenomenon of deterritorialisation, virtualisation is marked by a transition from inside to outside and from outside to inside. The effect termed “Moebius effect” relates to different areas: private-public, subjective-objective, map-territory, etc.

Today, the general process of virtualisation through digitalisation covers the world of information and communication, but also the world of the body, the economy and the collective frameworks of sensibility and exercise of intelligence. Virtualisation affects different social groupings: virtual communities, virtual companies, virtual states and virtual democracies. The question is: should we be afraid of general derealisation? A form of universal disappearance, as suggested by Jean Baudrillard? Is the modern global world under threat from a cultural apocalypse or implosion of space-time, as forecasted by Paul Virilio? Pierre Lévy[11] answers with a different non-catastrophic hypothesis: that a continuation of hominisation is expressed through the ongoing cultural changes in the 21st century. This means that virtualisation, in its philosophical, anthropological (relationship of the process of hominisation and virtualisation) and socio-political aspects constitutes the essence of various ongoing mutations. In this sense, virtualisation is neither good nor bad nor neutral because it presents itself as the movement of heterogenesis of the human being.


Numerical disruption

Disruption denotes a disturbance in a market where positions have already been established through innovation and new strategies. This phenomenon has been theoretically developed by Clayton M. Christensen and Jean-Marie Dru[12]. Disruptive innovation means “the process of developing new products or services to substitute existing technologies and gain a competitive advantage”. Namely, a disruptive product or service is directed towards the market they were earlier unable to satisfy (new market disruption) or represents a simpler, cheaper or more economical alternative to existing products (cheaper disruption). In practice, we can see how numerous markets have already been shaken by new companies offering new, surprising products or services or having innovative business models, or aggressive market strategies. Well-known new companies, such as Tesla, Uber, Airbnb, SnappCar, Nextdoor, Waze, Spotify, Picnic, HelloFresh, Zalando,, Virgin and Amazon have all made a disruption in their respective markets. However, disruption disturbs subtle mechanisms, the allies of socialisation and conviviality, of the joint life. Namely, the proliferation of technology in the name of ongoing progress causes the loss of markers, which Sedlmayr[13] calls the “loss of the centre”. Disruption, etymologically derived from Latin disrumpere (to break into pieces), used in the jargon of new high-tech numerical companies that stress “disruptive innovation”, which is an innovation of interruption because it disturbs acquired positions, in a way represents a short circuit in the current rules of the game. In addition to the economic and technological dimension, the phenomenon of disruption also deeply affects the collective and individual perception of the world, the so-called social representation and the construction of social reality. For the economist Bertrand Stiegler, disruption, an ongoing, accelerated innovation, represents a form of “soft barbarism”, which interrupts long and subtitle processes of socialisation[14].

The disruption phenomenon, in the manner of Kuhn's scientific revolutions, introduces in an accelerated pace innovations that impose a change of paradigm in the society, collective and individual psychology, in the very perception of social reality. Namely, from Google through Uber, disruption destabilises our private and public spheres of life. Stiegeler quotes Michel Foucault[15] when he stresses that this is a case of “collective madness”. This process and the escape towards the new and innovative have been going on for centuries, and what characterises the current temporality epoch is what Maurice Blanchot calls the non-epoch, the very epochal absence marked by the proliferation of “impersonal anonymous forces”[16]. The distinctive thing about the epoch are collective inheritance and shared common experiences, for instance, modernity, the counterculture of the 1960s, etc. Current projections of the future are predominantly negative: climate changes, the disappearance of the humankind, terrorism, war … What happens in disruption is what Nietzsche calls the realisation of nihilism and the “destruction of all values”. The new disruptive economy is predatory and it is based on the elimination of singularity through performativity and hyperproductivity. The ongoing contemporary numerical revolution is eminently a disruptive phenomenon. Disruption opposes civilisation. As a phenomenon, the term “disruption” originated in 1993 with the reticular phenomenon of the “network numerical structuring” of generalised connectivity. Specifically, through the reticulation of algorithms we have witnessed an unprecedented acceleration of innovations. In this sense, reticular technology systematically disturbs what in the long run contributes to the creation and maintenance of civilisation. In this sense, disruption, due to the imposition of speedy technological innovations causes a permanent destabilisation of society. These innovations are ongoing and vary in form, but all lead to the generalised automation and robotisation of jobs and society. It is a case of multi-layered innovations: artificial intelligence, virtual reality, drones, blockchains, robots and internet objects (IoT), chatbots, Blockchain system (decentralised and transparent register of all transactions and exchanges), 3D printing, etc. The numerical revolution and the disruption phenomenon mark an important moment of technological interruption, which also causes an epistemological break, which interrupts what philosophers call épokhè: interruption, a suspension of everything that occurred under known, common modus. The technological épokhè generates another épokhè, related to mental structures, art, science, politics, law and all this creates the matrices of the new age of the epoch. However, in accordance with Kuhn's scheme of scientific revolution, the technological jumps of the breakdown, in principle, grow increasingly stronger and occur at increasingly closer intervals. With numerical reticulation we live in a dispositive in which change is a permanent category, in which nothing is stable any longer and, in this sense, the human being cannot follow and feed on such innovation so, in a way, it is faced with a process of disintegration (due to inability to “digest”, synthetize and elaborate knowledge and experience).


The market of attention and capitalism of sublimation

Given the everyday presence and additive effect of numerical machines and actors such as Facebook, WhatsApp, Snapchat, Viber, Google, Amazon and Apple, the numerical virtual universe became the perfect mega machine to capture and channel individual and collective attention. The numerical media can simulate all the details of other media by accumulating all the previous classical media functions (television, typewriter, etc.) and, in this sense, have captured unprecedented space of representation and expression, but they also become a powerful tool for captivating and directing real time user attention. Namely, the labyrinth of social networks resembles everyday technological viruses that search us out, re-direct and attract attention in oftentimes cacophonic and synchronic order. Our attention is most times coerced and directed towards watching the offered pseudo-communicational, playful and consumeristic demands, all packed in a relational, interactive and so-called “creative language”. This is the issue of the new economy of attention already presented by sociologist Gabriel Tarde at the beginning of the 20th century, which created a lack of attention. Indeed, the overproduction of the market requires advertising forms that may “halt and direct attention, repair it on the offered item”. Of course, this phenomenon is not new and advertising strategies and marketing try to attract the consumer's attention to this or that product. However, the novelty today is that with the explosion of Internet applications and smartphones attention has become a rare commodity, a resource, a new currency that may be capitalised and stored. Deliberating economy in the sense of this new “economy of attention” means reducing attention to measurable economic problems. The everyday flood of information and inputs available on mobile and internet devices, most often without any selection of depth and meaning, commonly exceeds both users’ cognitive and sensory capabilities, which leads to the bulimic consumption of visual content and information in the digital world where the line between attention and distraction, concentration and dispersion, disappears. This is a phenomenon of “blind attention”, which fits within media and numerical strategies of escapism and disinformation. The issue of the new “economy of attention” opens up the key question of the new “anthropology of attention”, since the manipulation and orientation of human attention disrupt long-term anthropologic constants based on the diachronic understanding of time-space, respect of private internal spheres, personal integrity and the need for recognition within a society. The impact of this economy would also be catastrophic for culture, education and cognitive capabilities of new generations given that the capability of concentration and transfer of knowledge are significantly reduced and redirected. For the futurist Ray Kurzweil[17], immortality is at close reach because we are entering the period when “technology and human intelligence will merge”. We lack free will and control of our attention and will soon became half-human and half-machines that constantly connect to the internet with our minds soon emitting digital data online. All this will allegedly be possible by 2045, according to the prophecies of transhumanism. We are witness to what the philosopher Eric Sadin calls the “world siliconization”[18], stressing the anthropological and political effect of what he calls the “algorithmic governance of life” or “digital soft totalitarianism”, which ultimately strives to deprive us of our attention, our independent judgement and to direct the course of our lives. The economy of attention that fits into this “new industry of life” would be the latest “avatar” of technological liberalism.


New theogony: disruption technology, chaos or cosmos-oikos?

The invention of robotics and accelerated automatization of jobs, as well as constant digital innovations, are accompanied by a sort of soft-totalitarian official discourse of “technologos”, which in addition to the glorification of the emancipatory strength of ”new technologies” promotes the social imperative of adapting and transforming, without having in mind how much actually such adaptation de-socialises and destabilises human communities. Therefore, it is necessary to view the numerical phenomenon within a framework of a wider critical interpretation of J. Ellul, who places technological innovations within technological progress and wider modernity, in which progress instead of emancipation becomes alienation. Such new technology illustrates well the words of Norbert Wiener, the father of cyber science, who, in his work Cybernetics and Society stresses that “a revolution is under way, which will enable machines not only to replace human muscles but possibly replace the human brain”, alluding precisely to new digital innovations within the framework of the ongoing numerical revolution and the development of artificial intelligence. We may say that from the start of industrial capitalism in 1870 in Great Britain and the joining of the steam engine (invented by James Watt) and entrepreneurship (Matthew Boulton realised and commercialised Watt’s inventions by introducing manufacturing engineering and machine tools) innovation turned into the new paradigm of permanent innovation in the service of constant progress. Later, Joseph Schumpeter would theorise about the characteristics of economic change. Innovation marks modern society, but also the change of the role and purpose of innovation in society, economy and technology. Namely, there are innovations without inventions, as well as inventions that do not create innovation. Innovations, in principle, try to socialise technological inventions that arise from scientific discoveries. However, this social dimension of innovation has been completely disregarded today because innovations, from the beginning of Fordism to libidinal capitalist economy and Edward Bernays' marketing (who differentiated needs from wants in Freudian terms), have been directed exclusively to serve consumerism and profit by manipulating and sublimating consumers' wants. In this context, constant disruptive innovation, especially in the area of numerical economy, has become the exclusive means of conquering the market and since the objects of lust and want are endless, we come to the civilisational and ontological question of the direction and purpose of such new disruptive “technogony”. The words of Norbert Weiner well illustrate this new technogony. The father of cyber science, in his work Cybernetics and Society stresses that a revolution is underway that will enable machines not only to replace human muscles but open up the possibility of replacing the human brain, alluding precisely to new digital innovations within the framework of numerical revolution and the development of artificial intelligence.

Namely, let us remember Hannah Arendt when she stressed that a person should feel integrated in a “common world”, which structures the universe in order to be able to mature gracefully and peacefully. Hesiod's poem Theogony[19] from the Greek mythology describes the creation, genesis of the world, but also a close connection with the gods, interpreting the fragility of the cosmologic unity and balance when Zeus conquers the Titans by preserving this balance and justice. Disruptive technogony may be giving birth to a new chaotic world, which interrupts this continuum and the subtle balance between the world understood as a common house (Oikos) and people because all values are reduced to their trade value. The same process of perversion is shown by Ovid in Metamorphoses[20], which shows human essence, how a man from the state of innocence can reach full decay and corruption. Is this not the start of nihilism? Is the numerical disruption as a means of divergence from cosmos as a common world precisely the main leverage in the desacralisation of the age of the Titans, as mentioned by Ernst Junger? Disruption crates nihilism in the fullest Nietzschean sense of the word: “destruction of all values” through the omnipresence and prevalence of a predatory economy, based on the elimination of singularity through calculation. Even animals have a sense of understanding the world, as proven by biologist Jakob von Uexküll in his work Mondes animaux et monde humain, and this capacity to think and understand the world is in the core of the Heideggerian notion of “Dasein” is what gives birth to the world (Umwelt), and for the first time ever the human kind is faced precisely with the absence of this understanding and the possibility of constituting the world as cosmos.


[1]  Kuhn, Thomas Samuel, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, Chicago, University of Chicago Press, 1962.

[2]  Carrie, Hugo, Géopolitique des câbles sous-marins, illustration dune mondialisation causée et causante, 8 January 2018.

[3]  Louchet, André, Observation, télécommunications et océans, in La planète océane, Armand Colin, 2014.

[4]  Galand, Jean-Pierre, Critique de la notion d'infrastructure critique, Flux n°81, 2010.

[5]  Morel, Camille, Menace sous les mers: les vulnérabilités du système câblier mondial, N° spécial Mers et océans, Revue Hérodote, 2016.

[6]  Mattelart, Armand, Histoire de l'utopie planétaire, de la cité prophétique à la société globale, Paris, La Découverte. Poche, 2000.

[7]  Vujić, Jure, Fragmenti geopolitičke misli, ITG, Zagreb, 2004.

[8]  Forrester, Viviane, L'horreur économique, Fayard, 1996.

[9]  Serres, Michel, Atlas, Julliard, Paris, 1994.

[10]  Virilio, Paul, L'horizon négatif, la conduite intérieure, Galillée, Paris, 1984.

[11]  Lévy, Pierre, Les Technologies de l'intelligence, L'avenir de la pensée à l'ère informatique, La découverte, Paris, 1990.
Lévy, Pierre, L'intelligence collective, Pour une anthropologie du cyberspave, La découverte, Paris, 1994.

[12]  Alaphilippe, Laurent, and Nora, Dominique, Le concept de “Disruption" expliqué par son créateur [archive], at, 24 January 2016 (reference 20 January 2018).

[13]  Sedlmayr, Hans, Gubljenje središta: likovne umjetnosti 19. i 20. stoljeća kao simptom i simbol vremena, published in the Croatian translation by Verbum, Split, 2001, from Verlust der Mitte, Die bildende Kunst des 19. und 20. Jahrhunderts als Symptom und Symbol der Zeit.

[15]  Foucault, Michel, Folie et diraison: Histoire de la folie a l'dge classique, Paris, 1961.

[19]  Theogony, a Hesiod's poem, is the oldest source of Greek mythology. The poem is a mythological synthesis discussing the origin of the world and genealogy of gods. It tries to affirm Zeus, who by winning against the Titans becomes the almighty protector of justice.

[20]  Metamorphoses by Publius Ovidius Naso is a mythical poem describing myths of metamorphoses of both humans and gods into plants, animals or other. The poem also describes the origin of the world and the metamorphoses into four ages: Golden, Silver, Bronze and Iron.



Alaphilippe, Laurent, and Nora, Dominique: Le concept de “Disruption" expliqué par son créateur [archive], at, 24 January 2016 (reference 20 January 2018).

Carrie, Hugo, Géopolitique des câbles sous-marins, illustration d’une mondialisation “causée et causante”, 8 January 2018.

de Rosnay, Joël, L'homme symbiotique, Seuil, Paris, 1995.

Deleuze, Gilles, and Guattari, Félix, Mille plateaux, Minuit, Paris, 1980.

Deleuze, Gilles, Différence et repetition, PUF, pp 169-176; 1968.

Ellul, Jacques, Le Système technicien, Paris, Le Cherche-midi, 2012.

Forrester, Viviane, L'horreur économique, Fayard, Paris, 1996.

Foucault, Michel, Folie et diraison: Histoire de la folie a l'dge classique, Paris, 1961.

Galand, Jean-Pierre, Critique de la notion d'infrastructure critique, Flux n°81, 2010.

Guattari, Félix, Chaosmose, Galilée, Paris, 1992.

Heidegger, Martin, Etre et temps, Gallimard, Paris, 1927.

Kuhn, Thomas S., The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, Chicago, University of Chicago Press, 1962.

Lévy, Paul, Les Technologies de l'intelligence. L'avenir de la pensée à l'ère informatique, La découverte, Paris, 1990.

Lévy, Paul, L'intelligence collective. Pour une anthropologie du cyberspave, La découverte, Paris, 1994.

Louchet, André, Observation, télécommunications et océans, in La planète océane, Armand Colin, 2014.

Löwith, Karl, Histoire et salut, Gallimard, Paris;

Mattelard, Armand, Histoire de l'utopie planétaire. De la cité prophétique à la société globale, Paris, La Découverte, Poche, 2000.

McLuhan, Marshall, La Galaxie Gutenberg Face à l'ère éléctronique, HMH, Montréal, 1967.

Morel, Camille, Menace sous les mers : les vulnérabilités du système câblier mondial, N° spécial "Mers et océans", Revue Hérodote, 2016.

Rheingold, Howard, La réalité virtuelle, Dunod, Paris, 1993.

Rheingold, Howard, Les communautés virtuelles, Adison Wesley, Paris, 1995.

Sedlmayr, Hans, Gubljenje središta: likovne umjetnosti 19. i 20. stoljeća kao simptom i simbol vremena, published in the Croatian translation by Verbum, Split, 2001, from Verlust der Mitte, Die bildende Kunst des 19. und 20. Jahrhunderts als Symptom und Symbol der Zeit.

Serres, Michel, Atlas, Julliard, Paris, 1994.

Stiegler, Bernard, L’accélération de l’innovation court-circuite tout ce qui contribue à l’élaboration de la civilisation, at, 1 July 2016 (reference 20 January 2018).

Toffler, Alvin and Heidi, Guerre et Contre-guerre, Fayard, Paris, 1994.

Virilio, Paul, L'horizon négatif, la conduite intérieure, Galillée, Paris, 1984.

Virilo, Paul, Brzina oslobađanja, Biblioteka Psefizma, 1999.

Vujić, Jure, Fragmenti geopolitičke misli, ITG, Zagreb, 2004.

Whithehead, Alfred North, Procés et réalité, Gallimard, Paris, 1995.


Geopolitika numeričkog prostora i vladavina algoritama




Numerički mediji mogu simulirati sve detalje drugih medija, kumulirajući sve prethodne klasične medijske funkcije ( televizija, pisaći stroj, itd..), i tom smjeru osvajaju do sada nedostižive prostore reprezentacije i izražaja. Takav kapacitet numeričkih medija za digitalno programiranje kroz modularnih struktura, svih prethodnih funkcija klasičinih mas-medija uspijevaju putem mrežne rekonfiguracije i kulturalnog transkodiranja, predočiti retrospektivnu sliku svijeta i kulture u povijesti čovječanstva. Inter-konektivnost između numeričkih medija i internetskih mreža predstavlja planetarnu virtualnu mrežu koji neki uspoređuju sa “svjetskim kolektivnim korteksom”. Međutim, s obzirom na rastuću gustoću i kompleksnost, numerički mediji postaju sve hermetičniji i složeniji u njihovom dubokom funkcioniranju. Postupna autonomizacija i emancipacija od svojih kreatora i operatora, otvara proces u kojem se nastaje zagonetna umjetna inteligencija kao uvod u novu vladavinu algoritama. Riječ je o uvodu u novu virtualnu geopolitiku cyber-prostora u kojem su strategije osvajanja i monopola nad informacijama postali suparnički prostor igre moći između službenih državnih aktera i drugih asimetričnih aktera.


Ključne riječi: numerički, mediji, geopolitika, kablovi, pažnja, ekonomija, totalitarizam, poremećaj.




 8(15)#17 2019

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UDK 159.937.51:340.64
Pregledni članak
Review article
Primljeno: 02.11.2018.



Dario Terzić

Visoka škola za turizam i menadžment, Konjic, BiH
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Interprating Chromatic Codes through the Ages and
in Different Modern Social Contexts

Puni tekst: pdf (415 KB), English, Str. 2333 - 2345





Colours are crucial to what we may call “the visualization of identity.” There are numerous scientific disciplines that address the issue of colours. Chromatics as a discipline (focusing on the role of colours in communication) is of recent origin. It is the social context that makes colour important, gives it a social definition and meaning,­ creates codes and values. Messages that we receive contain different codes, which can be dominant (we accept them by default), subject to negotiation (we accept them partially) and oppositional (we reject them). If we change colours in a message (a flag, car, or sports jersey), our intention is to change the message as well. Misunderstanding arises when the two sides in communication understand a single sign or message differently (the so-called “noise in communication” according to Schram). Conflicts are mostly caused by differences in the interpretation of facts.


Key words: message, cod, sign, colour, chromatic, interpretation, communication.



1. Introduction

“In matters of colours, there can be no dispute” (De gustibus et coloribus non est disputandum) – following this old Latin saying, we shall not quarrel about tastes. As for the colours, however, we shall discuss, converse, explore, connect...

Chromatics, as a discipline of communicology dealing with colours, is of a recent date. Colours are symbols with a broad field of meanings and connotations, although they can also be mere signs. In the ancient times of human civilization, colour underwent metaphorization as a sign: the sign was transformed into a symbol, which deepened the symbolic distance between the sign and the signified (Radojković and Đorđević, 2005:144). Colours have an (ir)rational impact upon us.

“There is a symbolic level in the meaning of colours, a level that does not relate to the visually recognizable characteristics of an object, but to the abstract domain of meaning. This level includes interpreting colour by referring to a class of abstract concepts” (Trandafilović, 2006: 79). According to Van Leeuwen (2012:7), colours are bundles of distinctive traits and complexes charged with metaphorical meaning.


2. Colours through the ages

Understanding colour as a symbol is only possible when the meaning is rendered abstract on a higher level of cognition and connotation. Colours can be explained based on the experience we gained in our childhood, later in life, or by learning in special ways. It is important that we see colours and treat them in the way we have learned. We see colours, but we classify them into categories according to the rules of our social group, our culture. When someone asks us what the words “red”, “green”, or “blue” mean, we indicate things of that particular colour. Colours are carriers of different meanings and characteristics not only in religious, but also in cultural contexts and concepts. It is the cultural specificity that embodies the meaning of a colour: red, for example, is a provoking colour in some civilizations; in the West, it signifies danger, fire, but also Saint Valentine’s, the day of lovers. According to the Hebrew tradition, the name Adam means red (and vivid). In the West, it is undesirable to wear red at funerals, while in South Africa it is a colour of sorrow. Khidr (also known as “the Green”) is one of the most important figures in the Quran and a companion of Musa’s.

The importance of colours in Islam is also evident from Surah 30:22 on the Byzantines (ar-Rum):

Arabic original: وَمِنْ آيَاتِهِ خَلْقُ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ وَاخْتِلَافُ أَلْسِنَتِكُمْ وَأَلْوَانِكُمْ ۚ إِنَّ فِي ذَٰلِكَ لَآيَاتٍ لِلْعَالِمِينَ

(“And of His signs is the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the diversity of your language and your colours. Indeed in that are the signs for those of knowledge.”)

Colours have always occupied an important place in the psychology of homo sapiens, which is evident from the painted walls of the caves in which our ancestors lived. Red and black were already then two principles that directly referred to two important concepts – life and death. These were the two basic dyes used in that period, according to the anthropologist Howard Sun in his book Secrets of Color, where he recalls how the Neanderthal man marked the graves of his family members in colours (Sun, 1995:100).

In ancient Egypt, the symbolism of colours further evolved. This chromatic sensitivity spread from the East to Greece and Rome. The ancient Greeks were keenly interested in the problems of light and colour, and thus it was in this period that the aesthetics of colours evolved, with the first theories dealing with the problem of colour gamut. Early Greek drawings on vases typically had two white lines on a black background. Somewhat later, red appeared as the third colour, and then ochre yellow. These four colours were used in painting and were, according to Empedocles, the primary colours of nature.[21]

The absence of individual colours in the life of ancient Greece and Rome was partly related to the scientific ideas that prevailed at that time. There were, namely, three competing concepts. According to Pythagoras, our perception of colours, that is, the possibility of seeing colours, was due to the rays that the eye emitted and that searched for a coloured object; for Epicure, it was the bodies themselves that sent the rays to the eye; and the third concept was that of Plato, which would prevail in the 3rd and 4th centuries – the perception of colour was due to an encounter between the rays coming from the eye and those emitted by the perceived object. This concept implies that, when the eye is not directed at the coloured object, the colour of that object does not exist (each object is colourless until we look at it).

In the period between the 9th and 12th centuries, it was generally not known that colour was part of the light beam; instead, it was believed that it was tied to matter, and since colour belonged to matter, it was to be removed from the Church. One of the most important questions posed by Michel Pastoreau is how the research on colour has evolved and whether that which we call perception is something natural (that is, whether the eye of our ancestors was different as an organ from our eye), or perception is cultural in its character. In his research, the author has contradicted many of his predecessors and opted for the latter hypothesis, namely that the position of colour in a society is defined by culture rather than biology. Colour is the organigramme of all social life: it articulates space and time, coordinates knowledge, and creates systems out of it (Pastoureau, 1987:64). It is therefore very important to note that, when analysing colours, everything depends on the social circumstances. It is impossible to analyse colours outside of the cultural, historical, and spatial context. Even within the same culture, there can be different interpretations of one and the same colour, largely because we enter the communication process as individuals, although at the same time we retain all the characteristics of all groups we have ever belonged to.

Thinking about colours also raises questions – how is it possible that people used to paint the rainbow only in four colours in the past, or the sea on maps in green rather than blue? Why is green the favourite colour of the Irish Catholics while the Catholics in Bosnia reject it? Is the issue of colour not also a linguistic problem, since some languages only have three or four words for colours, while modern English has as many as eleven terms for the so-called simple colours?

Colours often behave like codes and it is not always easy to identify, isolate, or define them. We do not pay attention to them or take them as something important, something that “makes a difference.” Colour, however, also communicates directly. “Words must be translated into images in our mind. These images must be assembled, organized, and categorized so as to give meaning to the words.” (Trandafilović, 2006:77).


3. Interpreting and reading chromatic codes (colours)

Interpretation depends on our historical prejudices (Gadamer speaks about the fusion of horizons). In a drop of water, we can see a pearl or just a drop of water if we want to – as a Buddhist saying goes. But what we really see – that is a question with more than one answer. “Grass is not green, it only seems green,” as Korzybski would say. The question is not just “how do see something,” but also whether we really see “what we see.” The world is an illusion, it has no real existence – that is what is meant by the power of imagination (khayal), as Ibn Arabi once wrote.[22]

Signs in the process of interpretation generate other signs, and thus interpretation is an open and dynamic process with the potential of an “endless multiplication of meaning,” as Sonja Briski Uzelac has written ( Red is not red in itself. It is blood, revolution, suffering, and murder – depending on the interpretation. This colour has become significant for individuals, for nations, perhaps for the entire humanity in an inexplicable and unpredictable manner (Gheerbrant and Chevalier, 1987:XI-XII).

What is, in fact, interpretation? In the traditional sense, interpretation is often understood as deciphering (clarification), revealing the meaning of something that was previously concealed (and colour is concealment). The meaning was already given, it is only to be discovered. The new concept of interpretation follows Nietzsche: There are no facts per se, only our interpretations of the facts (interpretationalism and perspectivism). (Lavić, 2014:110)

We do not have any access to the world that is not subject to interpretation, be it in knowledge or in action, or anywhere else. The world is primarily constructed and structured through our human needs, abilities, and opportunities – and this relates both to our organic capacities and to the conceptual possibilities of linguistic representation. The world is understandable only insofar as it is built, structured, and formed by our own, human-made interpretational schemes, those that are found within us. Everything that we can comprehend and present as cognitive and active beings depends on interpretation (Lavić, 2014:111).

According to Professor Hasnija Murtagić Tuna, H. Heleren has listed dozens of possible interpretations, and this can lead us to the idea that science itself has come to a dead end (

The term “interpretation” covers a wide field of meanings, all of which can be reduced to decoding a text, a symbol, or behaviour in order to determine their significance. In a restrictive sense, under the name of hermeneutics, it was in the focus of research in the philosophy of Heidegger and Gadamer (Treccani, 2009:1113). The concept of interpretation is also found in Aristotle – De interpretatione (Gr. Περί ἑρμηνείας) is the Latin name of one of his treatises collected in the Organon on how to formulate the definition of affirmation as “a claim that ascribes something to something” (De interpretatione, VI, 17 a 25-6).

From the 1930s, Wittgenstein radically opposed formal and strictly denotational approaches to the theory of meaning, inaugurating the type of research in which the concept of interpretation played a determining role (Philosophical Research, Post, 1953). Referring to the theory of signs, as opposed to the theory of representation, a sign model was postulated that indicated that the image did not have a meaning in itself, without an “audience” ready to interpret it. Goldmann has observed that the same or similar facts could have completely opposite or different meanings in different contexts, and that their study was valid only if included in the dynamic whole of the social and historical events that they were part of (Goldmann, 1962:22). In one social context, the red colour will be understood as a symbol of communism, in another it will be perceived as one of the basic colours in the Croatian flag, and so on.

Uspensky has asked how we look at something, that is, how we see it from the outside, how it is seen “from within,” and how to reconcile the two. He speaks of merging the inner and outer points of view (Uspensky 1973). This merging can be displayed on several levels:

  1. The ideological plane (we see red and it conveys the idea of the revolution);
  2. The psychological plane (red as a colour that stands for passion, energy, aggression);
  3. The level of spatial and temporal perspective (red in historical Croatia and red during the presidency of Jadranka Kosor, who often spoke of “red danger”); and
  4. The phraseological context (red like blood, red like a lobster).

Aristotle saw a certain coincidence, and even parallels between colours and flavours. According to him, in fact, colours were produced by mixing white and black, just as flavours were produced by mixing sweet and bitter (Aristotle, 1981:14). Gombrich has criticized John Ruskin’s theory of the innocent eye (the theory of direct perception). He (Gombrich) claims that there is no innocent eye that sees an object as it is; instead, what we see depends on the previous knowledge of the observer and the established system of classification. An individual is prepared in advance as to how he or she should understand the codes, signs, and background of the story to be interpreted. Visual perception can be interpreted only by means of impulses reaching the retina in accordance with the previous knowledge, memory, and expectations. Gombrich has observed that the conclusion process is an extremely important element of perception. What we perceive is always conditioned by norms, habits, knowledge, convictions, and feelings. (Kudiš, 1990:9).

What connects Gombrich, Gaudman, and Bryson is the opinion that every seeing is preceded by a notion of the things we see. All three authors (with slight deviations) speak of how visual perception depends on the expectations, the mental orientation of the observer, his or her experience, and the knowledge of the world in which they live (http: //www.prelom All that causes visual pleasure to the viewer becomes an open space of transformation and interchange of meanings between the visual object and the viewer (Bryson, 1983:12).

For centuries, we have known how to think and watch, paint, believe, and respect, and we never stop to think how and to what extent we are defined therein by our technique of creating closed circles of self-justifying our own beliefs – as Sead Alić has argued, referring to McLuhan (Alić, 2009:110).

We are returning here to the assertion that colours are – ideas. With ideas, and therefore also with colours, we create our beliefs and seek to justify them. We do this in various ways: by closing the circle and then colouring it in red, blue, white, or green – the way it suits us in a particular context. Each colour individually is rather complex and peculiar in its own symbolism. Wittgenstein wrote about the logic of colours from a philosophical standpoint, not mentioning the non-verbal communication of the speakers. He nevertheless intuitively acknowledged it, although his intention was not to encourage thinking about colours as a mode of non-verbal communication. It is believed that the human eye can perceive about 160 different shades in the colour spectrum. However, some colour analysts claim that there are over 12000 different tones. “If we move to the field of computer sciences, we will find out that there are 16 million tones on a colour screen. Of course, these are merely degrees, slight hues of tones and intensities of the primary colours. Nevertheless, each of these colours can have a different effect on the individual – emotional and mental” (Šarenac, 2001:16). It is, therefore, indisputable that colour has an influence on humans – the question is only to what extent, which colour, and how strong the reaction is (whether it is strong enough to make an individual react in the communication process or not).

When it comes to colours, the transfer of information takes place even faster than by means of complex images, because colours can be noticed “from the corner of our eye” and make us subconsciously change our mode of communication in the process, without even knowing that we have seen it. “This colour has become significant for individuals, for nations, perhaps for the entire humanity in an inexplicable and unpredictable manner” (Gheerbrant and Chevalier, 1987:XI-XII).

Denotation refers to the iconic level, while connotation is related to the so-called “plastic” level. The connotation value of red, for example, depends on the cultural context and situations. A European will perceive THAT red as a SIGN of danger, a Chinese as a sign of “lucky fate.” Today, there is an increasing opinion that language and image have an equal importance in understanding meaning. Both of these codes can actually or potentially function by themselves (individually). It is not uncommon to see a perfume advertisement in which one does not hear a single word (language is missing), yet we understand the message.

Ancient Croatian or Slavic words for colour were mast (“grease”) (cf. masnica for a bruise, or the phrase premazan svim mastima – “smeared with all sorts of grease” for being particularly cunning) and kvet (in modern Russian cvet) (Gluhak, 1993:139). Modern Croatian uses the Turkish word boya, while the Italian word colore comes from Latin colorem, related to the verb celare, “hide”. Thus, colour is something that covers or hides (Zingarelli, 2000:400; Kapović, 2009:163; Devoto, 1968:88). The German word for colour is Farbe, which comes from the medieval German varwe, or the Old German farwa, which is associated with the meaning “sprinkled, stained” (Duden, 2007:552).


4. The physics of colour

In 1611, Dominis noticed that a sequence of colours appeared when light passed through a prism at a sharper angle: red, green, and blue, which preceded Newton’s discovery. Refraction of light had already been observed by Cleomedes around 40 BC, but it was only Willebrord Snellius around 1621 who established the law of fracture. Robert Hooke also dealt with this phenomenon, and the true founder of the wave theory is Christiaan Huygens: According to the wave theory, the speed of light in water is smaller than in the air. The corpuscular theory claimed the opposite. Newton wavered for a long time between the two theories and eventually opted for the corpuscular one (Supek, 2004:89). When Newton observed colourless sunlight shining through a crystalline prism, it split into red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and violet rays, from which he concluded that sunlight was a mixture of rainbow colours.[23] Newton’s colour spectrum brought various changes: in the colour system, red was no longer situated halfway between black and white, green was finally understood as a shade of blue and yellow, warm and cold colours were distinguished, and so on (Brusatin; 2013:13). Goethe believed that Newton was wrong. Besides Goethe, there was a whole group of scientists who held that the colour phenomenon must imply and involve some emotional and philosophical components, and that one could not explain colour and light solely through mechanistic theories, as Newton did. In this whole story about colours, our organism, that is, our apparatus of vision, plays a very important role, in cooperation with the luminous stimulations coming from outside – as Goethe claimed. He conducted a series of experiments with coloured shadows and proved that our eye was intensely involved in the reconstruction of the colour sensation (a red square will result in one shade if the background below it is blue, and in a slightly different tone if it is, for example, orange).


5. A new colour order

As Giovanni Piana has argued, colour speaks and we must try to understand what it is telling us (Piana, 1996:35). Colour is a sign, colour is a symbol, colour is a signal (Trstenjak, 1978:151). The language of colour is configured as a particularly symbolic speech, a product of suggestions that do not arise from rational observation alone (Pedirota, 1996:31). The ancient Egyptians denoted the term “colour” and “being” with the same term (iwen). For this ancient people, the word “colour” signified people, beings, or characters ( In order to supply a deity with additional power and emphasize its mystery, that deity was said to be of some strange, indeterminate colour (Lurker, 1990:93).

There is not even a consensus on how many primary colours there are. Berlin and Kay are of the opinion that each language knows a certain number of names for colours, and this number ranges from two to eleven (Lyons, 2003:211). If a language knows less than these eleven terms, then one can call it a lexical restriction, which is nevertheless precisely defined (Berlin, Kay, 1997:21-56).

One of the world’s most famous paintings, The Arnolfini Wedding by Jan van Eyck, is an illustrative example of how, from a temporal distance, a single colour can be interpreted in several ways and how we can never be absolutely sure about the accuracy of interpretation. The Arnolfini Wedding is generally believed to show an actual wedding, with the girl being a genuine bride, since in the old times brides were dresses in green gowns. For this painting, the artist used the rather expensive malachite pigment. Michel Pastoureau has offered several possible answers to the question why the girl in the picture is wearing green:

  1. The girl comes from a lower social layer, that is, she is certainly not a noblewoman. In Italy before the 17th century, the colour of the middle estate – merchants, craftsmen, peasants – was green. She may have belonged to a wealthy merchant family, but certainly not to a noble one.
  2. The girl is still unmarried. Perhaps she is about to get married and that is why she is dressed in green.
  3. The woman in the picture is actually an elderly prostitute. This solution is possible, but not highly probable, since she seems like a younger person. But in Germany and Italy elderly prostitutes wore green in the 14th and 15th centuries.
  4. The girl is called Elizabeth. Quite possible, as Pastoreau claims. Saint Elizabeth was almost always depicted wearing a green dress, so it is possible that this garment was associated with someone called Elizabeth.
  5. The girl comes from a noble family with blue and green colours in its coat of arms, and she is depicted wearing green in order to associate her with that family. At that time, noble girls often wore garments that resembled the coat of arms of their families in terms of colour.
  6. The painting shows a scene happening early in May. In the 14th and 15th centuries, girls wore green at the beginning of spring, especially on May 1.
  7. The girl is pregnant. In medieval Europe, women who could not get pregnant often wore green, which “guaranteed” the fulfilment of their greatest dream. Saint Margaret was proclaimed a saint protector of pregnant women and a green dress became a preferred object.

The colour spectrum that is “in effect” today runs in this order: purple, indigo, blue, green, yellow, orange, and red. In the old colour system, which was in use during the Middle Ages, this order looked like this: white, yellow, orange, red, green, blue, purple, and black. Everything depends on the social circumstances. It is impossible to analyse colours outside the cultural and temporal/spatial context. The feudal era caused profound mutations in the chromatic systems, causing the breakdown of the old system based on white, black, and red, thanks to the introduction of new colours such as purple, green, and especially blue. The medieval period can be divided into two chromatic periods. The first was before the mid-12th century, when blue was still absent from ceremonial garments, as it was in some way reserved for working uniforms (at that time, blue was still considered a shade of black). At the turn of the 13th century, there was a Blue Revolution.

“Royal blue” is a colour traditionally associated with Charlemagne. However, the first king who wore a blue cloak was Philip II Augustus and thus he was the first “blue” king (at least in Western Europe, because we have no reliable facts about other parts of the world). During the latter part of his rule (after returning from the Crusades), he developed a particular predilection for blue vestments, and that is when the term “royal blue” became current (Pastoreau – lectures at Louvre, November 15, 2012). In the collective imagination of that era, blue was the colour of heaven and thus wearing blue meant “bringing some heaven down to the earth.” Red, which had previously been the dominant colour, thus obtained a significant rival. The plant called “dyer’s woad” or “glastum” (Isatis tinctoria) was henceforth used to produce blue dye. The entire French land of Provence was planted with this plant. Soon, the skies would finally become blue in paintings. Blue was also associated with concepts such as noble, heavenly, divine, and thus God’s light was henceforth also depicted as blue; the Virgin was blue and His Majesty the King of France was also dressed in blue.

The new (colourist) social agreements established that water (the sea) was actually blue, which was confirmed only in the 17th century. Previously, the sea was painted green in geographic maps. Since forests were also green, one had to distinguish somehow between the sea and the mountains, and the decision was made that the sea would be painted blue. Also, the development of heraldry contributed significantly to the diffusion of blue across Europe, and thus it became the preferred colour of the 17th century. Its greatest popularity, however, started with the Jeans as a sign of liberalism in 1968.

Research done after World War II in Europe, the USA, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand has shown that, when it comes to colours, blue is number one on the list of preferences (for nearly 50% of Westerners, it is their favourite colour), followed by green, white, and red. It is interesting to note that these studies show that tastes change somewhere at the age of eight. Participants who are younger than eight prefer red, followed by yellow and white. Those older than eight prefer mostly cold colours, same as the adults. The situation changes if we move from the West to the East or the South: in South America, for example in Brazil (as well as in Spain, which is a European exception), red is the first on the list, followed by blue. The favourite colour of the Japanese is white, followed by black and yellow (Pastoreau 1987:9-12).

Just as there are favourite colours, so there are (unfortunately) undesirable ones. Green is disliked by the Protestants in Glasgow as well as by Croats in the western part of Mostar. For someone blue may be associated with the “Vlachs”, red with Communism, and so on.

We seem to be heading for a period of “social colour blindness,” which is already present in cities such as Belfast and Glasgow, and some of the symptoms of this “syndrome” are noticeable also in Mostar. This “chromophobia” appears as a cultural disorder expressed as animosity toward individual colours.


6. Conclusion

It should be noted that signs produce various meanings, not just one per sign (the polyvalence of sign and message). The function of a sign is to transfer ideas to us through a message (a red flag calls for the revolution, white for surrender, etc.). A red carnation may be a sign (for example, when attached to a door) informing us that the entry is free. A red carnation attached to the collar means something else – it is a symbol of the revolution. Colours often behave as codes, and it is not always easy to decipher, isolate, or define them. Man is not only a rational being, but also an irrational one; and this fact allows for his behaviour to be affected not only by rational but also by irrational means (even more effectively with the latter). It can be manipulated in different ways, including through colour.

We belong to different races, i.e. colours: white, black, yellow, red. All our reality is painted, even the political one – some vote for the Red, others for the Green or the Blue; the Black and the White seem rather vague.

Rorty has written that the way out is in nihilism. The “extremists” will say that our solution is in absolute colour blindness. Do we have to give up the beauty of colour richness only because some colours disturb us – are black, white, and grey, the colours of Protestant reformism, the only coloristic remedy for our illness? It seems that there is a long way before us if we want to reach the right hermeneutical dimension – an empathic, personal, and conscious acceptance of others, with a complete understanding and developed tolerance of difference as a benefit, rather than a disadvantage, as it now seems to be.


[21]  The archetypal number four is not only the basis of Empedocles’ theory of colours, but also of his fundamental theory of the four elements – fire, water, air, and earth – to which it referred. The theory of the four elements actually dominated the natural sciences, especially alchemy, until the beginning of the modern era.

[22]  “The world is an illusion: it has no real existence. And this is what is meant by ‘imagination’ (khayal). For you just imagine that it (i.e., the world) is an autonomous reality quite different from and independent of the absolute Reality, while in truth it is nothing of the sort… Know that you yourself are an imagination. And everything that you perceive and say to yourself, ‘this is not me’, is also an imagination. So that the whole world of existence is imagination within imagination.” Cited after: Toshihiko Izutsu, “Dream and Reality,” in: Sufism and Taoism: A Comparative Study of Key Philosophical Concepts (Berkeley, Los Angeles, and London: University of California Press, 1983), 7.

[23]  Newton’s treatise on “Optics”, published in 1704, was a very important moment in the history of understanding colours. The experiment with the camera obscura and passing the light through a crystalline prism dates, in fact, from 1666, with the first decomposition of light into seven colours. Newton decided on a scale of seven main colours and a number of gradations inside them. White light, he explained, was a mixture of something that he called corpusculum (Luzatto, Pompas, 2001:44).





Aristotele (1981) La melanconia dell’uomo di genio, a cura di C. Angelino e E. Salvaneschi, Il Melangolo, Genoa

Berlin, B., Kay, P. (1969) Basic Color Terms. Their Universality and Evolution, Berkeley and Los Angeles, University of California Press

Brusatin, M. (2013) Storia dei colori, Einaudi, Turin

Bryson N. (1983) Vision and Painting: The Logic of the Gaze, Macmillan, London

Devoto, G. (1968) Avviamento alla etimologia italiana (Dizionario etimologico), Felice Le Monnier, Florence

Gadamer, G. H. (20042) Truth and Method, Continuum, London and New York

Gheerbrant, A., Chevalier, J. (1982) Dictionnaire des Symbols, Editions Robert Laffont, Paris

Goldmann, L. (1959) Recherches dialectiques, Gallimard, Paris

Guimaraes, L. (2003) As cores na midia, Annablume, Sao Paolo

Kay, P., Berlin, B,. Maffi, L., Merrifield, W.R. (1997): “Color Naming across Languages,” in: C.L. Hardin and L. Maffi. (eds.), Cambridge University press

Kress, G., Van Leeuwen, T. (2006) Reading Images, Routledge, London and New York

Lavić, S. (2014) Metodološke rasprave [Essays on methodology], FPN, Sarajevo

Pastoureau, M. (2006) Il piccolo libro dei colori, Einaudi, Turin

Pastoureau, M. (1987) L uomo e il colore, Giunti, Florence

Pedirota, L. (1996) Il colore, simboli e archetipi, Mediterranee, Rome

Piana, G. (1982) Colori e suoni, Unicopli, Milan

Radojković, M. and Đorđević, T. (2005) Osnove komunikologije [Introduction to communicology], Čigoja, Belgrade

Sun, H. (1995) I segreti dei colori, Sonzogno, Milan

Supek, I. (2004) Valovi – Povijest fizike [Waved: The history of physics], Školska knjiga, Zagreb

Šarenac, D. (2001) Simboli boja i boje simbola [The symbols of colours and the colours of symbols], Samneks, Belgrade

Trandafilović, I. (2006) Ime, boje, logo [Name, colours, logo], Bigz, Belgrade

Trstenjak, A. (1978) Čovek i boje [Man and colours], Nolit, Belgrade

Uspensky, B. (1973) A Poetics of Composition, University of California Press, Berkeley and Los Angeles

Wittgenstein, L. (2007) Remarks on Colour, University of California Press, Berkeley and Los Angeles



Alić, S. (2009) “Perspektiva i mediji. Od Platona do McLuhana”[Perspective and the media: From Plato to McLuhan], in: Vizualna konstrukcija kulture, Zagreb

Bozzi, P. (1999) “Introduzione all'edizione italiana”in: Gibson, Un approccio ecologico alla percezione visiva, Milan

Kapović, M. (2009) “Boje u jeziku” [Colours in language], in: Moć boja, Etnografski muzej, Zagreb


Online sources: (last accessed on January 15, 2016)

Caroline PaganiLeitmotiv - 1 – 2001 (last accessed on March 13, 2015)

Les changeurs Quentin Metsys, Le Changeur et sa femme (1514). Paris, musée du Louvre. © RMN-GP/Musée Louvre/Gérard Blot, (last accessed on February 12, 2016) Ibn Arebi, (last accessed on May 13, 2015) (last accessed on June 1, 2016)

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Pastoureau, M. (lectures at Louvre, December 13, 2012), (last accessed on March 18, 2016)


Interpretacija kromatskih kodova kroz historiju i
u različitim modernim kontekstima




Boje su presudne kod onoga što možemo nazvati „vizualizacijom identiteta“. Brojne su naučne discipline koje se (između ostalog) bave i bojama. Kromatika kao disciplina /posvećena bojama u komunikaciji/ je novijeg datuma. Društveni kontekst čini boju značajnom, daje joj socijalnu definiciju, smisao; stvara kodove i vrijednosti. Poruke koje stižu do nas sadrže različite kodove, a oni mogu biti dominantni (prihvatamo ih po defaultu), pregovarački (prihvatamo ih djelimično) i opozicionalni (odbijamo ih). Ako u jednoj poruci mijenjamo boju (zastava, automobil, dres), mi želimo promijeniti i poruku. Nesporazumi nastaju kada dvije strane u komunikaciji različito shvataju jedan znak, poruku (tzv. „šumovi u komunikaciji“ po Schramu). Do konflikta nas najčešće mogu dovesti razlike u interpretaciji činjenica.


Ključne riječi: poruka, kod, znak, boja, kromatika, interpretacija, komunikacija.




 8(15)#18 2019

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Prethodno priopćenje
Preliminary communication
Primljeno: 19.12.2018.



Iva Paska

Zagreb, Hrvatska
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Digital Media Environments and their Implications: Instagram

Puni tekst: pdf (439 KB), English, Str. 2347 - 2364





At the beginning of the 21st century, we find ourselves at the threshold of a new level in the development of digital media. Digital media environments are going beyond the scope of fixed and isolated social environments to become more and more integrated in the everyday lives of individuals up to the point at which it is difficult to distinguish between being connected to the internet and living in the real world. Social networks contribute to this phenomenon since they represent a digital environment within which we are becoming increasingly immersed at the global level. The focus of this text is Instagram as a network whose functioning is organized around the visual element. The aim of this paper is to consider the implications of digital environments by using Instagram as an example within the framework of the theoretical and conceptual framework of digital media environments.


Key words: digital media, digital media environments, social networks, internet, Instagram.



The current postmodern era is an era of omnipresent digital media. These media are examined in different theoretical conceptualizations and in different ways, but the focus of this text will deliberately be on the theoretical concept of digital environments. We thus focus on the difference between the modern context of digital media at the beginning of the 21st century and the period in which mass media reigned, which includes the early era of the internet. Contrary to previous periods of media development, modern digital media environments have become omnipresent owing to the new information and communications technology (ICT). They are the result of certain technological characteristics of the new era in internet development – high-speed internet service provided by broadband connections and the possibility of accessing the internet on mobile devices so that a fixed point of access is no longer required. This new era in internet development also introduces a different software architecture which functions on the principles of Web 2.0. Web 2.0 principles involve a software architecture organized on the principles of a participative platform, where content is created by the users themselves and the architecture improves with the increasing number of users creating and modifying content from various sources, consequently creating the “network effect”.[24] Taking all of this into account, these digital media no longer have to be consumed separate from other social activities, they create media environments that are increasingly integrated into the everyday life of a modern individual. Furthermore, the last couple of years saw the development of ICT and the so-called “internet of things”; devices are connected through a network, not only to the internet, but also among each other, thus creating a digital infrastructure for the collection of data or managing devices through sensors, enabling the transmission and processing data or providing suggestions based on these. This development additionally integrates devices connected to the internet into the everyday social activities of the individual at the spatial level as well. This media configuration significantly changes the ways in which digital media mediate experience. Modern digital media environments silently function in the background of social reality in a way that is becoming less and less visible and social reality is becoming increasingly dependent on their functioning. This level of digital media integration within social life therefore requires a new theoretical and conceptual framework for analysing media.

The beginnings of this society are examined through different concepts by different theorists. One of these for example is Jenkins’s concept of convergence, in the sense of new media depending on mass, data and telecommunication technologies.[25] This type of society is characterized by new media being more intertwined in such a way that media content becomes a process unobstructedly flowing through them and it is possible to access the same content through different media.[26] Jan Van Dijk calls this a “network society”; a society whose functioning increasingly relies on the infrastructure of social and media networks and these networks become primary forms of organization at all levels.[27] Manuel Castells’s concept of a “network society” posits that networks are becoming the main units of organization and key activities are organized through ICT creating a “a space of flows”; the material support of time-sharing social practices, functioning through flows.[28] Scott Lash talks about the “omnipresence of social life being mediated through the media”.[29] The scope of digitally mediated social activities really is pervasive today, which is also confirmed by statistical indicators. Eurostat data for the EU region on digital habits in 2017 show that 84% of individuals at EU-28 level aged between 16 and 74 used the internet, of which 72% on a daily basis.[30] In Croatia a percentage of 67% individuals aged between 16 and 74 used the internet in 2017, of which 58% on a daily basis.[31] A total of 65% EU-28 users used the internet on mobile phones or other mobile devices far from work or home, while in Croatia this percentage was 51%.[32] The data is similar at the global level. According to a global research conducted by PEW in 39 countries, 72% of people owned a smartphone in the period 2017-2018 within 17 countries PEW considers to be developed economies, and 86-87% of people used smartphones or the internet at least occasionally.[33] At the same time in 19 countries PEW sees as developing economies or countries, 64% of people used the internet or owned smartphones in the period 2017-2018 (an increase compared to 42% in 2013) and 42% individuals owned a smartphone (an increase compared to 24% in 2013).[34] Furthermore, according to indicators measured through the DESI Index, there was a high percentage of economic activities online in 2017 at EU level; 68% of EU population bought goods or services online, 61% used e-banking services and 21% used apps for booking accommodation from other individuals online.[35] According to data from the Croatian Bureau of Statistics in 2017, 50% of internet users used e-banking services, and 37% used the internet for selling products and services.[36] Using the internet for information and communication is also widely spread; in Croatia 91% internet users mostly use it for reading newspapers and magazines, 88% for finding information on products and services, 72% use electronic mail, and 70% participate in social networks.[37] According to data provided by the DESI Index in 2017, a total of 66% of the population used e-government services in 2017, and 22% used healthcare services through the internet.[38] Although Croatia lags behind the EU-28 average in some types of internet usage, statistical indicators for EU-28 and Croatia confirm theoretical conceptualizations on the increased dependence of society on networks supported by ICT technologies, which is also true at the global level. Digital channels are becoming more integrated in social reality, in the context of staying informed, as well as participating in social and economic activities or realizing civil rights.

We may therefore conclude that modern digital environments require a new level of theoretical conceptualization. Living in the early era of internet when it was used in the privacy of one’s own home through a modem, certainly constitutes a different experience than consuming media content on a mobile phone while standing in line at a bank. The concept of digital environments highlights the individual phenomenological dimension of experience for the user and how network infrastructures are integrated in the everyday level of user experience. Modern media digital platforms are intertwined with our everyday social experience to such a degree that, at the phenomenological level of such an existence, it is difficult to determine the point at which being connected to the internet is separate from the experience of not being connected. Digital media are no longer just media, in the sense of isolated technological devices for the use of which it is necessary to remove oneself from one’s social life. On the contrary, when technology is separated from the physical location of use, which is the case in accessing the internet on mobile devices or connecting the urban infrastructure to the internet, digital media become integrated within social functioning to such a degree that they literally become – environments. It is precisely the fact they are not dependent on an actual physical location, but can exist within the social infrastructure, that gives them characteristics of an environment. And since at the macro-level they have become increasingly integrated in the social structure, they become more necessary at the micro-level in order to participate in social activities, which introduces a new level of integration in the everyday life of the modern individual. Since an increasing number of social subsystems depend on digital technologies, which are entwined with complex local and global infrastructures, cultures, societies and environments, a lack of participation in them does not represent only a technological problem, but also the problem of social inclusion.[39] In societies whose functioning largely depends on digital technologies, a lack of participation in digital environments is translated into social exclusion. For example, today social networks are increasingly used for job searching and employment, there are e-services for participating in realizing civil rights or settling civic duties, economic activities such as buying, selling or booking accommodation are also increasingly made online, as shown by previously mentioned statistical indicators. We can assume that for generations growing up in such environments, this type of using technology will be so common, they will be unable to even imagine different ways of functioning, but also that living in these media environments will have implications for the development of the human mind, to an extent that is difficult to fully ascertain at this moment.

In this text we shall look more closely at social networks as an example of such digital environments.

Social networks can be defined as digital environments in which content is completely or partially created by its users through using the technological platform enabling communication with other users. Social networks are part of pervasive social digital environments for which we can claim to have encouraged the spread of these networks, given the frequency of their usage. According to data by the Croatian Bureau of Statistics for early 2017, social networks were the most common purposes of internet usage in Croatia (71%).[40] According to Eurostat data, the percentage at EU level is 67%.[41] Research by PEW determined a rising trend of using social networks at the global level, and data from 2017 shows that two thirds or more of the adult population in developed countries use social networks; this includes data for the U.S. (69%), Australia (69%), Canada (68%), Sweden (67%), United Kingdom (60%), France (53%), Germany (40%), Israel (68%) and South Korea (69%).[42] However, countries considered to be developing economies also have a high rate of social network usage among the adult population and these percentages continue to grow, in countries such as Vietnam (53%), the Philippines (49%), Jordan (75%), Lebanon (72%), Argentina (65%), Chile (78%), Nigeria (42%), Ghana (39%) and Kenya (39%).[43] These statistical indicators imply an increasing level of integration of social networks within the everyday life of the modern individual. In analyzing this phenomenon in 2011, sociologist Sherry Turkle noted how in modern society, the individual is constantly connected to a mobile device and to his/her social contacts towards which the mobile device serves as a portal.[44] In this way modern individuals actually never leave their home emotionally, which is seen in the phenomenon of constant connectedness.[45] She examines the implications of such a situation for the modern self which finds it usual to be distant from the place it physically occupies, at the same time experiencing a virtual and almost physical simultaneity of the place it is does not occupy, concluding that the new standard of the modern self is the state of being “connected and absent”.[46] We might actually say that the state of constant connectedness through mobile phones and social networks is normalized, especially in the context of young generations growing up in these digital environments. This text aims to determine some implications for a life in such an environment.


Determinants and implications of digital environments on the example of Instagram

It is clear that modern digital environments increasingly focus on visual content. A new social network in which the visual principle is at the basis of its functioning appeared in 2010 on the wave of broadband internet connection combined with smartphones with better cameras. User activities on the Instagram social network are completely organized around the visual element. Posting photos on user profiles is at the centre of this networks’ functioning, and they are posted by the users themselves. Users can “follow” other people’s profiles, meaning they determine on their profiles how they will view posts by other users. After the user posts a photograph, it becomes instantly visible to all other owners of profiles following a particular profile, and to a lesser extent to those who do not follow it. It should be noted that the functioning of Instagram is mainly organized around interactions between different profile owners on the topic of posting photos. Each posted photograph offers other users with the possibility to comment or “like” the photo – a social practice through which users show one another they appreciate the photos posted. But textual elements come second on Instagram and we can say that social interaction on that social network is based on posting photographs. Ever since this social network appeared, its popularity has been rising quickly, especially among younger age groups. It is indicative that the number of Instagram users reached one billion in June 2018.[47] Statistics on internet usage from the U.S. show that 71% of young people aged 18-24 use Instagram, of which 60% visit it on a daily basis, and 51% use it several times a day.[48] Statistical indicators show that younger generations, i.e. generations growing up in pervasively digital environments, use this social network the most. What are the implications of being immersed in these digital environments?

In examining this phenomenon we should turn to predictions made by the philosopher Paul Valery as early as 1928, when he noted that in the future artworks will achieve a sort of omnipresence in a way that it will be possible to invoke them at a place where someone is using some kind of device; Just as water, gas, and electricity are brought into our houses from far off to satisfy our needs in response to a minimal effort, so we shall be supplied with visual or auditory images, which will appear and disappear at a simple movement of the hand, hardly more than a sign. And just as we are used to, if not entrapped by, various types of energies flowing into our homes, we shall consider it perfectly normal to receive ultrafast variations or oscillations collected by our organs.”[49] If we read Valery in the context of Instagram which is available on mobile phones, his prediction is literally delineated – the photographs which often are artworks, are available to users with a simple hand gesture on the screen of their mobile phone, disappearing just as easily. It is also absolutely impossible to examine the implications of the developing new media environments without taking into account the theories of Marshall McLuhan who stated in 1970s that medium is a message since it changes the speed, manner and scope of human actions and relationships.[50] That is to say, technology is not neutral – its design changes the principles of social functioning to a high degree. Other theorists later offered similar theories. Neil Postman notes in the 1990s that the use of technology is somewhat limited by its own design.[51] At the same time, users also adapt technology to their own needs using it in certain ways.[52] For example, the social phenomenon of “influencers” (from the word “influential” implying popularity) represents an unintended result of using social networks created by the users themselves. Influencers are individuals who have the power to influence social trends through social networks, mainly Instagram and Facebook. They have a large number of so-called “followers” on social networks, i.e. other users of this app who follow their Instagram profiles. Due to the large number of followers of each influencer, his/her profile represents a potential platform for communicating towards a great number of other users. The position of an influencer has therefore developed into a new social status in the last couple of years. We might even call it a profession, since influencers make money through their posts, by integrating products into images thus becoming a communication channel for advertising products. Economy reacts fast to technological innovations it deems effective and companies were quick to incorporate these new social practices into their business. According to Eurostat data for 2017, a high percentage of companies in EU-28 use social networks, and this percentage has significantly increased compared to 2013.[53] In 2017, a percentage of 45% companies used at least one social network, of which 84% used it to develop their brand and advertise products. These percentages show an increase of 17% compared to 2013 and have increased more than the use of any other type of social media, such as blogs.[54] Up to 40% companies used social media in order to develop their brand or advertise their products.[55] Managing an Instagram profile has become a new profession in recent years, and advertising through social networks and the use of social networks for marketing purposes is developing into a common social practice. Social practices of collecting and analysing data users leave behind when using social networks have also developed, and this data is then used for predicting future user behaviour and upcoming economic trends. These are some of the economic implications in the development of the digital environments of social networks. We might ask whether predictions of user behaviour based on their behaviour within digital environments shall become an everyday social practice in the future and will it perhaps spread outside the scope of social networks?

I shall also review some cognitive implications of spending a large amount of time in digital environments oriented towards the visual element. If we take into account the frequency of spending time in these digital environments, what consequences might this have on the development of the human brain? The neuroplasticity of the human brain makes it highly likely that the brain will also adapt to the new types of modern digital environments.[56] Recent research do point to changes in the functioning of the human brain in relation to being exposed to digital networks in the last twenty years, and this includes changes in the way we read in the sense of more time being spent on searching and “scanning”, i.e. going through the text quickly, looking for key words, nonlinear reading and more selective reading with less time being spent on deep and concentrated reading as well as a reduced ability for continued concentration[57], lack of focus on the abstract and increased focus on the concrete.[58] However the relation between the frequency of using digital media environments and an increased cognitive ability to do several activities at the same time (“multitasking”) has also been determined.[59] On the other hand, psychological research shows that informal learning environments consisting of television, videogames and the internet, create students with lower cognitive skills levels – they strengthen the visual-spatial intelligence and weaken the high-level cognitive processes; abstract words, awareness, reflection, inductive reasoning in problem-solving, critical thinking and imagination, while listening to the radio and reading nurture imagination and the development of higher cognitive skills.[60] Taking all of this into account as well as the visual and spatial character of digital environments, the question is whether continued activity in digital environments with fast-changing visual stimuli and a lack of deep content shall become the new norm for the mind of the future? Will the brain of the future be better in visual-spatial orientation and less prone to abstract and critical thinking? Abstract thinking is necessary in order to add characteristics to objects and think about them on a more complex level, separate from the objects themselves. We must ask ourselves whether the reduced capability of this type of thinking will result in reduced implications for the capacity of analysing more complex ideas as well as the agency of the human subject.

According to a research by the Royal Institute of Mental Health in the UK, on a sample of more than 1400 young people aged between 14 and 24, there are some other problematic implications in using Instagram. Based on the consequences it has on the health and wellbeing of young people, Instagram has been ranked as the social network with the highest level of negative consequences for mental health compared to all other social networks.[61] Young people graded their health and wellbeing in relation to the use of each social network with marks ranging from -2 to +2, after which the average mark was calculated for every network – Instagram was the last, i.e. the fifth on this list. Factors deemed relatively more positive in relation to Instagram were: self-expression (expressing one’s own feelings, thoughts, ideas), self-identity (the ability to define who a person is), emotional support (empathy and compassion by families and communities), community building (feeling like a part of a community of like-minded people). But what is problematic is the increased number of negative factors with higher values in relation to Instagram; sleep (the quality and quantity of sleep), body image (how a person feels in relation to one’s own body), the so-called “fear of missing out” or FOMO – the feeling that a person must remain connected to the internet because otherwise he/she worries things are happening without him/her, bullying (threatening or violent behaviour towards someone), anxiety (the feelings of worry, nervousness or discomfort).[62] The concluding report from this research therefore provides strong recommendations for public policies, among which significant ones in the context of using Instagram include the recommendation to integrate warnings on the excessive use of the network in case of a longer period of usage, the recommendation on marking photographs which have been digitally manipulated, and the recommendation to identify users who might have mental health issues and discretely point them to potential sources of psychological support.[63] This is the only currently available research carried out on a larger sample in relation to Instagram and points to some problematic implications of using this social network as well as recommendations aiming to reduce negative implications.

And what are the implications of such digital social environments in the sense of social relations? Results of a qualitative research I carried out in 2014 as part of my doctoral thesis, among 50 young people in Croatia aged between 20 and 30, examining types of modern digital technologies usage, have shown that digital channels are highly integrated in the lives of young adults in Croatia in relation to friendships and the way they use them for being constantly connected to friends that are geographically not far away and for easing the friendships where there is less physical contact due to unfavourable structural circumstances such as moving to another country or less possibilities of spending time together due to different obligations.[64] Subjects stressed the possibility of shared online activities as an aid in maintaining friendships but added the inadequacy of these types of relationships without at least some physical interaction.[65] However, in relation to digital media being integrated in their lives, it seemed indicative that they considered digital channels as a key way for arranging and maintaining relationships in case of short- and long-term physical separation.[66] We should highlight that at the time this research was conducted, Instagram was still not as popular in Croatia as it is today, and in their responses subjects mainly focused on Facebook in relation to social networks. These results however provide us with a clearer context in relation to Instagram usage.[67] Research by Elisa Serafinelli in 2017 shows that sharing photographs on Instagram enables users to feel as if they are part of other people’s experiences and in this way contributes to maintaining relationships through the social practice of “telling stories” on someone’s experience.[68] Instagram is a social network that functions beyond the practice of merely sharing photographs since the practice of photograph sharing can also create social ties, social interactions and multimodal communication.[69] But to what a degree, at which levels and what types of relationships does Instagram create?

Research by Serafinelli has shown that most of her subjects who use Instagram see it as an unusual social network that shapes social relations mainly through visual communication as opposed to other verbally-centric networks[70], which supports the theoretical premise of this paper. Users see Instagram as a social network gathering users around similar interests which represents a basis for advancing online interaction.[71] However in this research subjects also highlighted that Instagram usage needs to be complemented by physical interaction.[72] In other words, subjects do not see Instagram as a means enough in itself for maintaining relationships, they believe it is possible to maintain relationships through it when combined with physical “face to face” interactions. The Serafinelli research further shows that subjects report reduced possibilities for communication on Instagram (since this app has a reduced possibility for sending messages), the superficial type of communication focusing on photographs and they see communication as mainly focused on shared interests.[73] Instagram is therefore seen as less efficient in maintaining relationships than Facebook and is viewed as potentially useful only for forming relationships, but combined with other social networks. Even in this case communication started on Instagram often moves to other social networks, most commonly Facebook or a “face to face” interaction in the physical world.[74] The previously mentioned research by the Royal Institute of Mental Health, where the factor of actual relations (maintaining relationships with friends) was given a relatively low value is also similar to these results.[75] Based on these findings we might wonder whether Instagram perhaps has a different function which does not necessarily relate to forming or maintaining relationships, but to sociability.

It is clear that posting photographs on Instagram has implications related to the social status of the individual. Posting a photograph on Instagram rarely functions as merely mediating information, it often communicates the social status of the individual. This communication is implicit, with two distinct levels. The first level is communicated through the content of the photograph – the location or material surroundings, clothes representing a certain status symbol thus reflecting the social status of the individual. However there is another implicit level of communication; the amount of social interaction beneath the posted photograph in the world of visual digital social environments also implies or transforms into a status position. For example, the number of followers on the influencers’ pages is seen as an indicator of their social status, and they are considered to be socially influential due to the communicative reach toward a great number of individuals. These social practices promote the phenomenon of normalizing social status based on the amount of information a person is capable of attracting within digital environments. What does this phenomenon imply?

It primarily points to a social reality in which influence on social networks is transformed into economic and consequently other types of social influence and shows the strength of the pervasive digital media environments currently developing in the real world. Furthermore, if the number of social interactions on social networks has come to reflect social status, then an increase of social interactions may come to represent the goal of social actors, with the purpose of improving social status. Self-representation on social networks requires strategic behaviour with the purpose of attracting interactions by other users and consequently increasing one’s own reputation.[76] In other words, self-representation on social networks necessarily includes the strategic creation of communication to the level that it becomes a necessary skill. Van Dijk and Van Deursen call this strategic creation of communication “impression management” and believe this type of behaviour requires certain skills.[77] Skills they define as necessary are the skills of attracting attention online and the skills of developing one’s profile.[78] The development of new professions can also be analyzed through the same prism of strategic self-representation. Just like influencers, these professions did not exist in the previous period of internet development, such as digital marketing strategists. This profession is the realization of strategic behaviour on social networks; the task of a digital strategist is to develop a strategy of social network posts in order to popularize a certain company or product. We can therefore conclude that the politics of self-representation in modern digital environments really becomes not only a socially desirable and necessary skill but even a profession. We can only ask ourselves whether such frames of functioning within a media environment provide for any type of reflexion.

At the beginning of the 20th century, Walter Benjamin wrote about the inescapable loss of uniqueness of an individual work of art in the process of its mechanical reproduction combined with the opening up of new possibilities of its use.[79] The questions Benjamin poses for the era of mechanical reproduction are still relevant: “How can we think about subjectivity in the era of digital reproduction? What does it mean to examine oneself after we have been absorbed by inauthentic and politicized images?”.[80] These questions gain a new dimension in the era of pervasive digital environments which arrange interaction around visual elements. This is no longer a matter of what it means to think of oneself but whether we are even capable of self-reflection and do we perceive that we are being absorbed by inauthentic images of digital environments such as Instagram? In other words, is there even a separate space within these modern digital environments and the human immersion in their pervasiveness, necessary for the development of reflexivity? This is followed by the issue of representation in relation to reality. Scenes in photographs posted on Instagram are mostly set up with great care. The photographs are also often beautified through configurations offered by the application itself. We might even say that self-representation on Instagram is becoming a normalized mode of communication – setting up a scene before shooting a photograph for Instagram is becoming a common social practice. We might claim, in the manner of sociologist Erving Goffman, who developed the idea of a social “background” i.e. the difference between the “foreground” of a social performance and the backstage in which the social actor prepares for a social performance[81], that the setting up of the background is normalized and is becoming the usual social practice in social networks that are organized around the visual element. This then posits the question on the discrepancy between self-presentation and reality as well as the normalization of this self-presentation and the potential negative consequences resulting from this. The following questions are also posed: How much space do we even have for reflexivity in the pervasive digital media environment which tends to use self-presentation as a necessary precondition for action, i.e. a skill needed for social inclusion? How much space is left for critical evaluation in digital media environments where self-presentation is the norm?


In conclusion

The purpose of this paper was to review some of the implications present in modern digital media environments now emerging. In order to establish the theoretical framework for digital media environments as part of which we examined Instagram, some determinants of these environments have been established. The most important feature is that digital media environments are increasingly present in everyday lives of individuals and are characterized by a high level of integration in the everyday social tissue which brings a different phenomenological experience than the experience of living in previous periods of media development. This experience is characterized by being immersed in media content throughout the day, to the level that tends to overflow into visual and spatial environments in which it has become increasingly difficult to ascertain the border between being connected to the internet and physical reality.

I examined some of the possible implications of such digital environments by using the example of Instagram. Economic implications are mostly present in the speed of integrating these environments in the field of economics and then in the creation of new professions embodying this politics of representation which becomes a precondition for participation in such environments. At the level of social relations, implications are reflected in structuring relationships through social networks; sharing activities organized around photographs is becoming a new social practice that structures relationships. However, the functioning of Instagram is difficult at the level of more intimate communication due to technical characteristics of reduced possibilities for communication through messages and therefore we can conclude that its function is focused more on communicating social status. Transforming the amount of interactions in digital social environments into social status in the real world as well represents another implication which further blurs the limits between virtual and physical reality. Also there is the normalization of a politics of self-representation to the level of its being turned into an increasingly necessary skill so that the individual might achieve certain aspects of social inclusion. We can assume that in such a social context, the capacity for critical reflection on digital environments is reduced. Young generations who mostly use such digital environments are the most vulnerable group in this context. We cannot disregard the negative cognitive implications, primarily those pointing to reduced capacities of higher cognitive processes such as abstract and critical thinking.

What position are we to take on these implications? How can we reduce their negative impact, when the increasing immersion in the omnipresent digital environments is unstoppable? One of the options in these times of overpowering visuality in the context of pervasive digital environments should be stressed over and over again – the role of social and humanistic sciences. Starting from Badiou’s idea that philosophy should start from a point outside the system it problematizes if it aims to provide the foundation to the modern world[82], we can state a similar case for humanities and social sciences. In their epistemological position which is (not necessarily) quantitative and positivist, they hold the possibility of maintaining a certain level of objectivity (or should we say subjectivity?) in relation to the increasing quantification and rationalization of a society in which implications of digital environments are normalized. It is precisely this distance that allows primarily the awareness and then the critical examination of the immersion within digital environments regardless of this phenomenon becoming increasingly unobserved. On the other hand in the context of increased integration of digital environments in everyday life, it is legitimate to ask how far can education in the social sciences and humanities reach. One of the implications of digital media transforming into environments is that human beings grow up while being immersed in them. At the same time this also means that the encounter with digital environments within the everyday framework happens before these individuals reach the education system which should provide them with the tools for critical thinking upon these, and we might expect this to result in a lack of critical separation necessary for the analysis of digital environments outside the reference framework they establish. We should therefore conclude that education on the usage of digital environments, including the critical reflection on these, should be incorporated in an early phase of the education system. Also, the possibilities of incorporating a critical approach to usage should be considered within the digital environments themselves. This requires the participation of social structures with the means of regulating digital environments or education on these as well as the development of appropriate public policies. Modern times represent only the beginning in the development of digital environments, which is unstoppable in the direction of their pervasiveness. We should therefore think about necessary interventions in their development and/or ways of their being used. The life of future generations within these environments depends on the foundations established today.


[24]  Tim O’Reilly, “What is Web 2.0: Design Patterns and Business Models for the Next Generation of Software”, International Journal of Digital Economics 65/2007, p. 17.

[25]  Jan Van Dijk, The Network Society, The SAGE Publications, Thousand Oaks 2012, p. 20.

[26]  Henry Jenkins, Convergence culture: Where old and new media collide, New York University Press, New York 2008, p. 16.

[27]  J. Van Dijk, The Network Society, p. 20.

[28]  Manuel Castells, The Rise of the Network Society, Wiley-Blackwell, New Jersey 2011.

[29]  Scott Lash, “Power after Hegemony: Cultural studies in Mutation”, Theory culture & society 24 (3/2007), p. 70.

[30]  Eurostat, “Digital economy and society statistics – households and individuals”,, accessed 10 October 2018.

[31]  Ibid.

[32]  Ibid.

[33]  Pewglobal, “Social Media Use Continues to Rise in Developing Countries but Plateaus Across Developed Ones”,, accessed 10 October 2018.

[34]  Ibid.

[35]  Digital Economy and Society Index Report 2018, “Use of Internet Services”, file:///C:/Users/user/Downloads/3DESIReportUseofInternetServicespdf%20(2).pdf, accessed 20 October 2018.

[36]  Croatian Bureau of Statistics, “Usage of information and communication technologies (ICT) in households and by individuals, 2017”,, accessed 20 October 2018.

[37]  Ibid.

[38]  Digital Economy and Society Index Report 2018, “Use of Internet Services”, file:///C:/Users/user/Downloads/3DESIReportUseofInternetServicespdf%20(2).pdf, accessed 20 October 2018.

[39]  Massimo Ragnedda, “Reducing and preventing digital discrimination: Digital inclusion strategies in Europe”, in Massimo Ragnedda, Bruce Mutsaviro (ed.), Digital inclusion: An international comparative analysis. Lexington books, Langham, Boulder, New York, London 2018, p. 6.

[40]  The Croatian Bureau of Statistics, “Usage of information and communication technologies (ICT) in households and by individuals, 2017”,, accessed 15 September 2018.

[41]  Eurostat, “Individuals-internet activities” accessed 15 September 2018.

[42]  Pewglobal, “Social Media Use Continues to Rise in Developing Countries but Plateaus Across Developed Ones”,, accessed 20 October 2018.

[43]  Ibid.

[44]  Sherry Turkle, Alone Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other, Basic Books, New York 2011, p. 229.

[45]  Ibid., p. 222.

[46]  Ibid., p. 229.

[47]  Statista, “Number of monthly active Instagram users from January 2013 to June 2018”,, accessed 10 September 2018.

[48]  Pewinternet, “Social media use in 2018”,, accessed 10 September 2018.

[49]  Benjamin Walter, “The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction”,, accessed 20 September 2018.

[50]  Marshall McLuhan, Understanding media: The extensions of man, London and New York, McGraw-Hill 1964, p. 10.

[51]  Neil Postman, Technopoly: The Surrender of Culture to Technology, Vintage Books, New York 1993, p. 7.

[52]  Robert Kraut i Malcom Brynin.„Social Studies of Domestic Information and Communication Technologies“ in Robert Kraut, Malcom Brynin and Sara Kielser, ed., Computers, phone and the internet: Domesticating information technology, Oxford University Press, Oxford 2006, p. 8.

[53]  Eurostat, “Enterprises using social networks in 2017 and in 2013”,,_2017_and_2013_(%25_of_enterprises).png, accessed 20 October 2018.

[54]  Ibid.

[55]  Eurostat, “Social media – statistics on the use by enterprises”,, accessed 20 October 2018.

[56]  Susan Greenfield, Mind Change: How digital technologies are leaving their mark on our brains, Random House, New York 2015, p. 22.

[57]  Ziming Liu, “Reading behavior in the digital environment: Changes in reading behavior over the past ten years“, Journal of Documentation 61 (6/2005), p. 705.

[58]  Geof Kauffman i Mary Flanagan, “High-Low Split: Divergent Cognitive Construal Levels Triggered by Digital and Non-digital Platforms”, ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems 2016, accessed 5 September 2018.

[59]  Reem Alzahabi i Mark W. Becker, “The association between media multitasking, task-switching, and dual-task performance”, Journal of Experimental Psychology Human Perception & Performance 39(5), str. 1485-1495.

[60]  Patricia Greenfield, “Technology and informal education: what is taught and what is learned”, Science 323 (5910/2009), pp. 69-71.

[61]  Royal Institute of Mental Health, “Status of Mind: social media and young people’s mental health and wellbeing”,, accessed 13 September 2018, p. 18.

[62]  Ibid., p. 23.

[63]  Ibid., p. 24.

[64]  Iva Paska, Nove oblike razmerij in njihove posledice: prijateljstvo med mladimi v pozni moderni. Fakulteta za družbene vede Ljubljana 2014, p. 205.

[65]  Ibid., p. 205.

[66]  Ibid., pp. 211-212.

[67]  Elisa Serafinelli, “Digital Life on Instagram: New Social Communication of Photography”, Emerald Publishing Limited, Bingley 2017, p. 83.

[68]  Ibid., p. 83.

[69]  Ibid, p. 52.

[70]  E. Serafinelli,” Analysis of Photo Sharing and Visual Social Relationships. Instagram as Case Study.”, p. 8.

[71]  Ibid, p. 10.

[72]  Ibid., p. 22.

[73]  Ibid., p. 14.

[74]  Ibid., p. 30.

[75]  Royal Institute of Mental Health, “Status of Mind: social media and young people’s mental health and wellbeing”, accessed 13 September 2018., p. 23.

[76]  Khadija Coxon, “Attention, Emotion and Desire in the Age of Social Media”, in C.G. Prado (ed.), Social media and your brain: Web-based communication is changing how we think and express ourselves. Prado (ed.), Praeger, Santa Barbara, Denver, 2016, p. 41.

[77]  Alexander Van Deursen and Jan Van Dijk, Digital skills: Unlocking the Information Society, New York, Palgrave Macmillan 2014, p. 34.

[78]  Ibid., p. 34/35.

[79]  Benjamin Walter, “The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction”, accessed 20 September 2018.

[80]  Ibid.

[81]  Erving, Goffman, The presentation of self in everyday life, Penguin books, London, New York 1990, pp. 13-18

[82]  Alain Badiou, Metaphysics of Real Happiness, Kulturtreger, Zagreb 2016, pp. 35-36.



Alain Badiou, Metaphysics of Real Happiness, Kulturtreger, Zagreb 2016.

Alexander Van Deursen and Jan Van Dijk, Digital skills: Unlocking the Information Society, New York, Palgrave Macmillan 2014.

Digital Economy and Society Index Rerport 2018, “Use of Internet Services”, file:///C:/Users/user/Downloads/3DESIReportUseofInternetServicespdf%20(2).pdf, accessed 20 October 2018.

The Croatian Bureau of Statistics, “Usage of information and communication technologies (ICT) in households and by individuals, 2017”,, accessed 19 October 2018.

Elisa Serafinelli, “Analysis of Photo Sharing and Visual Social Relationships. Instagram as Case Study”, Photographies 10 (1).

Elisa Serafinelli, Digital Life on Instagram: New Social Communication of Photography, Emerald Publishing Limited, Bingley 2017.

Erving Goffman, The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life, Penguin books, London, New York 1990.

Eurostat, “Digital economy and society statistics – households and individuals”,, accessed 10 October 2018.

Eurostat, “Enterprises using social networks in 2017 and in 2013”,,_2017_and_2013_(%25_of_enterprises).png, accessed 20 October 2018.

Eurostat, “Individuals-internet activities”, accessed 15 September 2018.

Eurostat, “Social media – statistics on the use by enterprises”,, accessed 10 October 2018.

Geof Kauffman and Mary Flanagan, “High-Low Split: Divergent Cognitive Construal Levels Triggered by Digital and Non-digital Platforms”, ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems 2016, accessed 5 September 2018.

Henry Jenkins, Convergence culture: Where old and new media collide, New York University Press, New York, London 2008.

Iva Paska, Nove oblike razmerij in njihove posledice: prijateljstvo med mladimi v pozni moderni, Fakulteta za družbene vede, Ljubljana 2014.

Jan Van Dijk, The Deepening Divide: Inequality in the Information Society, SAGE Publications, Thousand Oaks 2005.

Jan Van Dijk, The Network Society, SAGE Publications, Thousand Oaks 2012.

Jose Van Dijck, The Culture of Connectivity: A Critical History of Social Media, Oxford University Press, Oxford 2013.

Khadija Coxon, “Attention, Emotion and Desire in the Age of Social Media”, in C.G. Prado (ed.), Social media and your brain: Web-based communication is changing how we think and express ourselves, Praeger, Santa Barbara, Denver 2016, pp. 37-56.

Manuel Castells, The Rise of the Network Society, Wiley-Blackwell, New Jersey 2011.

Neil Postman, Technopoly: The Surrender of Culture to Technology, Vintage Books, Toronto 1963.

Massimo Ragneda, “Reducing and preventing digital discrimination: Digital inclusion strategies

in Europe”, in Massimo Ragneda, Bruce Mutsaviro (ed.), Digital inclusion: An international comparative analysis. Lexington books, Langham, Boulder, New York, London 2018.

Marshall McLuhan, Understanding media: The extensions of man, McGraw- Hill, New York 1964.

Patricia Greenfield, “Technology and informal education: what is taught and what is learned”, Science 323 (5910/2009), pp. 69-71.

Pewinternet, “Social media use in 2018”,, accessed 10 September 2018.

Pewglobal, “Social Media Use Continues to Rise in Developing Countries but Plateaus Across Developed Ones”,, accessed 10 October 2018.

Reem Alzahabi and Mark W. Becker, “The association between media multitasking, task-switching, and dual-task performance”, Journal of Experimental Psychology Human Perception & Performance 39(5), pp. 1485-1495.

Robert Kraut and Malcom Brynin, “Social Studies of Domestic Information and Communication Technologies” in Robert Kraut, Malcom Brynin and Sara Kielser, ed., Computers, phone and the internet: Domesticating information technology, Oxford University Press, Oxford 2006.

Royal Institute of Mental Health, “Status of Mind: social media and young people’s mental health and wellbeing”, , accessed 13 September 2018.

Scott Lash, “Power after Hegemony: Cultural studies in Mutation”, Theory culture & society 24 (3/2007), pp. 55-78

Sherry Turkle, Alone together – why do we expect more from technology and less from each other, Basic Books, New York 2011.

Statista, “Number of monthly active Instagram users from January 2013 to June 2018”,, accessed 10 September 2018.

Susan Greenfield, Mind Change: How digital technologies are leaving their mark on our brains, Random House, New York 2015.

Tim O’Reilly, “What is Web 2.0: Design Patterns and Business Models for the Next Generation of Software”, International Journal of Digital Economics 65/2007, p. 17-37. Walter Benjamin, “The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanicam Reproduction”,, accessed 20 September 2018.

Ziming Liu, “Reading behavior in the digital environment: Changes in reading behavior over the past ten years“, Journal of Documentation 61 (6), pp. 700- 712.


Digitalna medijska okruženja i njihove implikacije: Instagram




Na početku 21. stoljeća nalazimo se na pragu nove razine razvoja digitalnih medija. Digitalna medijska okruženja izlaze iz fiksnih izoliranih društvenih djelokrugova i sve se više integriraju u svakodnevnicu pojedinca do razine na kojoj postaje teško razlučiti granicu između spojenosti na internet i stvarnog svijeta. Tome doprinose i društvene mreže kao podvrsta digitalnih okruženja u koju smo sve više uronjeni na globalnoj razini. U prvom planu ovog rada je Instagram kao mreža čije je funkcioniranje organizirano oko vizualnog. Namjera je rada promisliti implikacije digitalnih okruženja na primjeru Instagrama u okvirima teorijskog konceptualnog okvira digitalnih medijskih okruženja.


Key words: digitalni mediji, digitalna medijska okruženja, društvene mreže, internet, Instagram.




 8(15)#19 2019

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Pregledni članak
Review article
Primljeno: 08.01.2019.



Veljko Žvan

Arhitektonski fakultet Sveučilišta u Zagrebu, Studij dizajna
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Electronic Media and Critical Thinking

Puni tekst: pdf (405 KB), English, Str. 2365 - 2374





The development of civilization is in a specific way indivisible from the development of media as a means of communication through technology. This development has always depended on previous achievements as well as on societal relations and newly created human needs. After print, which helped create parliamentary democracy, civil society and the free individual, electronic media have completely occupied the realm of communication in developed societies. To understand its nature, we have to understand the context in which this phenomenon has occurred and developed. This is highly developed liberal capitalism, which, by the power of its “invisible hand”, regulates relations between human beings, turning them into addicts, primarily dependent on visual media, but also on all other constant, immediately available stimuli.


Key words: printed media, electronic media, critical thinking, images, liberal capitalism, technology, market.



The importance of the technology-based media had been noted a long time ago in human history. Already at the time of the Roman Empire, thanks to script and, primarily, papyrus, societal relations were regulated by written laws, even in the outermost provinces. A wide range of laws, comprising the legal system, was created in place of a rudimentary, custom-based oral tradition. The terms and categories derived from that system still constitute the basis of legally regulated relations both in Europe and in societies based on the European spirit, notably those in North America.

However, the use of the media reached its full revolutionary potential at the time of the Reformation and the invention of the Gutenberg printing press. Asa Briggs and Peter Burke correctly note that the Gutenberg printing press not only enabled Martin Luther to realise his ideas, but that it also saved his life.[83] Luther’s ideas came to life in pamphlets, brochures and other printed matter so that his execution in the manner of that of Jan Hus would have been pointless, and probably counterproductive. The Reformation movement thus flourished, giving rise to Protestantism and the development of the German language, into which Luther translated the Bible. This development set a precondition for the creation of the German nation and the evolution of education, debates and literacy. Moreover, the phenomenon today referred to as public opinion started to emerge due to local referendums by which the people opted for either the Protestant or the Catholic Church.

Changes at the time of the Reformation, no matter how big or revolutionary they were (especially in the context of the period), nevertheless took place in the spiritual realm of religion, or dogma. In fact, literacy and education made possible the reading and understanding of religious texts, notably the Bible. The knowledge held by priests was not relevant anymore, the priest (even the Pope) no longer acted as an intermediary in the communication with God. Relevant arguments could be found in the Bible, so the Catholic Church no longer interfered by means of discussion, polemics or pamphlets, the favourite media form of the Protestants, but used images instead. Image versus text, emotions versus arguments. A brilliant defence against the strong arguments of the adversary. We know that educated Catholic priests read Aristotle and understood the relations between the values of ethos, logos and, in particular, pathos in polemics.[84]

Epochal changes that motivated man to abandon dogma and start relying on reason and science took place later, during the time of the Enlightenment. The main medium of the French Encyclopedists was print. However, at that point print did not annul the old dogma, compromised by secular thinking, in order to establish a new one. In fact, the philosophers of the Enlightenment annulled dogma itself and its source, religion. Encyclopaedias, which started to be printed in that period, were the first books whose content was based exclusively on scientific knowledge. For the first time in history, man, relying on reason, relies on himself and, according to Kant, grows out of his self-imposed immaturity. The Copernican Revolution would have been impossible without print.[85] Man made his first independent step during the Enlightenment. But that first step, invisibly linked to the distant past, began dismantling the old structures of religion, dogma, customs and tradition. The Age of Reason, still supported by common sense, started to emerge with the help of the media, creating conditions for the industrial revolution and the establishment of civic national states. Daily newspapers with high circulation were printed in Europe and North America already at the end of the 18th century. At the time of gaining independence, the United States of America had around two and a half million inhabitants, and the brochure Common Sense by Thomas Paine was sold in more than one hundred thousand copies!

Everything that was taking place during the Reformation as a part of the religious conflict now took the form of a conflict of man with his own past. However, at the time public opinion was not created through the conflict of two interpretations of religion, but through the conflict between the unchangeable past and a promising future. Isaac Newton changed the perception of nature – a stone that is thrown does not fall on the ground because it has to go back to its destined place, but due to gravitation. The discovery of the laws of nature made it possible for man to use them for his own benefit. Galvani’s bizarre accusations with which he aimed to discredit Volta, relying on religion and the divine origin of the world (and slightly threatening him), constitute one of the last scientific polemics that comprised the subject of religion (even though religion was irrelevant to the polemic itself).

The industrial and scientific revolutions took place at the same time as the creation of parliamentary democracy. Without a technologically perfected medium, print, none of these phenomena would have been possible. This is referenced by Francis Balle, who considers the merchant class and the media to be the main forces which deprived the then privileged class of their power and privileges, primarily in the area of knowledge.[86] The media disseminated information to everyone and enabled discussions, polemics and argumentation. They created a new image of the world, based on knowledge, and made it easily available. In short, it was the media that created public opinion. Thanks to the media, we can define the common good and we can choose the best among us to defend it. The conditions were created for parliamentary democracy. The fate of liberal democracy is closely connected to the fate of the media.

This is where the praise of the media ends, but a critical discussion on the subject continues. Balle thinks that in the second phase the media betrayed the ideals for which they had fought. He wonders whether the media succumbed to the market and started to destroy the very thing they had built – the democratic order based on the respect of values, public opinion and minorities. According to Balle, too much information kills information.[87] A situation in which all ideas are equal and readily available in the media creates a vast abundance of information where a banal, almost meaningless piece of information consumes a relevant one. Due to the desire to please the public, which is the main characteristic of the contemporary media, the banal piece of information is highlighted at the expense of the relevant one. Balle’s final thesis evidently reflects our own age, the age that we live in: the age of the electronic media.

This short historical introduction, which is just an outline of the development of the media in the Western civilisation, was necessary to place the media in general and the electronic media in particular in the context of human society. It is important to note that the media, as an invention, a technology, developed when there was a need for them and formed in a way that could satisfy that need. For instance, the famous disc from Crete, which is about 4 000 years old, contains characters of a script that never came to life because at that time there was no need to permanently record ideas and information.[88] The electronic media reached their full potential in the very places where they were created, in the developed countries of the Western civilisation, where they also became the first real media of mass communication.

The electronic media, as the mass media, if we focus on their meaning in our everyday life, represent the abandonment of what Marshall McLuhan calls a typographic culture,[89] a culture of text. The culture of text is based on reading and thinking, the activities that require memorising what is read and moving on towards the new, a new sentence, a new thought, memorising it and moving on again. In the typographic culture, critical thinking is not necessary, but the typographic culture is its precondition. Instead of by the text, ideas or rational content, the electronic media is dominated by images. Visual communication is back, for the first time since the Catholic Counter-Reformation, but this time it is a dominant, all-encompassing form of communication, easily accessible to all.

During the Counter-Reformation, but also as a part of tradition, especially in art, the image was a representation of reality, whether it represented nature, such as a landscape, for example, a portrait, or Jesus on the Cross. Every time it depicts a reality that we experience directly or create in our mind, believing it exists. It contains strong emotional values, which are the stronger the more we are familiar with the culture to which the image belongs. When we understand the context in which the image appears, we can understand the image itself, such as the Last Supper. If we are not familiar with the culture we will not be able to experience the image, or it will leave us indifferent. But another person familiar with the context of the image will be strongly emotionally affected. When we observe an image we project on it what we already know, and we understand it and experience it depending on the extent of our (previously acquired) knowledge. In other words, an image cannot tell us what we do not already know, as Sartre already established.

And what can be said about the image in the context of the electronic media? This is an important question because, as previously mentioned, the electronic media made reflexion, text and the typographic culture succumb to the image. Like in the previous periods of human history, in order to be able to understand the value of the image today one has to understand the contemporary context in which it appears, and not only the context of the media.

This newly created social context started developing in the sixties, the age of radio, television, daily press and various magazines. In the second half of the twentieth century McLuhan writes about the global embrace (of the media, of course), Guy Debord about the society of the spectacle and Baudrillard about simulacra. Most philosophers are critical towards the future, recognising that the media are crucial for the understanding of the new culture. However, they do not offer a deeper understanding of the media culture and often merely describe the media and their influence (often detrimental) on the fundamental human values. However, some developments in the area of economy can shed more light on the present.

The first phenomenon is the expansion of capital into areas in which it did not function well before, the areas of culture, politics and criticism (for example, the aforementioned Francis Balle points out parallel, separate movements towards the free market on the one hand and liberal democracy on the other). Capital was certainly always present in those areas, but never fully. In the area of politics capital was a prompter, not the main actor, in the area of culture it created its own space, the space of mass culture, and it feared criticism and put up a rather weak defence against it. The poem Howl by Allen Ginsberg ended up in court, John Lennon for years resisted covert actions of the American secret service and the fear of communism resulted in cultural purges. In the West, the sixties were the years of conflict addressed by the police; subcultural movements were an unexpected novelty (because they were not based on programmes but on feelings) that nobody could recognize or understand. The emergence of terrorism in Europe in the seventies caused confusion. A large percentage of German citizens supported terrorists' views and many even offered them a refuge from the police. The public opinion was divided, but so were the media, in line with the real division in the society.

Just a quick glance at our time helps us see the difference. Capital is no longer a prompter, it has become the main actor, a billionaire with no experience in politics has become the president. The criticism of the inhumane society based on profit and capital is an ever-present subject in movies, series and books that become bestsellers and generate huge profit for publishers. The interpretations of the social phenomena barely differ from each other, the things that should be judged are judged unanimously along with an overblown political correctness, which regulates how and what we should think. If we cannot change the world in reality, we can change it in people’s minds – it is the former political left that took over that pitiful and degrading role. The fundamental achievements of our civilisation, the legal system, the freedom of speech, the control and creation of state institutions, the participation in the main affairs of general interest, the definition of the general interest etc., all of that, in a way that not even Adam Smith could have imagined, has been taken over by an “invisible hand” in order to facilitate our everyday life and allow us to enjoy the spectacle. The production and distribution of shoes and corn are indeed ancient and nowadays ineffective and irrelevant tasks of the self-regulating market.

The other phenomenon is even more interesting. It is called financial capital. It refers to money and securities stored in banks, insurance companies and similar institutions. Economists from previous periods were familiar with this form of capital too, only that they called it fictitious capital. Probably because it is fictitious.[90] In other words, capital is a process and it proves itself as capital only in movement, investment, production and sales of goods or services. Nothing has changed in that aspect so far. In his work Capital in the Twenty-First Century Thomas Piketty cites an example of a central bank that has lent fresh capital to failed banks.[91] The problem is, explains Piketty, that this is far from a solution. That money will remain fictitious until it is turned into capital by investing in (profitable) production, in other words, when it starts moving. Only then can the economy of a country improve, depending on the profitability of the investment and other factors. Banks are nothing but storages of fictitious capital which realises its potential value by investment and movement. However, today capital regards itself as goods. These cannibalistic phenomena are called derivatives and they involve betting, gambling with diverse value packages consisting of fictitious capital according to the principle of the Ponzi scheme.[92] Derivatives do generate short-term profit, but every child that has played the “chain of luck” game could probably say something about their long-term effects. Are these phenomena related to the media?

The overproduction of shoes, cars, cell phones and medicines, as well as electronics and media content, is a consequence of market saturation, which poses a serious threat to capital. This is why capital turns to areas where it was not present before and creates new needs in the most bizarre ways. There is no difference between the latest iPhone model and the one four generations ago, except for the placement of some button and the width of the black line framing the image. Older technologically advanced computers and cell phones cannot be updated with new software and so the users are forced to buy the same, but newer devices. From a rational point of view, production becomes meaningless and an end in itself. The Danes export cookies to America, the Americans export cookies to Denmark. Tankers filled with oil transport the precious cookies in both directions. An economist has once asked: “Why don't they exchange recipes?”. The speed of capital turnover used to be measured by the mathematical dimension of time, the faster the better. Nowadays the situation is reversed, time is measured by the speed of capital turnover. Time is what is measured by the interval between the current and the new iPhone, the current and the new application, the current and the new season of a TV show, a new model of Nike trainers, a new car model…

Market saturation and incredibly fast changes, occurring primarily due to scientific and technological advances in all kinds of consumer products, and in media products in particular, have twofold consequences – first, they provide constant and intense sensations that fulfil the everyday life of individuals, and second, they create such a complex image of the world that we are made to feel inadequate to participate in it except as passive observers and users. The mechanical age is a thing of the past. Even the simplest peasant could plant a potato, shoe a horse or pick a plum. In short, he governed his own life, even though he was not free, being tied to the land and limited by religious and traditional rules. It should be kept in mind that if we, as individuals, such as we are, went back to the past, our knowledge would be of no use to him. We are consumers of contemporary technological achievements, but not their creators. We do not know how to create electricity, how to make a cell phone, how to produce a petrol engine or an antibiotic. We only know how to use them.

The need for constant and ever-changing external stimuli has become dominant. The members of the Frankfurt School, the above-mentioned Guy Debord and Baudrillard, talked about that need, but only in relation to the old media, namely television, print and film. But it is the newest media, the smartphone created by Steve Jobs, that made McLuhan’s thesis about the extension of our senses a reality. The smartphone was the first to allow for numerous, constant, ever-present external stimuli. Images, videos, texts … all the time and in real time. How old fashioned it sounds when we think of television broadcast, even with hundreds of channels, of having to wait for the news, a movie or a TV show, having to sit in the room with a TV set, having to wait for twenty-four hours for the next cycle of news or seven days for the new episode of a TV show, having to go to the video store to find a new movie…and being able to only dream of uploading photos or videos showing our pets!

The fact that the image is a dominant form of media content is not a coincidence at all. Emotions and the speed of perception are crucial communication criteria. Cognition and reflection are demanding activities, carrying a lower emotional value, and they last too long. The image, unlike the thought, already contains an opinion, an idea and an intellectual value. Wittgenstein's concept of the picture[93], which is different from reality, facts and opinions, is reduced to one thing, to the image in the literal sense of the word. The image becomes a reality, a fact and an opinion. The logic of the image, which is the basis for establishing the truth, is also, according to Wittgenstein, a part of the image. However, today in the interaction of an individual with an image no questioning, thinking or reasoning takes place. The image has become a natural, self-explanatory environment that we react to by accepting it or rejecting it. Just as an animal expects to live in a natural environment and chooses what suits its needs, so does the man of the new media choose what he wants and discards what does not suit him. He does not question the origin of the technological environment and its meaning because he is satisfied with what that environment can offer him and feels completely fulfilled by it. The image of my media is the image of my world, the image of me. Never before has a medium been able to produce a one-dimensional and easily reachable, but exciting “truth” in such a fast, versatile and efficient way.

At the age of television, in the sixties, faced with the evident emergence of the electronic media, Friedrich Dürrenmatt wrote his famous play “The Physicists”. The domain of thinking is still extant, the themes are responsibility and science, man is in a new, unknown, technological space, which causes anxiety and insecurity. The possibilities are open because self-reflection still exists, the awareness of man as a subject, although lost, in the world he has built. The curtain that closes at the end of the play closed on an epoch in which the power of thought was considered an important human strength. Fictional heroes created by, for example, Michel Houellebecq, Jonathan Franzen, Elisabeth Strout and Karl Ove Knausgård, live in anxiety as in a self-evident space. Anxiety is not thematised as just one of several possible spaces; it is not even considered a subject. Dürrenmatt’s questioning would today be anachronistic and it would sound grotesque.

Thinking in general, thinking as such, is a precondition for critical thinking. The latter differs from the former only by the fact that it understands the whole and places a social phenomenon, an art work, a political fact, etc. in a historical context in which it appears as a subject. The context of our civilisation is always a historical consequence of the activity of our ancestors. Régis Debray divides the domain of human communication into communication, specific to both people and animals, and transmission, communication through history, specific only to people.[94] Transmission is a condition of human progress and enables man to exist as a historical being. I would add that the understanding of transmission, not only as communication but as a meaningful movement, as human history, is a task of critical thinking.

Banking deregulation, the aggressive expansion of capital into the areas of politics, culture and decision-making on the common good, the emergence of the electronic media in their final form (additional technological innovations are less important because they are used to finalise what has mainly been completed), the creation of financial capital as an incessantly ticking time bomb with an invisible dial, these are all the phenomena that take place at the same time as the opening of doors to liberal capitalism, as conceived by Milton Friedman.[95] Friedman’s idea is not the most deplorable one in the history of mankind, but it is definitely the most deplorable idea that took over the world, with the exception of extreme situations when psychopaths seized power. Natural resources are wasted in the name of their protection, freedom equals arbitrariness, entrepreneurial freedom is a guarantee of freedom in general, the surplus of value does not exist because human labour is complex, the problem of market intermediation and alienation is not discussed at all… The beginning of thinking in the minds of Milton Friedman and his followers Margaret Thatcher[96] and Ronald Reagan marks the end of thinking in general. While approximately fifty years ago the invisible hand was only taking crumbs from the table of human liberty, it has now obviously grabbed the whole cake.


[83]  Asa Briggs, Peter Burke, A Social History of Media, Polity Press, Cambridge, UK 2005, p. 63.

[84]  The current relevance of Aristotle's Rhetoric is supported by the findings of the extensive studies of persuasive communications, known as the Yale Studies. For more information see: Michael Kunczik, Astrid Zipfel, Uvod u znanost o medijima i komunikologiju (Introduction to the Science of Publicism and Communications), Zaklada Friedrich Ebert, Zagreb, 2006, pp. 161-171.

[85]  For the importance of print as a medium at the time of the Enlightenment and as a basis for the forthcoming industrial revolution see: A. Briggs, P. Burke, A Social History of Media, p. 79 and onwards.

[86]  Francis Balle, Moć medija (The Power of Media), Clio, Belgrade, 1997., p. 11 and 12.

[87]  Ibid., p. 13, pp. 47-62.

[88]  For more information about inventions and the development and reception of the technology and the media, see the brilliant book by Jared Diamond, Guns, Germs and Steel, W. W. Norton & Comp. New York, London, 1999, pp. 239-264.

[89]  Marshall McLuhan, Razumijevanje medija (Understanding Media), Golden Marketing – Tehnička knjiga, Zagreb, 2008, the chapter Medium is the Message, pp. 13-24.

[90]  Karl Marx, Kapital III (Capital, Volume III), Zagreb, 1948, p. 357.

[91]  Thomas Piketty, Kapital u 21. stoljeću (Capital in the Twenty-First Century), Profil, Zagreb, 2014, p. 649. and onwards.

[92]  The amount of money that the lender or the winning gambler makes does multiply by lending and usury (and even by gambling) without the intermediation of production. However, no society, not even a capitalistic one, is functioning or can function on the basis of such a type of “production”.

[93]  Ludwig Wittgenstein, Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, Veselin Masleša – Svjetlost, Sarajevo, 1978 (especially pp. 35-39). Since nowadays the picture theory has been assimilated by many different theories, Wittgenstein is often cited with different degrees of understanding. What is interesting for us here is his (tentatively speaking) cognitive theory and the breakdown of reality – fact – image – opinion – truth, not for the purpose of discussing it or agreeing with it, but for the purpose of establishing to what extent the image, in the current dominant perception of the world, has been vulgarly reduced to a self-evident pleasure.

[94]  Regis Debray, Uvod u mediologiju (Introduction to Mediology), Clio, Belgrade, 2000, available in summary at:

[95]  Milton Friedman, Kapitalizam i sloboda (Capitalism and Freedom), Globus nakladni zavod, Školska knjiga, Zagreb, 1992.

[96]  The extent to which current liberalism bases its power on the strength of capital liberated from the yoke of criticism, rather than on its theoretical value, is shown by the fact that the main liberalistic opinions were criticized, with great success, a hundred and fifty years ago. For example, Margaret Thatcher is remembered by her statement (which forms the basis of liberal philosophy): ̎There is no such thing as society: there are individual men and women, and there are families“. Here is what Marx responded to Thatcher about one hundred and fifty years before she made that statement:"(It is) the same as if someone said: From the point of view of society there are neither slaves not citizens, they are all human beings. On the contrary, they are slaves and citizens outside the society. Being a slave and being a citizen are socially determined categories.", Karl Marx, Temelji slobode (The Foundations of Freedom), Naprijed, Zagreb, 1974, p. 89).



Asa Briggs, Peter Burke, A Social History of Media, Polity Press, Cambridge, UK 2005

Michael Kunczik, Astrid Zipfel, Uvod u znanost o medijima i komunikologiju (Introduction to the Science of Publicism and Communication), Zaklada Friedrich Ebert, Zagreb, 2006

Francis Balle, Moć medija (The Power of Media), Clio, Belgrade, 1997

Jared Diamond, Guns, Germs and Steel, W. W. Norton & Comp. New York, London, 1999

Marshall McLuhan, Razumijevanje medija (Understanding Media), Golden Marketing-Tehnička knjiga, Zagreb, 2008

Karl Marx, Kapital III (Capital, Volume III), Kultura, Zagreb, 1948

Thomas Piketty, Kapital u 21. stoljeću (Capital in the Twenty-First Century), Profil, Zagreb, 2014

Ludwig Wittgenstein, Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, Veselin Masleša – Svjetlost, Sarajevo, 1987

Régis Debray, Uvod u mediologiju (Introduction to Mediology), Clio, Belgrade, 2000

Milton Friedman, Kapitalizam i sloboda (Capitalism and Freedom), Globus nakladni zavod, Školska knjiga, Zagreb, 1992

Karl Marx, Temelji slobode (The Foundations of Freedom), Naprijed, Zagreb, 1974 p. 89


Elektronički mediji i kritičko mišljenje




Razvoj zapadne civilizacije na poseban način u sebi sadrži i razvoj medija kao tehnološki posredovane komunikacije. Razvoj je uvijek ovisio kako o prethodnim dostignućima tako i o društvenim odnosima i novostvorenim ljudskim potrebama. Nakon tiska koji je pomogao stvoriti parlamentarnu demokraciju, građansko društvo i slobodnog pojedinca, elektronički je medij u cijelosti zauzeo komunikacijski prostor u razvijenim društvima. No, njegovu prirodu ne možemo razumjeti ako ne razumijemo kontekst u kojem se pojavljuje i razvija. To je visokorazvijeni liberalni kapitalizam koji „nevidljivom rukom“ regulira odnose među ljudima pretvarajući ih ovisnike o, prije svega slikovnim, ali i ostalim trajnim, trenutačno dostupnim podražajima.


Ključne riječi: tiskani medij, elektronički medij, kritičko mišljenje, slika, liberalni kapitalizam, tehnologija, tržište.




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Primljeno: 03.12.2018.



Fulvio Šuran

Sveučilište Jurja Dobrile U Puli
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Quo Vadis Digitalis Homine?
Digital Philosophy and the Universe

Puni tekst: pdf (379 KB), English, Str. 2375 - 2384





To think about the metaphysics of our digital era – who are we? where do we come from? but, first of all, where are we going? – we have to notice that the majority of people, instead of interacting with the boring surroundings, is deeply focused on a neverending and nervous human-machine interaction, which has become a universal human trait. Unluckily, the discussion here will be about an anthropology of the homo digitalis, that is, about the possibilities/dangers of the undefined boundaries between the online and the offline life that unavoidably changes the same vision of the world, which finds in Descartes (ratio), and not in Bacon (experientia), its predecessor.


Key words: antropo-digital philosophy, Descartes, human nature, mind, computer, internet, digital body, eternal data, humanism.



According to digital philosophy, we are all (digitally) programmed.[97] Our life evolves according to the mathematical project of four nitrogenous bases [adenine (A), guanine (G), and the pyrimidine derivatives cytosine (C) and thymine (T)], which make up the genetic data contained in 23 chromosomal pairs constituting the DNA molecule.

It should be pointed out that the main difference between the analogue and digital worlds is in their representation of reality. The analogue world is a world of information with a sequence of continuous values, while the digital vision of reality uses “discrete”, i.e. separate and different values.

Figuratively speaking, it is the difference between the second indication in a (normal) clock and the passing of seconds in the computer clock. This means that the digital philosophical school claims that, as a DNA script, the whole reality can be defined by means of discrete and integral numbers, as is well presented in Edward Fredkin’s thought,[98] conceived as the “atomic theory carried to a logical extreme” (see “This means that, theoretically, any quantity can be represented exactly by an integer. Further, DP implies that nature harbors no infinities, infinitesimals, continuities, or locally determined random variables.” Thus, digital philosophy understands the universe as a huge computer, entirely based on and composed of numbers; where matter and energy are secondary and complex manifestations in which dynamic processes appear in the form of transitions from one numerical state to another. As for the atoms, same as in the case of DNA, this theory is interesting and understandable.

However, if digital philosophy thus configured is applied to physics, it can never function by claiming that time and space are composed of integers, because this is clearly contradictory. If all of this were true, the history of the world would evolve like a game of chess, where every move is “discrete” and produces a different state – in contrast, for example, to a soccer match, where the ball is in constant movement and each shift in its trajectory might produce a new world.

It should be noted that there are certain correlations between this challenging ontology and the M-Theory,[99] a version of string theory proposed by physicist Edward Witten. This is all interesting material for the science, philosophy, and art of the future.

This leads us to an interesting premise: Computo ergo sum / I compute, therefore I am; which leads us to think about the metaphysics of our digital era – who are we? Where do we come from? But above all: where are we going? It is sufficient to note that most of our contemporaries, especially young people, tend to be mentally-digitally connected to their touchscreens instead of engaging in a living, direct, subjective, physical interaction with their grey, boring, and alienating environment. Even though a recent phenomenon, this continuous and nervous interaction between man and machine has become a universal feature of humanity.

It is, namely, about the anthropology of homo digitalis. The new type of man. If one starts from the fact that the fundamental nature of reality and existence, science and knowledge, mind and reason is constantly changing and transforming, one sees that the boundaries between our online and offline lives are becoming increasingly blurred, which means that our perception and vision of the world, i.e. our philosophy of life, is relentlessly changing as well.

In the everyday life of our new millennium, we are involved in continuous computations by means of microprocessors: posts on Facebook, Amazon recommendations, Google searches, Minecraft games, and so on. Thus we can rightly paraphrase the famous Cartesian syllogism “Cogito, ergo sum” as “Computo, ergo sum”. More precisely: I twit, so I exist. After all, it is also evidence that the communication technologies continually redefine the multi-secularized speculations about the fundamental nature of human existence.[100] The consequence is that an increasing number of data available to man ruthlessly perverts and inverts all previous knowledge. Historical studies, for example, are constantly transformed due to an increasing number of data, not to mention geography, which is increasingly under a direct influence of communication. It becomes more and more evident that while knowledge distribution and accumulation enhance and expand knowledge, globalization reduces the number of spoken languages. In this constant and unstoppable transformation of the reality, mathematical logic and mathematics are more than ever an integral part of the space-time fabric that surrounds and encompasses us. The question is to what extent, if there is any measure, will it extend to the future? And what will be the role of man, as we perceive him today, in all this?

In order to realize somehow the seriousness of the problem – in terms of the reality we are facing – we should know that, according to the Cisco Systems estimates,[101] there were as many hardware devices in 2008 connected to the Internet as there are people on our planet. And today there are more than 25 billion, with around 50 billion expected by the end of this decade, in 2020. That means: seven times more than the world’s population. Even though, unfortunately, only a third of it currently has access to the Internet.

In the so-called “Internet of Things,” which is in the process of being implemented – today millions of thermostats, dozens of millions of light bulbs, hundreds of millions of cameras are integrated in the Internet system – more and more electronic devices will communicate with the reality: recognizing it (by way of sensors), acting upon it (by way of wireless communication), and possibly modifying it (by way of actuators). In fact, we live in the time of infosphere sublimation.

But the final blow to the traditional understanding of the world comes from two new hybrid technologies. The aim of the first is to enhance the perception of the reality by combining biological sensory inputs, such as hearing and vision, with digital information.[102]

The second is artificial intelligence, which uses different types of hardware and software increasingly successfully to replicate every trait attributed to human intelligence, from learning onwards. Although for now, but only for now, the most obvious and for many insurmountable difference between the so-called “biological intelligence” and the so-called “artificial intelligence” is consciousness.

Interestingly, even today, although everyone knows that the artefacts of modern technology lack consciousness, many well-known scientists such as Stephen Hawkins, entrepreneurs such as Elon Musk, and philanthropists such as Bill Gates believe that further development of artificial intelligence poses a threat to humanity, because the machines[103] might become powerful and intelligent enough to reach a state in which they will develop some kind of independent consciousness and decide to subject humans or that humans were unnecessary. This fear is manifest regardless of the fact that most scientists, including experts in artificial intelligence, exclude this possibility, at least for now and in the near future. But “for now” does not mean “never”. The doubt remains and it will surely become the central philosophical dilemma of the third millennium. And it will address questions such as: what is real life, if it does not differ from the artificial one? Is there some cyber-ethics independent of software? Is there some sort of digital free will?

The crisis is not new. Back in 1979, modern philosophy displayed a growing sense of insecurity in Richard Rorty’s book Philosophy and the Mirror of Nature. This made the philosophy of science move away from its traditional rhetoric, based on the fundamental ability of predicting events, to consciously accept uncertainty.[104]

As we are rapidly entering the zone of information (the infosphere), marked by the uncertain boundary between the analogue and digital worlds, contemporary pragmatic philosophy must further adjust its course by adopting an approach to ethics capable of incorporating both the natural world and the artificial one of man-built devices, characterized by growing intelligence.

Although in front of (our own) touchscreen we feel secure concerning our existence, in the form of computo ergo sum, this does not mean that many of the ancient dilemmas have not remained (fatally) open. Needless to say, in the meantime we have also added some completely new queries and uncertainties. From “online psychology” to the “digital divide”. From attacks on privacy to attacks on the freedom of expression in the WikiLeaks style. From robotic tutors to cyberwars.

It is true that we have answered many questions with the help of technology. However, this has opened (several) additional Pandora’s boxes of questions in return, more than ever before.


We are our minds

(“Except our own thoughts, there is nothing absolutely in our power.” R. Descartes)

It is interesting to note, within this worldview, that these topics suggest that the vision of human nature in digital culture has essentially all the traits of the traditional Cartesian perspective, although it was initially rejected by the philosophers and criticized by the anthropologists. I am referring to the vision that “we are our minds.” No more, no less!

Namely, in digital culture, the fundamental feature of man is the mind. This means that our body, our sex, race, age, ethnicity, and nationality are “absolutely” irrelevant when it comes to defining what we really are in cyberspace. Because our identity, in the form of qualities that we identify with, can easily be changed by simply changing several text lines.

Namely, in cyberspace one exists in a purely bodiless state (one might traditionally say: in an inhuman state). We are information, modelled words and ideas. In this sense, one of the advocates and defenders of “digital freedom”, artist John Perry Barlow,[105] has rightly argued that, in the quiet world of cyberspace, all conversations are digital rather than spoken. In order to join them, we do not need the body; and the space of action becomes a place consisting of words alone. Barlow describes cybernetic space as the new headquarters of the mind, in which there is no room for weary bodies.

A renowned women rights activist, Elizabeth Reid,[106] believes that in the dimension of computer-mediated conversation (CMC), the body becomes an entity of relative significance. Freed from the physical entity, which is perceived as a limitation, man fully enters the domain of symbols, unlimited by any physical means.

Likewise, Hans Moravec,[107] an artificial intelligence expert, believes that the future of humanity is digital. He imagines a future where it will be possible to free the mind from any aggravating and limiting biological substrate, because the mind will be transplanted layer by layer into the computer. Moravec suggests that personal identity could be preserved in this process, because the essence of a person, his or her self-identity, consists of the models of processes that can be preserved and saved. This body is obsolete because it will not be functional in the times we are heading towards. It has become superfluous to our existence and appears as the background glamour of human essence. It is viewed as a source of failure, disgust, and constraints, and must therefore be overcome in order to turn humans into pure minds.[108]

Many contemporary researchers who identify themselves with this worldview look at the body as a prison from which we must break free and turn into bodiless consciousness. Freed from these physical limitations, our minds can freely wander through the ethereal spheres of electronic space: humans can only reach perfection by shaking off the limitations of our DNA, which can be done by developing such nanotechnology that will “enter” the human body and mould it according to one’s personal intentions, giving us freedom to transcend the boundaries of our personal DNA.


Beyond social and physical differences

In the digital dimension thus envisioned, the highly praised slogan “vive la difference” loses its raison d’être. In this future world of cyberspace, where life is digital and we exist only as information, sex, type/race, and ethnicity are irrelevant categories that no longer have their “traditional” meaning. Information is free from any individual identity; it has no sex/gender or race/type and is not distributed according to an accent that would geographically determine a person.

Thus, in Croatia one would not be marked as Slavonian or Istrian. Internet communication reinforces the conviction that the mind is all that matters: ideas and words, not the person to whom they belong. The major factor of levelling and equality is based on the fact that online nobody can reliably determine the age, race, skin colour, hair colour, body shape, voice, or any other physical trait of another person. So it is only ideas that matter. In cyberspace, age, race, and gender are mere “noise” disturbing the flow of pure information. To really enter the cyberspace, they must be rejected: all individual specificities must be abandoned in search for a pure communion of minds. In this sense, the Internet technology allows us to ignore the differences and focus on ideas, which everyone can do.


From a fluid society to flexible and obedient individuals

The digital allows for the already intrinsic flexibility, pliability, and plasticity of human nature and the “self” to be brought to the extreme. In the trans-humanistic Estropica philosophy, we find ourselves in an age in which finally anything can be done. Modern technology has given us such powers that we are not only able to manipulate the external reality, the physical world, but we can also manipulate ourselves. We can become everything we want. In the culture of information, the human being becomes a plug-and-play of various possible entities; composed of different parts that can be updated by simply clicking the mouse or by inserting a new line of code. This may soon lead us to perform all our activities, to live and work in cybernetic space, where our ideas will no longer depend on a single and unchangeable body.

The body will therefore be fully flexible and variable depending on the situation, since some organs might work better in some situations, while others may be preferable in other conditions of possible lives. And all that according to our desire and will. This ability to radically and convincingly change one’s appearance-body is bound to produce a profound psychological effect on our personality, since we will question only what we want to be; and nothing else.[109] Eventually, it should be pointed out that Eric Gullichsen,[110] an expert in cyberspace, even imagines a future in which our demand for new identities will become an integral part of human life.


Networking the world in order to rule it

But that’s not all. Namely, through the network we will be able to rule the world. In this way, the web (network) will become our new home.

To man as a thinking being, digital culture gives the feeling of home, a kind of cosmos in which to experience and even control one’s own life. The computer offers a world of order and logic by building a world that is fully rational. Because, as a formal mechanism, it works according to the principles of logic, creating a world whose building blocks are the logical algorithms of the program that we feed into them. And which operate, at least that is what we believe, according to strictly defined rules, because they are micro-worlds that can be completely deciphered as programs.

So, instead of the chaotic and hard-to-understand world that we consider as real for now, the computer offers a (picture of the) world of order, which is more logical, rational, and transparent.

This means that instead of the real world, in which we often lose our direction and sense, the computer serves as a better and more optimistic replacement. In the form of a pre-programmed, intact, and orderly diagram line of our life course, as a new image of a well-ordered and computable nature. This means that in the near future flowcharts, programs, and microchips will be part of the new cosmology. For the homeless of this (still) real and fragile world, images of the web crossing the world, the Internet surrounding the planet, will comfort all human beings at the metaphysical level, assuring us that we also, each one of us, have the ability to rule the world and keep it in our hands.


Back to the 17th century

All these issues of digital philosophy reveal that the dominant image of human nature in the 21st century is very similar to that of the 17th century. Especially when it comes to the superiority of mind over body, the efforts to achieve the transcendental state of pure mind, liberated from the prison of the body; the disparagement of sex and gender, race and ethnicity as accidental and worthless qualities; and the desire for an untouched nature within a mathematically ordered universe.

This vision of reality is incredibly similar to that of the traditional Cartesian and Christian thought. The irony is in the fact that most philosophical movements during the last century tried to eradicate all traces of Cartesian thought, and yet it is at the heart of computer culture in a modern form of Cartesianism. However, the limitations of this vision of human nature are obvious.

It is certainly not true that the vision of human nature is entirely contained in computer culture, which suggests that our bodies, our sex, race, and countless other factors are irrelevant. In this theory, the body is perceived as a limitation, subject to disease and corruption. The central role is given to the rational nature, ignoring many other human traits, such as the significance of the biological nature of man: the fact that human beings belong to particular social and cultural environments, as aspects of human nature that do not belong to computer culture. This means that while thinking about the essence of philosophy, including the education of mankind, it is necessary to develop the awareness or conviction that the philosophers have the responsibility to focus their attention and their critical abilities on the issue of human nature in the modern world. And that means human nature in its totality. The modern man, as a thinking/feeling social being, must not allow this apparent void, a result of insufficient consideration of these issues, to enable technology to keep philosophically discrediting the entire human nature in favour of the digital one. Our modern politics is also responsible for this situation, since it entrusts our future to technology rather than the social system and turns man into a mere technician, seeing him as a means to realize technological potential rather than the goal in himself (in his human totality).

Therefore, today more than ever, the renewal of philosophical anthropology and the related anthropological issues is quite vital. These questions have intrigued the human mind since ancient times: “What am I as a human being?” and/or “What is my place in the universe?” Questions that are today, at the beginning of the new millennium, which is certainly digital, more urgent than ever. They also include Shakespeare’s to be or not to be, and Kierkegaard’s aut-aut. Is it for us to decide whether the dice has already been thrown and we are only a consequence of that?


[97]  The word “digital” comes from Latin digitus (finger), and is synonymous to “counting” (by fingers).

[98]  He is one of the founders of this approach, together with Konrad Zuse, Stephen Wolfram, Gregory Chaitin, Seth Lloyd, and others.

[100]  The Italian philosopher Luciano Floridi has argued in his book The Fourth Revolution (Oxford University Press (UK) 2014) that this is the fourth shift in thinking about human existence. According to him, our first discovery was that we were not standing immobile in the centre of the universe (the Copernicus revolution). Then we realized that we were not special or different from the rest of the animal world (the Darwinist revolution); and that we were not completely transparent to ourselves (the Freudian revolution). Now the technologies make us realize that we are not separate agents, but informational organisms that share with others a global environment basically comprised of information (the infosphere). Floridi calls it “the Turing revolution” after Alan Turing, the founder of computer sciences. Therefore, according to the Italian philosopher, our worldview is about to change radically in the near future. Namely, this fourth “revolution” creates the need for a new philosophy, the philosophy of information, because we are only at the beginning of the Turing revolution.

[102]  Google Glass is only the first and rather clumsy attempt in this direction.

[103]  Resembling some future Transformers or Terminators.

[104]  In some ways, this transition can be explained by the transition from a rigid Newtonian mechanics that dominated the gravitation of celestial bodies to quantum mechanics that – completely non-deterministic – governs the world of subatomic particles. “God does not play dice,” was a famous commentary by Albert Einstein regarding the unexpected and uncertain. Today we know that the greatest physicist in history was wrong. God does play dice: in the subatomic world, electrons in fact follow the principle of uncertainty pronounced by his colleague Werner Heisenberg. But there is not just physics. Seismologists, climatologists, and even biologists and pathologists must face such uncertainty, to the extent that the old idea of ​​knowledge as a faithful mirror of nature has itself been challenged.

[105]  John Perry Barlow (1947-2018) was an American poet, essayist, activist, and the former author of The Grateful Dead songs. He is also known as a defender of digital freedom and a co-founder and vice-president of the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF Board of Directors). From May 1998, he was a Fellow at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society at the Harvard University. The Time magazine has proclaimed him “one of the 10 superintelligent rock musicians.” His most famous work as an activist is A Cyberspace Independence Declaration, published in February 1996 in response to the US Telecommunications Act.

[106]  Elizabeth Anne Reid is an Australian expert in development, a distinguished feminist and academician. She has made a significant contribution to both national and international public service. She has founded, established, and cooperated with a number of pioneering and specialized UN institutions, governmental agencies, and non-governmental organizations.

[107]  Howard Rheingold is an American literary critic, sociologist, and essayist specialized in the cultural, social, and political implications of the new media. He has introduced the notion of virtual community, in which he sees an instrument for the affirmation of decentralized democracy, since the links of public life tend to disintegrate in networks. This has led him to suggest a global virtual community without warning about the dangers and losses it might bring.

[108]  The influence of Christian rejection of the sinful human nature in its corporeality is quite evident, even striking.

[109]  After Rheingold, Virtual Reality.

[110]  Eric Gullichsen, “Metodi cibernetici per raggiungere l’immortalità (vita artificiale ‘in silicio’),” in: Timothy Leary, Caos e Cibercultura (Milan: Libri Urra, 1995), 40.



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Online sources


Quo vadis digitalis homine?
Digitalna filozofija i svemir




Da bi razložno razmišljali o metafizici naše digitalne ere - tko smo mi? odakle dolazimo? ali prije svega: kamo idemo? – treba primijetiti da većina ljudi umjesto interakcije s dosadnom okolinom, udubljuje se u neprestanoj i nervoznoj interakciji čovjek-stroj, što je postala univerzalna osobina čovječanstva. Radi se naime o antropologiji ‘homo digitalisa’ o kojoj će se ovdje raspravljati, tj o mogućnostima / opasnostima sve neodređenijih granica između online i offline života što neumoljivo mijenja i samu viziju svijeta, koja u Descartesa (ratio) a ne u Bacona (experientia) ima svoj presedan. O tim mogućnostima / opasnostima bit će ovdje riječ.


Ključne riječi: antropo-digitalna filozofija, Descartes, ljudska priroda, um, računalo, internet, digitalno tijelo, viječni podaci, humanizam.




 8(15)#21 2019

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UDK 325.5:316.774(6)
Pregledni članak
Review article
Primljeno: 19.12.2018.



Glorija Mavrinac

Filozofski fakultet Sveučilišta u Zagrebu
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The Westernization and Colonization of the African Mind through the Media

Puni tekst: pdf (430 KB), English, Str. 2385 - 2400





The presentation deals with the issue of media imperialism and racism in the novel Americanah (2013) by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Nigerian novelist and writer. The paper starts from the position of electronic colonialism theory about danger of seductive media content. Violent media propaganda and transcription of western media content in Nigerian mass media affects the abandonment of African cultural patterns and forcibly changing behaviors of domicile population. Characters in the Adichie’s novel are great example of the mind colonization and westernization that is followed through the media. In the presentation we will show how media imperialism led to racial fetishism and losing pre-colonial values in african society.


Key words: media imperialism, electronic colonialism theory, racism, mind westernization, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.



1. Introduction

A new type of Western domination has been introduced in African countries after the end of colonization: the colonization of the mind. The theoretical part of this paper aims to show how this constitutes a neocolonial intention by the West, opening up the question on the ways this process is carried out. In addition to the institutionalized implementation of western cultural imperatives in the everyday lives of indigenous cultures, there also exists a westernization of media content i.e. media imperialism characterized by copying content from global media sources. The theoretical part of the text will focus on defining terms and showing the interdependence between the colonization of the mind and media imperialism, while the second part will examine electronic colonialism theory in the novel Americanah by the Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie in order to explain how media imperialism, i.e. the transfer of western cultural patterns onto the African context through the media, displaces cultural identities of domicile nations and leads to a westernization of the African mind. Given this novel deals with the problem of media violence against African immigrants in the Western world, we shall analyse how media discourses intensely marked by centralist western imperatives influence the self-perception of the African subject. The novel has a pronounced role in recording and presenting the obscure outcomes of the returnee's attempt to reintegrate in the African world. The paper will relate this process to media imperialism in Nigeria.


2. A theoretical approach to the term colonization of the mind

In order to analyze elements of colonization through the media as presented in the novel Americanah, the issue of the colonized mind needs to be approached from a theoretical point of view. This term does not have many detailed theoretical explanations and is often used with the assumption its meaning is clear. Although a unified definition of the term has not been established, we shall present some authors who deal with the phenomenon of domination over someone’s cultural space, and our aim is to be precise in delineating the semantic scope of the term. Using this term with the assumption its meaning is clear must be related to a high level of semantic transparency. This phenomenon follows European invasions of the African continent[111], and relates to the westernization of social and cultural patterns of a particular nation. The first colonization exploits the land and the human body, while the later colonization of the mind uses western mechanisms to influence people’s worldviews, their desires and ideas about themselves as individuals and as members of their communities.

Although he does not offer a precise definition of the colonized mind, in his books Black Skin, White Masks (1952) and The Wretched of the Earth(1961), Frantz Fanon uses a perfect knowledge of the human psyche to diagnose the issue of white men dominating over black men. In a diachronic review of how the Western episteme has dominated non-Western cultures, Fanon concludes:

When we consider the efforts made to carry out the cultural estrangement so characteristic of the colonial epoch, we realize that nothing has been left to chance and that the total result looked for by colonial domination was indeed to convince the natives that colonialism came to lighten their darkness. The effect consciously sought by colonialism was to drive into the natives' heads the idea that if the settlers were to leave, they would at once fall back into barbarism, degradation, and bestiality. On the unconscious plane, colonialism therefore did not seek to be considered by the native as a gentle, loving mother who protects her child from a hostile environment, but rather as a mother who unceasingly restrains her fundamentally perverse offspring from managing to commit suicide and from giving free rein to its evil instincts. The colonial mother protects her child from itself, from its ego, and from its physiology, its biology, and its own unhappiness which is its very essence (Fanon 1968: 124).

Fanon’s teachings imply that domination over land and body is not the final goal of colonial repression: it is the control of consciousness, i.e. as we have already said, the intention to see oneself in western frames of reference. A mind seduced in this way will not oppose the neocolonialism systematically destroying the economy of African countries and will be susceptible to colonial domination for decades after the end of colonialism. We shall explain different forms this submissiveness takes in analyzing one particular novel. We believe that the development of the prolonged colonialism, i.e. the colonization of the African mind, develops on two levels. The first one relates to the westernization of the education system in Africa, and the second to the westernization of media content. Before we show how these levels correspond and before we explain how culture is transformed through these influences, we need to offer a precise definition of the term.

The term itself is a sort of antonym to the term of decolonization of the mind, mentioned in the title of the book by the Kenyan author Ngũgĩ wa Thiong'o[112]. What we aim to determine as the colonization of the mind in this work, Thiong'o calls the domination of the mental universe of the colonised noting that economic and political control which the West sees as imperatives in the neocolonial system, cannot be effective without a mental domination which is achieved through controlling the tools of self-definition a certain culture uses in relation to other cultures (Thiong'o 1986: 16). By using the metaphor on the transition of psychological violence from the battlefield to the classroom (Ibid., p. 9) Thiong'o concludes that the infiltration of colonialism in the African school system is the cornerstone of a westernized collective mentality. The desired result of colonizing the school system and media is the production and establishment of a Western culture in a non-Western area which is particularly visible in the western types of accepted knowledge, as prescribed through curricula[113]. This results in a paradox of a non-Western man producing western beliefs in areas outside the West. Colonial schools in Africa base their teaching content around facts on Europe or North America, completely disregarding or construing African pre-colonial past. Fanon concludes this is the best indicator of the colonizer’s wish to impose its rule upon the present and the future of a dominated country (Fanon 1968: 24). The education system is therefore the cornerstone in construing the theory on, as postcolonial critics call it, pre-colonial barbarity, precisely because revitalizing it may entail the affirmation of indigenous resistance. Paulo Freire concludes that an oppressed society allows such mind domination due to an internalized image of freedom being a gift and not a product of indigenous fighting which is why one should be grateful for it (see Freire 2000: 47)

Fanon, Thiong'o and Freire imply that the domination over the mental space of the oppressed is determined by western culture entering institutions, in this case through dominating the African education system. According to these authors, the colonization of the mind is the final result of European domination manifested through the westernization of non-Western models of behaviour, that is, black people aiming to imitate white culture. We mentioned earlier how the development of such an outcome of prolonged colonization is determined by two levels, the first one being mediated through education and the second one through media content. In both cases this means the transfer of white models of cultural social dealings to the African context.

Since the intention of this text is to point to the obscurity of media spaces and explain the workings of discourse influenced by western imperatives in a non-Western context, one should keep in mind that the precondition of manipulating media content is a reading public educated in a way to accept these types of content. The westernization of African education and the adjustment of teaching content to western needs precedes and is an important precondition of African media westernization. Education is therefore the first step in the process of colonizing African worldviews since without its implementation the non-Western subject would provide resistance and would not agree to being a reading, listening and viewing public of colonized media. In this analogy these types of content in TV and written media are interpreted through mechanisms of strengthening western knowledge the African subject gained in education. In this sense the media do not represent a lesser tool in the prolonged process of colonization. Without the pervasiveness of the media, the individual would no longer be immersed in imposed western facts after getting a degree and there would still be a possibility of escaping the colonizing domination. By consuming western media content transposed into the African context, the colonized subject tries to adjust its self to western needs and thus remains a hostage to the colonizer.


3. Electronic colonialism as a powerful tool in the process of colonizing the mind

We already offered arguments on how the westernized forms of media content can be interpreted in third world countries as a powerful tool of neocolonial strivings for the transformation of the African society so now we shall offer a theoretical basis for these ideas.

In early 1980s, Thomas L. McPhail writes on media-transferred colonialism in his book Electronic Colonialism: The Future of International Broadcasting and Communication (1981), and in Global Communication: Theories, Stakeholders, and Trends (2002) he lists four[114] types of colonialism, naming the last one electronic colonialism. McPhail defines it as a social phenomenon beginning in the 1950s[115] involving the dependence of poor countries of the post-industrial society on the necessity of importing communication hardware and foreign production programmes, when a whole set of western habits, patterns of behaviour and socialization processes are also taken over. McPhail uses the term electronic colonialism theory[116] to define this approach to a repeated colonization through the media and its inevitable influence on transforming non-Western cultures (see McPhail 2006: 19).

MchPhail is not alone in this theory. Oliver Boyd-Barrett mentions the term of media imperialism seeing it as information addiction and owners of the media and media processes in poor countries being susceptible to the pressure exerted by western, rich empires. As two basic characteristics of media imperialism, the author lists the unidirectional character of the media influence and of this cultural invasion, as well as the imbalance in owning capital between the colonizing country and the one in which the colonized medium exists. According to Boyd-Barret, this is a direct consequence of the global media market monopolization (see Boyd-Barrett 1977: 122, 123).

Ejaz and Ahmad note that global sources[117] achieve more credibility compared to local media sources in less developed countries, and the reason for this is the economic profitability of media organizations in developing countries. The availability of global media information in all countries across the world leads to the copying of their content and reporters are led only by simplicity and profit, not caring how such an affirmation of western set of attitudes and values impacts domicile cultural identities. Ejaz and Ahmad see these actions as deepening the chasm of inequality between countries and the ones whose information is transferred become powerful rulers of the information era we live in (see Ejaz, Ahmad 2011: 135).

Since the novel we shall now analyze deals with consuming media content of non-Western Others in the U.S and on the other hand, with media imperialism and the transfer of western cultural patterns onto the African subcontext, it is necessary to correlate all these theoretical postulates. We shall now examine electronic colonialism theory in the novel Americanah and show how this affects the transformation of the self of African subjects in the western region as well as the increased collective unhappiness on the African continent.


4. Changes to African subjects through the media in the novel Americanah

The theory of the novel Americanah rests on all these theoretical grounds and offers a so-called low angle view. This is a postmodern novel of heterodiegetic narrative and structurally divided into eight parts examining and questioning the motive of a returnee. On one level the narrative world is determined by questioning the position of the non-Western Other in American society and on the other level, by positioning the returnee in Nigerian reality. The protagonist Ifemelu goes to college in the U.S. and returns to her country after thirteen years. The author plays with the narrative present dealing with Ifemelu’s last days abroad and a narrative past told in an almost flashback fashion. In these analepses the narrator gives a portrait of the transformation to Ifemelu’s self, that is, describes the path of her westernization. Akingbe and Adeniyi explain how this narrative examines the problem of racism and ethnocentrism in the U.S. and the UK[118] with the intention of starting a well-intentioned cultural dialogue in America's racialized society. The authors add that the realization of the transcultural objective, which the author aims to set as the dominant requirement of the novel, is continually prevented in multiple ways through factors such as racism, racial segregation and stereotypical portraying of non-westerners (see Akingbe, Adeniyi 2017: 43).

In analyzing the role of social networks in the novel, Fouad Mami notes that Adichie references the novel Americana[119] (1971) by Don DeLillo[120] in her title, a novel dealing with insoluble issues and negative consequences of media influence on the society. Mami concludes that playing with the lexeme of DeLillo's title has a two-fold role. Firstly, the choice of title refers to the colloquial Lagos expression for an American returnee and on the other hand, using it Adichie suggests the positioning of the media influence in the migration process. In Mami's view, her attitude towards the media is not as pessimistic as DeLillo's, which is seen in presenting possible positive relations between the media and immigrants (see Mami 2017: 171). The optimistic view on media narratives mentioned by Mami involves recording the possibility of using some media for raising awareness on the issue of racism with the outcome of representing the inner perspective of the black objectified collective. After repeatedly consuming types of media content which open up spaces for the emergence of racism and xenophobia, the protagonist launches her own media space of resistance – a blog on racial issues – but first we must explain the westernization process in African immigrants and their changed self-perception encouraged by the media and by being immersed in the white world.

In coming to North America, Ifemelu witnesses the final step in the process of changes to African subjects. First she meets her high-school friend Ginka and suspects she suffers from anorexia. Ginka’s fascination with the West and the ideal of the white female body leaves visible marks on her black body; she uses creams to whiten her skin, and painful concoctions to straighten her hair. She subjects herself to various methods with the goal of being equated with a white woman. The whitening process is not reserved only for the outer plane, there is also the wish to whiten her cultural level. By reading internet portals every day, Ginka fetishizes western culture and aims to incorporate it in her own universe of knowledge and behaviour by modifying and rooting out her African cultural identity: (...) Ginka came to America with a youthful adaptability and lightness, cultural determinants became a part of her so that now she went bowling and knew what was going on in the life of Tobey Maguire (...) (Adichie 2015: 129). By using the example of Ginka, the author crosses the western and non-Western ideal of female beauty, aiming to deconstruct the aesthetic imperative imposed by the media. So Ginka tells Ifemelu that she started losing weight soon after coming to the continent and came to the edge of anorexia because being thin is desirable here, which is not the case in Nigeria (Ibid., p. 128). She is a stereotypical consumer of women's magazines, falling victim to imposed aesthetical beauty imperatives, based of course, on western standards. Any type of nonconforming to these imperatives is framed and marked as a kind of otherness, which we will analyse further later on.

The next westernized subject Ifemelu comes into contact with is the character of Aunty Uju in whose home she plans to live. In the context of the novel she functions as a metonym of those emigrants who see the original culture as a burden and a signifier of their difference, the cause of their exclusion from dominant systems. Western culture therefore has advantage over the culture of their own people and, as we saw in the example of Ginka, they adjust their bodies to western standards. As a metonym for this set of attitudes, Aunty Uju tries to completely erase traces of the culture she left behind, filling up the new empty spaces with social imperatives of the West. Here we should also mention that Uju adjusts her own name to the English language: Aunty Uju's phone rang. “Yes, Uju speaking.” She pronounced it like yu-ju. “That's how you pronounce your name now?” asked Ifemelu afterwards. “That's how they pronounce it.” Ifemelu grit her teeth and struggled not to say: “Sure, but that is not your name.” (Adichie 2015: 115). The symbolism in exchanging the African name for an invented American variant is related to her idiolect which gives almost an ironic edge to this type of behaviour.

Uju forbids Ifemelu to talk with her son Dike in the Igbo language, hoping that using English will contribute to his better assimilation in the society. Her idiolect contains a high level of TV commercials and popular media content. In accordance with this, the identity of Aunty Uju is mediated through language, and her self is expressed in the way she composes sentences. This does not only involve using English instead of Igbo; the media articulated idiolect suggests a self immersed in the world of advertising and brands. In other words the language reflected as a set of media phrases becomes proof of American discourses and brands at work at the subconscious level. In this sense we interpret Uju as a parodied embodiment of popular American culture which is based on postulates of consumerism which in its turn aims to seduce the minds of potential future consumers. The characters store up these consumerist information not only by watching TV and reading internet ads, but through their own immersion in the everyday lives of cities swarming with signifiers[121] whose billboards they soak up both at the conscious and subconscious level thus becoming incorporated in the consumerist grind.

In following the development of these characters which starts with the change in self-perception and ends with a westernized cultural assimilation of the body and the self, we return to Fanon. He defines the black man as a social being in two dimensions which can be applied to most migrating African subjects in the novel; the first one involves its position among other black men, and the second one its position in white society. Fanon concludes that the white environment will significantly change behaviour as well through transforming its self-perception, as we have shown in previous examples (see Fanon 2008: 8). This is a sort of wish to mimic social interactions which the black man nurtures in order to become a part of the dominant white society.

In this sense the author uses the character of Uju's son Dike in an almost mythic and didactic mode. We already mentioned his mother forbids him to speak in the Igbo language and tries to eradicate all traces of African culture. Since he is unable to realize the desired cultural identity, Dike tries and fails to commit suicide. This suggests in a Fanon manner that suppressing the African self cannot result in a positive outcome and Dike's refusal to transform and Americanize his self can be seen through a common motive of postcolonial critique – a palimpsest. In her wish for positive integration in American society, his mother tries to separate him from the culture he wishes to be a part of, but his African self acts in the background and resists such cultural inversion. After his rehabilitation, Dike travels to Nigeria, succeeds in achieving an absolute consensus with society – impossible to achieve in the U.S. – and experiences a coherent identity which also could not be achieved if the subject is displaced from the culture he/she relates to. In the sense of genres, the way we follow the character of Dike makes this a Bildungsroman. In such an analysis Ifemelu would be the typical helper without whom the unification between subject and culture would be impossible.


5. Medialization of private spheres and the articulation of media imperialism in the novel

The novel deals with the power of electronic media in the sense of restructuring not only public, but also private spheres. Descriptions of most American households include spaces symbolizing this infiltration in the everyday life of the middle class. These are for example rooms for playing videogames and descriptions of interiors with the TV in an almost elevated position making it the centre of American family life. In his analysis of the changes in American society brought on by television and electronic media, Grgas writes: The effect of American TV programming exemplifies the frightening increase of stimuli flooding the human consciousness at the end of the twentieth century. In the field of cultural production transferred through the media, the subject is faced with a “semiotic saturation of signs” (Grgas 2000: 96).

Since television imagery changes the consciousness of the subject, interpersonal relationships are also influenced by these changes. Grgas quotes James B. T. Witchell in listing data confirming the idea of American culture medialization: Up to fifty million of people watch this 'device' every night. The experience of watching has become the social and intellectual glue holding us together, our basic community (ibid 95). The novel Americanah repeatedly deals with the consequences of American TV programming mentioned by Grgas, in showing how relationships within a community are modified according to requirements of the new culture. One example of restructuring private spheres and adjusting social relations to electronic media becomes obvious when Uju brings her partner[122] to meet Dike and Ifemelu. The novel mocks the displaced forms of such social situations and as soon as he arrives, a group of people that have just met start watching TV. Before resigning themselves to TV images the group almost does not have anything to talk about. It is the TV content that offers the protagonists with topics for debates and conversations and thus creates in Grgas's words, characters trapped in electronic imagery (ibid 97). Through the African family copying patterns of American medialized culture, addiction to electronic media is parodied as well as their infiltration in the structure of human relationships, which is true both for Americans and immigrants who accept new cultural values in their wish to be assimilated.

Baudrillard states that reality has taken over the hiperreality of codes and simulations. We are now led by the simulation principle instead of the old principle of reality. Purposes have disappeared, we are birthed by models (Baudrillard, 2001: 51). Characters in the novel Americanah become consumers of these simulations and direct participants of a postmodern world ruled by hyperreality. Various examples in the novel confirm this thesis but we can highlight in particular Ifemelu's fear from leaving the house as a product of being informed on crime in American streets. Uju remains centred in reality in terms of awareness that the everyday is susceptible to various media interpretations: If you keep watching television you'll start believing this is constantly happening. Do you know how much crime there is in Nigeria? It's just that they don't report about it back home like they do here (Adichie 2015: 119). This mocks American social paranoia and media content that offers fertile grounds for developing groundless fears. This also opens one of the key issues of this paper, the difference, or the sameness of content in Nigerian and American media. As we stated in the theoretical introduction to this paper, media companies completely take over content from global media companies due to economic profitability. Since the media in Africa copies other content, violence in foreign countries is reported on more often than violence in their own land. The African subject therefore creates an illusion of safety in Africa due to the consummation of reality construed in such a way, and sees the West as an area of robbery and violence. This is just one example of how media imperialism influences media consumers to shape their experience of Africa in relation to the West.

In dissecting TV and written media, the novel posits the idea on how various forms of western media content open up spaces which can easily be filled with xenophobia and stereotypes on black men which then lead to the development of racism. Western media seem to contain signifiers of the African world reduced to safari, starving children or beautiful[123] white women helping Africans in need. In this sense the image of objective African reality is never fully transmitted and an image with no actual basis in reality is created in the mind of the consumer of such content, in Baudrillard’s terms, hyperreality which interprets the African man as an Other who needs to be helped by the Western world. We can read one of Said's definitions of orientalism from this, i.e. an orientalism as a way of thinking based on the epistemological and ontological difference between the East and West (see Said, 1999: 25). Such a media metonymic view of culture, more precisely, relating Africa with poverty and weakness in the minds of media consumers, has very obscure consequences both on black and on white people. These negative reflections and the feeling of guilt felt by the whites towards the blacks are shown in the novel through the character of Kimberly, a woman in whose family Ifemelu works as a babysitter. She feels an unnecessary need to treat Ifemelu with guilty conscience for something she did not do, and in her excessive care not to hurt Ifemelu's racial feelings, repeatedly apologizes for her own or someone else's behaviour towards the protagonist. The reason for this is the already mentioned media-construed hyperreality positioning Africans at the margins of society, shaping an image of a helpless subject requiring a special mode of behaviour.

The novel also questions how the media become a sort of eschatology of redemption, that is, how the media aim to heal the feeling of guilt alongside creating a collective amnesia of the history of slavery. One example is the part in the novel where students watch the series Roots in class and the word nigger is censored. One of the female students, whose views Ifemelu supports, says that the censorship of such words will not help in eradicating racism in America: If the word was used in this form, then it should be shown in that way (Adichie 2015: 142) Moderating reality in TV and written media leads to the impossibility to see the full picture which creates the illusion of racism being eradicated from American society and makes it impossible for the white majority to relate to those who were subjected to such xenophobia.


6. Ifemelu's colonization of the mind and metatextuality as a counter-narrative and media space for resistance

The violent mechanisms of media influence we mentioned earlier result in accepting western cultural imperatives and reshaping Ifemelu's self. Guarracino categorizes the novel as immigrant fiction so the balancing of the protagonist between two cultures is the expected outcome (see Guarracino 2015: 8). We should note that Ifemelu negatively perceives previously mentioned changes of cultural identity and at first decisively keeps the postulates of African culture, but faced with an extremely violent media apparatus and American discourses, she soon herself becomes a consumer of American culture. Existing in a new social context leads to being subjugated to imposed western aesthetical imperatives which Ifemelu frowned upon, when she analyzed Ginku's and Uju's transformation. The process of transformation in her cultural identity begins by copying television presenters’ accents[124] with the aim of suppressing her own idiolect by imitating Afro-Americans. As one of the most representative units of culture, language is the first thing to be replaced in the process of displacing cultural identity, i.e. in shaping a sort of transculturalism of the individual. Ifemelu is unhappy with American everyday life and fears violence and robbery in the streets, as a result of consuming media representations as if they were real, so during her first months in the U.S. she barely leaves her apartment. Adichie offers an overview of TV content opening up spaces for Ifemelu's desires and fetishizations of western models of behaviour:

She watched the same series she watched in Nigeria. The Fresh Prince of Bel Air and A Different World and she discovered new ones she did not know before, Friends and the Simpsons, but she loved the commercials best. She longed for the life they showed, a life filled with happiness with a sparkling solution for all problems, through shampoos, cars and ready-made food, and this in her mind became the true America (...) (Adichie 2015: 118).

In spending her days wandering through the media imagery, the protagonist tries to implement the content of commercials in her everyday life. Thus she is introduced to the American culture of overeating and consciously becomes its consumer, trying to satisfy her emotional hunger for food unavailable in Africa. The same media impose the western aesthetic imperative of beauty and a gap is created between desiring such constructs and the consequences of the overeating culture. We might see a two-fold decentralization of the subject created through the media here; firstly, its decentralization is manifested in the impossibility to coexist in two cultures. Due to her insight in her own colonization of the mind, the protagonist is aware of the half-Americanization which cannot be reconciled with the dominant African identity which leads to her feeling lost i.e. decentralized. Secondly, succumbing to opposing forms of media content results in excess weight as a product of being fascinated by excessive food intake on the one hand and on the other hand in the fetishization of thinness which is a result of reading fashion magazines.

Browsing through these magazines, the protagonist defines the aesthetic imperative of the female body imposed by them:

And so, three black women in perhaps two thousand magazines and all of them are either mixed race or it is not obvious they are black so they might be Indian or Puerto Rican or something like that. None of them is dark. None of them looks like me, and this means these magazines won’t advise me on the makeup I should use. Look, this article tells you to pinch your cheeks until they blush and it is expected that all readers have cheeks that blush once you pinch them. This article talks about different hair products for “everyone” – and “everyone” here means blondes, brunettes and redheads. I don’t belong to any of these categories (Adichie 2015: 299).

Texts such as these produce what Spivak terms epistemological violence, i.e. a kind of diverse project of constructing a colonial subject as an Other, with the simultaneous and asymmetrical obliteration of all traces of the Other,  and what is happening here is actually the simultaneous and asymmetrical obliteration of the trace of this Other in its precarious Subjectivity (Spivak, 2013). The burden of otherness in this context is carried by Ifemelu, but here the personal suggests the collective traumatic impulse created through this type of exclusion from the media space. The author dissects content of women's fashion magazines and tries to dismantle the construct of the aesthetic imperative for female beauty so that Ifemelu’s reading of exclusive, almost racist texts, represents an end to the passive acceptance of xenophobic content. Ifemelu is no longer a passive subject and is raised to the level of an active agent who starts her own blog on racial issues to warn about the obscurity of giving space to such content in the media.

Parts of the blog are inserted in the narrative tissue of the novel and function as independent metatexts questioning the general media racism. The divergence from the realist style, i.e. metatextual forms, highlight the already mentioned optimistic view in relation to the media. The author does not see the media exclusively as producers of otherness and xenophobia, she sees in them the possibility for empowering the voices of those who have been silenced or discriminated. The success[125] of the blog and the collective of discriminated women created in the comment section below the posts, indicate a positive attitude towards the availability of publishing one’s own content on webpages and we see the blog as a counter narrative to the previously listed types of content and a sort of media space for resistance.


7. Media imperialism and the westernization of the Lagos society

Already at the beginning of the novel we can see the media imperialism in Nigeria. The author profiles a range of characters not interested in Nigerian art. Ifemelu for example does not know anything about Nigerian films because the local TV program mainly offers Americanized content (Ibid., 19, 20). We perceive two stages in the process of colonization of the mind which we have explained in the theoretical part. Once they finish their formal education in colonial schools, the protagonists seek Americanized media content and so the westernization of the individual's mind is continued through his consummation of western-centric media.

In addition to economic profitability of media imperialism which we have already mentioned, the reason for this westernization of TV and newspaper content are also returnees such as Ifemelu. Her return to Lagos represents the height of analyzing the obscurity of the colonization of the African mind and she is reluctant to admit she herself experiences Lagos as an attack which means she has become an Americanah. In this context Fanon's ideas are realized on how the subject returning from abroad must be radically changed (see Fanon 2008: 13). Returnees have high positions, better work conditions and benefits in relation to those who have not gained an education abroad. Years spent in Europe and America have westernized their taste and they use their positions of power to consciously or unconsciously promote ideas of the West. We can find proof for such ideas in Ifemelu's journalist work for the Zoe magazine which serves as an excellent example of how media imperialism reigns in African written media. This magazine, due to a westernized taste of the journalists, and cost-effectiveness, produces articles equivalent to those in the West. The paradox and gap created through such an electronic colonization is manifested in absurdities such as the recommendation by the editor for a Sunday broccoli soup, which is impossible to find on Nigerian markets or writing about clothes most Nigerians cannot afford (Ibid., p. 421). Ifemelu opposes such copying of content from American tabloids and warns of social problems caused by imposing western imperatives in the economic and political environment unfavourable for their realization. In this sense an analogy is created between advertising and prostitution postulating the idea that young women sell their bodies in order to afford what is offered by the media or become slaves to rich men for the same reason (Ibid., str. 424). In other words, cultural patterns of Americanized behaviour are removed to an unattainable African subcontext turning the majority population into a mass that fetshizes everything coming from the West. Due to this unachievable consumerism, there is a collective sense of unsatisfaction in Lagos, stemming from the consummation of westernized or colonized media content. Adichie uses an excellent syntagm to name the side-effects of the newly formed social functioning: addiction culture (Ibid., str. 424). This does not only mean being addicted to money the African subject needs to acquire in order to buy advertised products under international prices, but being addicted to seeing oneself through western mechanisms, i.e. the total dependence on the West. This is therefore a colonialism mediated through the media which will, unlike the colonialist exploiting human bodies and land, exploit the human mind and thus create a new slavery dynamic of functioning.


8. Conclusion

Through analysing the novel Americanah,we have attempted to show the correlation and issue of the African subject and media on two levels. The first one deals with the African immigrant in the U.S. and his reception of those types of media content which open up the spaces for exclusion and xenophobia consequently leading to racism. We analyzed subjective constructs of media representations through the perspective of the protagonist. In this we aimed to show how the metonimization of the African continent in the sense of representing an incomplete picture of objective reality, makes the African immigrant feel like a marginalized and helpless Other in relation to the white man who has been elevated to the level of a humanitarian through media tools, i.e. someone who helps the black man by having the obligation to treat him with compassion and pity. The novel offers a sharp critique of women’s magazines and the way they have imposed western aesthetic imperatives. The author negates their content by showing the consequences of insecurity and decentralization such texts may have on the self-perception of non-Western girls and women. As a result of all of this, the novel deals with the westernization of cultural identities of non-Western immigrants and the perception of the African self as the cause for the exclusion from dominant systems, as we have shown in the analysis of suppressing originally adopted cultural patterns in some characters of the novel.

On another level we talked about media imperialism in Nigerian media which is evident in the novel when the protagonist returns to Lagos. Media imperialism, as the newest form of colonialism, results in a decentralized subject torn between a self-reception determined by the West mediated through the media and the objective reality which cannot be framed within such media constructs. We noted several times how the displacement of western cultural patterns to a context which does not offer the possibility of their realization results in a state of general unfulfillment for the consumer of colonized magazines. We attempted to offer various examples of how cultural identities are displaced, how one’s self is suppressed and how bodies or cultures are whitened as a result of consuming media which impose strict, models of appearance, thinking and behaviour defined by Western tastes.

The blog written by the protagonist and her journalist work is offered as an opposing narrative to these media practices, and through these the author appeals to a media accepting the heterogeneity of races and cultures and the necessity to adapt content to the needs and possibilities of its consumers. We interpret the metatextual style, i.e. parts of Ifemelu's blog in the narrative tissue of the novel, as a sort of media space for opposing the objectification and construing of the African continent and its population as read, seen and heard in some media.


[111]  This paper will focus on the problem of colonizing the Eastern mind, but we can assume that the same tools may be used for analysing the patterns of the colonization of the mind in any other non-Western area.

[112]  The book titled Decolonising the Mind: The Politics of Language in African Literature, influenced by Fanon, was published in 1986.

[113]  Numerous literary works question and undermine the imposing of western values instead of taking account of African needs in the education system. For example the novel God's Bits of Wood (1960) by the Senegalese author Ousmane Sembène deals with education in Senegal which sees facts on Europe as more important than facts on Africa so that students are better acquainted with the geography of France than Senegal. The protagonist of the novel, N'Deye Touti reads only European writers because she believes there is nothing she can learn from African authors (Sembène 1970: 58) which is also a product of imposed French literary education that values exclusively European literary history. Thiong'o himself will follow this theoretical position in the novel Weep Not, Child (1964) by positing the idea that the implementation of European education into African education results in the colonization of the mind.

[114]  Military colonialism, Christian colonialism, mercantile colonialism and electronic colonialism.

[115]  If we take into account that most countries in Africa gained their independence in the 1950s and 1960s, it is clear that one type of colonialism has merely been switched for a different type, in McPhail's words, by electronic colonialism.

[116]  Electronic colonialism theory.

[117]  BBC or CNN for example.

[118]  In addition to the interplay between the narrative past and present, there are two narrative strands in the novel. The first one deals with Ifemelu's departure for America, and the second one follows her high-school sweetheart Obinze and his social mobility. Before getting rich he travels to the United Kingdom, a society which similar to the U.S., also struggles with issues of racism, stereotypization and cultural divide. The basic plot deals with Ifemelu's and Obinze's relationship, but this is not the focus of the present paper.

[119]  The titles of the novels are not the same, Adichie modifies DeLillo's title by adding the letter h (Americanah).

[120]  Grgas explains that this novel focuses on the positioning of electronic media within the American society and DeLillo presents consciousness contaminated by a surge of American visual cultural icons, through which he analyses the irreversible loss of one way of life exchanged for entering the era of predominant imagery (Grgas 2000: 97). Americana is not the only novel by DeLillo dealing with such issues. A great number of his novels such as White Noise, Libra, End Zone, problematize obscure influences of media representations on today's society and criticize experience that is mediated through the media.

[121]  In the context of a postmodern megalopolis which according to Fredric Jameson is crowded with information and thus becomes an economic centre (see Jameson 1991: 98).

[122]  Just as previously mentioned female characters, Uju's partner uses creams for skin whitening. Through this motive, Adichie aims to highlight how imposed aesthetic imperatives of the West are not related to gender, i.e. not only women fall victim to them.

[123]  In this part of the novel Ifemelu discusses a newspaper article on an American celebrity helping starving children in Ethiopia with Kimberly and Laura. Revolted by such media constructs, Ifemelu ironically comments on her thinness: And she is just as thin as the children that surround her, but she is thin by her own choice and they do not have the right to choose (Adichie 2015: 167). This criticizes charity work as well, by questioning whether people do good in order to support those in need in Africa or whether this is merely the wish to achieve a certain type of prestige brought on by such activities in society: There was a certain luxury in doing charity work with which she could not identify (Adichie 2015: 174).

[124]  Here we highlight an interesting quote showing how Ifemelu's learning, of both language and culture, is a conscious process, i.e. a certain goal she wishes to achieve: And her accent was convincing. She perfected it by carefully listening to friends and TV presenters silencing their T's, softly rolling their R's, starting their sentences with “so” and smoothly sliding that constant response “oh really” over their lips, but her pronunciation was too controlled, a matter of conscious decision (Adichie 2015: 178).

[125]  In writing her blog, Ifemelu gains a great number of followers which brings her a high income. Here we must note that this blog may be an example of postmodern irony. Although Ifemelu aims to dismantle aesthetic constructs, her blog is funded, among other things, through advertisements showing white long-necked models (Adichie 2015: 306). In this sense Ifemelu is aware that her actions are wrong and contradictory, but keeps on with them.





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Spivak, Gayatri, Chakravorty: A Critique of Postcolonial Reason, Accessed: 4 September 2018


Pozapadnjivanje i kolonizacija afričkog uma posredstvom medija




Rad problematizira fenomen kolonizacije uma koji je na području Afrike uslijedio završetkom kolonizatorskog sustava. Pozapadnjivanje te napuštanje vlastitih kulturnih obrazaca i preuzimanje zapadnih modela ponašanja uvjetovano je, među ostalim, prodorom zapadnih medija i njihovom nasilnom propagandom. U radu će se analizom romana Amerikana (2013) nigerijske autorice Chimamande Ngozi Adichie prikazati kako medijski imperijalizam i elektronički kolonijalizam izmještaju afričke kulturne identitete te će se na primjeru likova iz romana prikazati kako konzumeri takvih sadržaja gubitkom koherentnog identiteta postaju lakomanipulirajuća masa. U radu će se ponuditi odgovor na pitanje o tome koliko su mediji utjecali na fetišizaciju zapadnih vrijednosti, izbjeljivanje kulture te naposljetku gubitak pretkolonijalnih vrijednosti.


Ključne riječi: medijski imperijalizam, teorija elektroničke kolonizacije, rasizam, pozapadnjivanje uma, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.




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Pregledni članak
Review article
Primljeno: 22.02.2019.



Silva Kalčić

Sveučilište u Splitu, Filozofski fakultet i Sveučilište u Zagrebu,
Tekstilno-tehnološki fakultet
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Referencijalni simbolizam i semiotički aspekt djela umjetnosti i dizajna

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Destinacija: bezimena, izložba Nadije Mustapić i Tonija Meštrovića u mediju billboarda (2017.) i plakat za predstavu Fine mrtve djevojke u režiji Dalibora Matanića (Gavella, Zagreb, 2013.) primjeri su djela umjetnosti u javnom prostoru (fotografije na standardnom oglasnom mjestu u formatu billboard plakata) i djela dizajna u javnom prostoru (podjednako grada i masovnih medija, u formatu kazališnog plakata) u kontekstu nacionalnih vizualnih umjetnosti u suvremeno doba. S ovim sam primjerima povezala tri teme: 1. Agamben dispozitiv koji nastaje iz jukstapozicije ili interpenetracije odnosa moći (na primjer kroz guvernementalizam) i odnosa znanja (diskurzivnih i nediskurzivnih), prakse umjetnosti sagledava kao formacije odnosa moći. 2. Sažimanje vremena prema Agambenu osiromašuje, ispražnjava kulturalne znakove, pretvarajući ih u „nulte znakove“ ili „slabe znakove“. Boris Groys zamjećuje da takvi „slabi“ znakovi trijumfiraju nad snažnim i „moćnim“ znakovima našeg vremena, onima autoriteta, tradicije, moći, ali i onim snažnim znakovima pobune, strasti, heroizma. 3. „Loša slika“ u smislu u kojemu taj termin koristi Hito Steyerl (engl. „Poor Image“) u mreži digitalnih medija masovno dijeljene i reproducirane slike.


Ključne riječi: umjetnost u javnom prostoru, dispozitiv, empatijski dizajn, aktivistička umjetnost, komunikacijski aspekt slike, epistemologija medija.



Nadija Mustapić i Toni Meštrović svojom izložbom Destinacija: bezimena (engl. Destination: Distitled, 2017. u okviru niza izložbi na plakatnim oglasnim mjestima pod nazivom Ploha/Površina) u mediju billboarda u Zagreb transponiraju situaciju iz Rijeke, aktualnog stanja broda „Galeb“ u iščekivanju remonta nakon kojeg će uz dobivanje novih komercijalnih, primarno turističkih sadržaja postati muzej. Bit će to muzej „tri totalitarizma“, što komentira Boris Postnikov u siječnju 2019. godine: „Prije nego što su ga proslavile Titove ekskurzije, „Galeb“ je naime nekoliko godina plovio pod zastavama fašističke Italije i nacističke Njemačke: u njegovoj povijesti bila je to marginalna epizoda, ali sasvim dovoljna, eto, da se pomoću nje nakaradnom naknadnom pameću plasira nova revizionistička papazjanija o izjednačavanju ‘svih totalitarizama’“.[126] Za izložbu Destinacija: bezimena Mustapić i Meštrović fotografirali su vanjski zid jedne palube broda „Galeb“ na kojemu su vidljivi tragovi uklonjenih-demontiranih ploča malih dimenzija s imenima znamenitih gostiju broda, informacijama o plovnim putovima i destinacijama (na brodu su se donosile odluke, potpisivali dokumenti… na primjer, tijekom Pete konferencije Pokreta nesvrstanih u Šri Lanki, na brodu je organiziran veliki prijem za sve državnike prisutne u Colombu) te s navedenim brojčanim podatkom o nautičkim miljama prijeđenim na pojedinom putovanju. Na billboardu su jukstaponirani tragovi nečeg sto je skinuto i tragovi nečeg što bi moglo biti ono što je skinuto; vraćeno u nekom drugom obliku. Autori izložbe postavljaju pitanje o tome na koje načine možemo neke dokumentarne artefakte koji iz nekog razloga danas nisu poželjni, dalje tretirati i gledati. Naravno da se referiraju na uklonjene povijesne slojeve, ali u nadovezivanju na razne druge dokumente i fakte iz povijesti i na vrijeme i ideologiju nesvrstanih. Ovaj rad je najava većeg projekta, kao dio aspekta šire tematike vezane uz temu odnosa spram povijesti i revizionizma povijesti. Podtema je estetska dimenzija i „poetičnost“ materijala, koja govori o vremenskom i ideološkom odmaku od njegovog izvornog oblika; zida koji je delapidiran, s tragovima korozije, dok po detalju okruglog okna na fotografiji prepoznajemo da je riječ o brodu, sa slojevima boje koja se ljušti i tragovima nečega sto je bilo na nekom posvećenom mjestu, naziva koji je postao nijem, „bezimen“. S druge je strane „to nešto“ što je uklonjeno tretirano kao arhivski i dokumentarni materijal. Zid s kojeg su skinuti napisi tretiran je kao onaj „bez naziva“, što je generički naziv koji se često koristi u umjetnosti, a ovdje je u nazivu rada Destinacija: bezimena korišten kao koncepcija, ujedno evocirajući pitanje o destinaciji putovanja – broda (u užem smislu) ili društva (u širem). Razmišljajući o načinu na koji raditi s takvim artefaktom – metalnom pločicom koja čini dio arhiva memorije ili političke memorije jedne zajednice, autori su odlučili prenijeti ga frotažno na papir, koji je efemeran-manje trajan i manje izdržljiv, fragilan materijal naspram tvrdoći metala i ruzine tijekom nastanka frotaža; otiskivana slika polako dolazi do vidljivosti, i istodobno grafit kojim je frotaž izvođen ostavlja trag i po rukama izvoditelja postupka otiskivanja – tretiranje materijala rukom ima ponovno snažnu dimenziju poetičnosti.

Frotaž je prijenos slike koji ima drugačije značenje od prenošene slike i svojom je „kvalitetom“ „slaba“ ili „loša slika“ u smislu u kojemu taj termin koristi Hito Steyerl, engl. „poor image“. Prema Steyerlu loša slika je kopija „u pokretu“. Njezina je kvaliteta niska, njena je razlučivost ispod standardne. To je duh slike, preview, itinerantna slika, reproducirana u drugim medijskim kanalima. „Loša slika“ je „lumpenproleterijat“ u klasnom društvu pojavnosti/prikaza, prenesena, preuzeta i dijeljena. „Loša slika“ tendira apstrakciji: to je vizualna ideja u svom samom nastanku[127]. Ovdje figurira kao „opće mjesto“, utjelovljenje kontinuiranog značaja problema nestanka, iščeznuća, brisanja „originala“ i pokušaj njegova vraćanja. Isto kao što su tragovi hrđe na zidu na mjestu skinutih pločica, osim što su konkretna lokacija na „Galebu“ i u širem nacionalnom kontekstu lokacija brisanja kolektivne memorije na socijalistički i antifašistički sloj (uz preimenovanje trga, micanja spomen-ploča, sklanjanje spomenika…) u neposrednoj prošlosti, svojevrsno „opće mjesto“ brisanja.


Destinacija: bezimena, izložba Nadije Mustapić i Tonija Meštrovića u mediju billboarda,
Ulica kneza Branimira, Zagreb, od 7. do 20. prosinca 2017.


U modernizmu, avangardni (versus lartpurlatistički) diskurs umjetnosti doveo je do toga da je umjetnička „profesija“ postala deprofesionalizirana. De-profesionalizacija umjetnosti stavila je umjetnika u nepovoljnu poziciju u društvu jer je često interpretirana od strane publike kao povratak umjetnika u status neprofesionalizma. „Prema tome, suvremeni umjetnik počinje se percipirati kao profesionalni neprofesionalac – a svijet umjetnosti kao prostor “umjetničke zavjere” (što je referentni Baudrillardov pojam). Društvena učinkovitost te zavjere čini se da predstavlja tajnu koja se samo sociološki može dešifrirati (na primjer u tekstovima Bourdieua i njegove škole). Može se govoriti i o "deprofesionalizaciji svih profesija". Sažimanje vrijeme osiromašuje, ispražnjuje sve naše kulturne znakove i aktivnosti - pretvarajući ih u nulte znakove ili radije, kako ih Agamben naziva, slabe znakove. Takvi slabi znakovi su znakovi predstojećeg kraja vremena koje je već oslabljeno njihovim nadolaženjem, već manifestirajući manjak vremena koje bi bilo potrebno za proizvodnju i promišljanje snažnih, bogatih znakova. Međutim, na kraju vremena ti mesijanski slabi znakovi trijumfiraju nad jakim znakovima našeg svijeta - jakim znakovima autoriteta, tradicije i moći, ali i jakim znakovima pobune, žudnja, junaštva ili revolta. Govoreći o slabim znakovima mesijanstva, Agamben očito ima na umu “slab mesijanizam” – što je pojam koji je uveo Walter Benjamin. Ali se također treba prisjetiti (čak i ako se Agamben ne prisjeti) da je u grčkoj teologiji pojam "kenosis" označavao lik Krista – život, patnju i smrt Kristovu kao poniženje ljudskog dostojanstva i iščeznuće znakova božanske slave. U tom smislu Kristova figura također postaje slab znak koji se može lako (ne)razumijevati kao znak slabosti.“[128]

Grupa Gorgona bila je predana bavljenju ničime na fotografijama praznih polica, ponavljanjem reprodukcija Mona Lise do bjelina praznih stranica Josipa Vanište, ili pak Manglesovim prekrivanjima raznih tiskovina najčešće crnom bojom.[129] Od lipnja prošle godine Nadija Mustapić i Toni Meštrović kontinuirano odlaze na teritorij riječke Lučke uprave (za svaki je posjet potrebno posebno ishoditi dozvolu ulaska) te snimaju i prate sve što se događa na brodu „Galeb“, radeći audio (zvukova broda, odnosno tišine na brodu, napinjanja užadi, pucketanja planktona u potpalublju), pa video i potom fotografske zapise stanja broda, svih njegovih prostora u raznim vremenskim uvjetima, kao dio rada na njihovoj instalaciji u nastajanju namijenjene za javnu izvedbu u okviru projekta Rijeka – Europska prijestolnica kulture 2020., u okviru kojega će „konfrontirati“ snimke sadašnjeg stanja broda tijekom i nakon remonta čiji se završetak planira upravo te 2020. godine. Brod je porinut 1936. godine kao brzo utilitarno plovilo pogonjeno s dva Fiatova stroja, za prijevoz banana i potom mesa u Libiju za fašističke Italije, a nakon kapitulacije Italije postaje njemački minopolagač što ga je 1944. u Kvarnerskom zaljevu potopila saveznička avijacija. Splitski „Brodospas“ je 1948. izvukao brod, ubrzo je pregrađen u školski, figurirajući kao službena jahta doživotnog predsjednika Jugoslavije J. B. Tita i služio je promociji i međunarodnoj identifikaciji jednog ideologijskog sustava. Završio je svoj radni vijek 1989. godine u drugom društveno-političkom sustavu kao reprezentativno plovilo snažnog simboličkog naboja. U „doba Tita“, zbog ideje prenošenja poruke o mogućnosti trećeg, nesvrstanog puta kao najznačajnije povijesne alternativne mogućnosti u polariziranom svijetu Hladnog rata između jedina dva političko-ideološka i ekonomsko-vojna bloka, bio je zvan i „Brodom mira. Posljednja namjena broda kao plutajućeg (a ne plovećeg) objekta–muzeja zapečatila je njegovu mogućnost značajnije transformacije jer će brod-muzej- spomenik kulture fiksirati doživljaj i “čitanje” tog prostora, ponajviše kroz okvire prošlosti u značenju referentnog sustava, odnosno povijest će postati formom. Brod će postati suvenir (što je pojam deriviran iz franc. riječi za „sjećanje“) totalitarnih režima, kao “četvrti brod” koji u sebi sadrži tri prethodna – talijanski, njemački i jugoslavenski. Agamben naziva nepamtljivim sjećanje koje se zapravo ničega ne sjeća dovoljno oštro. I baš zbog toga nepamtljivo, kao nešto što izmiče, postaje najsnažnijim sjećanjem.[130] Autobiografska dimenzija (osobni kontekst) izložbe Nadije Mustapić i Tonija Meštrovića upisuje se na ispražnjeno (propitano) mjesto političke ideologije. Izrazito provokativna situacija vraćanja imena koje se briše mogla je izazvati reakciju negalerijske publike, invazivnu, na plakatu, što bi autori nadalje snimili (dokumentirali). Podnarativ rada je aktualna situacija poistovjećivanja antifašizma s totalitarizmom, ali i puno širi problem nacionalnog odnosa spram povijesti i revizionizma povijesti.


Članak Barbare Surk objavljen u New York Times u 25. prosinca 2017. dijagnosticira
„Titovu jahtu kao pokretača kulturne renesanse“ (u slobodnom prijevodu naslova na engl. izvorniku
„Banking on Tito's Yacht to Steer a Cultural Renaissance “)
Brod „Galeb“ je u članku nazvan „plovećom rezidencijom“.


Giorgio Agamben dispozitivom- alatom za konstrukciju slike, koji nastaje iz jukstapozicije ili interpenetracije odnosa moći (na primjer kroz guvernementalizam) i odnosa znanja (diskurzivnih i nediskurzivnih), prakse umjetnosti sagledava kao formacije odnosa moći. Dispozitiv društva je sastavljen od diskurzivnog ponašanja kao što je govor i misao temeljena na zajedničkom/kolektivnom znanju, i ne-diskurzivnog ponašanja ili činjenja temeljenog na znanju ili spoznaji. Način na koji Mustapić i Meštrović upotrebljavaju fotografiju i jezik moguće je povezati i s Agambenovim konceptom aparata u knjizi Che cos’è un dispositivo?  (Što je dispozitiv?, prema talijanskom izvorniku) iz 2006., s engleskim izdanjem What is an Apparatus? (and Other Essays) [Šta je aparat (i drugi eseji]) iz 2009.

Povodom velike retrospektivne izložbe Vlaste Delimar, Vlasta Delimar: To samja u Muzeju suvremene umjetnosti Zagreb 2014. godine, Marina Gržinić je analizirala pozivnicu za izložbu i performans Vlaste Delimar održane u Zagrebu u rujnu 2013. pod naslovom La Chambre Claire. „Na pozivnici je prikazan foto-negativ gornje polovice tijela na kojem piše to sam ja, i znači, mislimo, to je tijelo Vlaste Delimar. Natpis je razumljiv samo onima koji razumiju hrvatski ili neki drugi slavenski jezik. Na negativu je i posveta napisana malim slovima na francuskom, “Pour Jerman et Roland Barthes“.“ Gržinić također zaključuje da rad Vlaste Delimar nosi gestualni pečat narcizma; da je autorica toliko “nepopravljivo“ fokusirana na samu sebe da u isto vrijeme djeluje kao oznaka u mjestu i vremenu i kao ikona. „S takvim je opsesivnim fokusom započela prije 35 godina; situacija je danas takva da je bivanje u centru pažnje postalo normalno, uz novu medijsku tehnologiju, a posebno uz Internet… Delimar tako stalno iznova uprizoruje internaliziranu svjesnost konstantne usredotočenosti na sebstvo, gotovo kao da nas se netko sprema fotografirati u bilo koje vrijeme i na bilo kojem mjestu.“[132] No sad vidimo da navodno “egzistencijalan i banalan prikaz Vlaste Delimar“ u negativu fotografije s rukom napisanom izjavom “to sam ja“ uopće nije onakav kakvim se čini. „Pred nama nije Vlasta Delimar već fotografija kao moćan dispozitiv, ishodište performativnosti, povijesti, teorije i utjecaja.“ Tijelo Vlaste  Delimar je diskurzivno tijelo, „oprava“ njezina rada a način kako ona upotrebljava fotografiju i jezik moguće je povezati s konceptom aparata iz teorijskog rada Giorgia Agambena „i na njegovo čitanje Foucaulta, na temu kako su danas sastavljeni sklopovi praksi, politike, teorije.“[133] Naime, Agamben zapaža da je ”dispozitiv” odlučujući tehnički termin u napisima Michela Foucaulta. Foucault ga upotrebljava često, iako ga nikad nije precizno definirao, nadasve od druge polovice 1970-ih kad se počeo baviti onim što je imenovao guvernementalizmom odnosno upravljanjem ljudima. Sustav različitih polja praksi kao što je umjetnost ili politika, kaže, više ne možemo razumjeti jednodimenzionalno, nego na način nekog aparata ili kao što kaže Agamben, nekog “skupa“ („postava“) koji virtualno uključuje sve jezično i nejezično… Foucault ih naziva „univerzalijama“, presjecištima odnosa moći i odnosa znanja; po tome su prakse umjetnosti zapravo formacije odnosa moći. Vlasta Delimar se na fotografiji To sam ja, prema Marini Gržinić, služi jezikom kao takvim, i jezikom fotografskog aparatusa i „iako nitko na međunarodnoj razini ne može razumjeti što znači „to sam ja“, sve je upisano na tijelu u foto-negativu“[134]. Hitu Steyerl u gore spomenutom tekstu U obranu slabih slika navodi primjer glavnog lika, glumca koji ne može pronaći posao u filmu Deconstructing Harry (1997.) Woodyja Allena. Lik je prikazan izvan fokusa, tj. njegova slika je dosljedno zamagljena što izgleda kao tehnički problem, no uistinu vizualizira njegov primarni problem – on ne može naći posao. Njegov nedostatak definicije pretvara se u problem njegove materijalnosti, fizičkog bića. Fokus je identificiran kao klasni položaj, položaj udobnosti/spokojstva i privilegija, dok bivanje izvan fokusa umanjuje njegovu važnost kao slike. Suvremena hijerarhija slika ne temelji se na njihovoj oštrini, već također i primarno na rezoluciji. „Slika visoke razlučivosti izgleda briljantnije i impresivnije, ona je više mimetička i magična, zastrašujuća i zavodljiva od „slabe“ ili „loše“ slike, „poor image“. Kaže se da je bogatija. Mnogi avangardni, esejistički i nekomercijalni analogni filmovi uskrsnuli su kao „slabe“ slike, „poor image“. Sviđalo se to njihovim autorima ili ne“, zaključuje Hito Steyerl koji u Sarajevu svjedoči trenutku u kojemu muzej filma gubi državnu potporu i dolazi do neorganizirane privatizacije, uz novi problem autorstva, piratstva i krađe filmova.

Marina Gržinić Vlastu Delimar naziva “skupom“, „ansamblom“ (što je prijevod Agambenovog termina assemblage, franc.) koji se bavi najopipljivijim aspektima fotografije i performansa, moći i uvjeta pod kojima dolazimo do znanja koristeći strategiju i formaciju. „Vlasta Delimar smatra da lik na fotografiji nije ona, već neko drugi; to je i navodi na izjavu da to jest ona (jer to, naravno, nije ona) te se pritom služi jezikom, zapravo barem dvama jezicima, od kojih je jedan jezik fotografskog aparata, a drugi jezik kao takav.“[135] U metaizaciji (njem. Metaisierung) perceptivnog čina, samoreferentnoj vezi između reprezentacije i reprezentiranog/prikazanog, promatrač je u slici. Charles Sanders Peirce, kao prethodnik Ferdinanda de Saussurea u teoriji slike, semiotike slike odnosno semiotičkom idealizmu, podijelio je znakove na ikone (gdje postoji fizička sličnost između označitelja i referenta, na primjer na fotografiji neke osobe), indekse (gdje postoji kauzalni odnos između označitelja i referenta, kao što je otisak stopala neke osobe) i simbole (gdje je označitelj proizvoljan i proizašao iz vlastite kulture, kao što je ime neke osobe; Saussure simbole naziva "pravilnim znakovima"), dok engl. imenica an interpretant označava učinak simbola na osobu koja ga iščitava ili razumijeva. Kod promatranja forme umjetničkog djela (Clive Bell i pojam „significant form“ kojim u knjizi Art 1914. označava izvjesnu kombinaciju linija i boja, kao i plohe i odnose ploha koje u gledatelju pobuđuju estetski osjećaj) što je u ranom modernizmu bio prevladavajući način sagledavanja umjetničkog djela koji se skriva u autonomiji umjetnosti, van života samog, sve do Duchampovog poništenja estetske kvalitete umjetnosti te ona postaje „posljedicom mentalnog događaja“[136]. S tim u vezi otvara se tema denotacije i konotacije; denotacija je značenje koje forma ima za sve koji je koriste (inherentni smisao). Konotacija su posebne nijanse značenja, temeljene na emocionalnim i drugim subjektivnim čimbenicima, koju forma ima za pojedinog korisnika. Na primjer, u hrvatskom jeziku riječi mršav i žgoljav imaju istu denotaciju, ali različite konotacije. Simboli su za razliku od ikona i indeksa koji ne upućuju ni na šta izvan samih sebe za Piercea denotativni. Denotacija je eksplicitna (u dihotomiji eksplicitno/implicitno) identifikacija stvari (kod znanosti one imaju nepromjenjiva značenja), denotativni odnos je jednoznačan i neposredan, utvrđen kodom po konvenciji. Konotacija podrazumijeva širi raspon ideja, osjećaja i djelujućih tendencija koje se grupiraju oko znakova, kontekst ili okolnosti koje mogu biti unutarnje i vanjske (biofizičke, psihofizičke, društvene), vrijednosni sustav (kulturne konvencije, intencije) utvrđene podkodovima. Modernistički diskurs dadaistâ Mana Raya i Marcela Duchampa (strategija promjene značenja predmeta mijenjanjem njihovog konteksta), te konceptualne – lingvističke i semiotičke verzije Duchampove invencije ready-madea, na tragu stavova analitičke filozofije Ludwiga Wittgensteina razvio je dalje američki konceptualni umjetnik i teoretičar Joseph Kosuth (značenja predmeta ne proistječu iz njihova izgleda već jezik svijeta umjetnosti daje značenje predmetima), postmodernom uporabom kolažnog postupka zasnovanog na semantičkom premještanju predmeta i poruka te znakova, intertekstualnosti, fragmentarnosti, virtualnosti i simulacije. U njegovoj seriji prostornih instalacija Jedna i tri stolice, na engl. izvorniku One and Three Chairs(prvi rad u seriji nastaje 1959.)isti je predmet predstavljen u tri posve različita oblika: sastoji se od predmeta, crno-bijele fotografije predmeta u prirodnoj veličini i definicije predmeta iz rječnika prema ideji da svako dobro umjetničko djelovanje treba dovoditi umjetnost u pitanje propitujući njezinu prirodu te je potrebno prije svega razumijevati lingvističku pozadinu svih umjetničkih prijedloga.

Po pitanju okolnosti političkog trenutka nastanka pločica s podatcima o putovanjima broda „Galeb“, stvaranje nove klase bilo je vezano uz težnju nadilaženja svih dosadašnjih društvenih klasa u povijesti i stoga je deklarativno njen cilj stvaranje besklasnog društva i monopol nad resursima. S tim u vezi je Foucaultova teza o „upravljanju upravljanja”, odnosno „samoupravljanja”. Hegelijanski pojam Aufhebung (koji označava ukidanje na način podizanja na višu razinu onoga što je ukinuto) i Gramscijev model hegemonije pokazuju se idealnim primjerom za ono što je nova klasa u Jugoslaviji mogla postati, ali nikad u tome nije uspjela: trebala je i mogla biti neka vrsta intelektualnog vodstva.

U slobodnom nadovezivanju na misao Agambena, snaga geste izrasta iz nemoći – izražavanja, djelovanja, stvaranja. Po definiciji geste su prazne – ništa ne znače, nigdje ne vode i ništa ne čine; tamo gdje riječi ne uspijevaju imenovati istinu, tamo gdje djelovanje ne dostiže ideju dobra, tamo gdje akcija ne pogađa cilj – geste su znak radikalnog neuspjeha ili promašaja – u identifikaciji, komunikaciji, djelovanju, razmjeni. Epistemologija (prema Postmanovoj definiciji) medija postavlja pitanje medija kao epistemologije u odnosu spram istine, tj. odgovornosti (na primjer, tzv. masovnih medija), te je li on validan izvor znanja/spoznaje.  

Jacques Rancière pripisuje zajedničku estetiku politici i likovnoj umjetnosti. Dok teoretičari umjetnosti i kritičari u posljednjem desetljeću primjećuju da je „vizija novog umjetnika nepobitno politička“ jer on nastoji „suprotstaviti realnost političke akcije iluzijama umjetnosti zaključane u muzejima“ ili pak da se umjetnost „u posljednje vrijeme često miješa sa političkim djelovanjem“, aktivisti pokreta Occupy autorima izložbe zamjeraju da „žele protestni pokret zatvoriti u muzej“.[137] Peter Weibel na izložbi u ZKM-u u Karlsruheu 2013. pod nazivom global activism (art and conflict in the 21st century) pored umjetničkih radova prikazuje sakupljene dokumente, transparente, zapise sa blogova, odnosno procedure, taktike, strategije i metode „performativne demokracije“ (što je Weibelova nova odredinica-pojam). ‘Artivizam’ koji nastaje povezivanjem aktivizma i umjetnosti tako je nova umjetnička forma 21. stoljeća. U kontekstu umjetničkih strategija 1990-ih godina, Ursula Frohne je ustvrdila da politički događaji uvijek imaju estetsku dimenziju, nalazeći dodirne točke (političkog) aktivizma i (političke) umjetnosti: budući da i jedno i drugo djeluje u istom smjeru razotkrivanja skrivenih stanja i poredaka. Kod tzv. politizirane umjetnosti, prema Hitu Steyerlu, bitno je ne što je njome prikazano nego kako djeluje i koji je predmet njezina djelovanja, o čemu u mediju filma Jean-Luc Godard govori kao o nuždi ne stvaranja političkih filmova, već snimanjem filma kao bavljenja politikom, u dihotomiji spektakla i istraživanja – dramatske i dokumentarne forme.[138] Film se u visokom modernizmu često bavi političkim životom na način da ga stavlja u odnos jednačenja s osobnim životom, odnosno politička kinematografija je nužno intimistička; čak i kad je film o „velikim“ temama kao što su to građanska prava i građanski individualitet, one reflektiraju osobni život i intimna iskustva redatelja. U projektu Destinacija: bezimena Mustapić i Meštrović – nije riječ o političkoj umjetnosti, već o stvaranju umjetnosti politički, pri čemu je fokus ne na onome što pokazuje, već na ono što umjetnost čini i kako to čini.

U okviru istog serijala izložbi u mediju billboarda Ploha/Površina, iste 2017. godine izložena je fotografija performativnog klesarskog rada kojim nastaje natpis „Kako ja mogu biti nacionalist ako sam svjetski prvak?“. Riječ je o djelu Marka Markovića koji ekstrahira dio intervjua Mate Parlova (rođen 1948. u Imotskom, umro u Puli 2008.) danom Igoru Lasiću 2004., trajno ispisan na zidu Multimedijalnog kulturnog centra (MKC-a) u Splitu 2016.[139] Podizanjem ovakvog „alternativnog“ spomenika Marko Marković ga uistinu podiže – deklarativno: pravim i iskrenim ljudskim vrijednostima, suprotstavlja se dominantnim spomeničkim praksama i politikama te u trajno nasljeđe mladim generacijama ostavlja vrijednosti slobode govora, mira, tolerancije, razumijevanja i uvažavanja različitosti, za koje se bore najveći heroji, a mogu se reproducirati kroz sport; kao i kroz sam čin klesanja. Suverena iznimka je za Agambena forma pripadnosti bez uključenja. Ono što nipošto ne može biti uključeno, uključeno je u formi iznimke – nadovezuje Alain Badiou s pozicije neomarksističke filozofije[140]. Iznimka izražava upravo nemogućnost sustava da se u njemu uključenje poklopi s pripadnošću, da se svi njegovi dijelovi reduciraju na jednotu.


Nacionalist, izložba Marka Markovića, Branimirova ulica, Zagreb, od 23. lipnja do 5. srpnja 2017.


U siječnju 2013. godine u izlogu Kazališta Gavella i na standardnim oglasnim mjestima u središtu Zagreba postavljen je plakat aktualne predstave kazališta Gavella – Fine mrtve djevojke po tekstu Mate Matišića, u režiji Dalibora Matanića. Na plakatu je fotografija dva lika-kipa vjerske bižuterije, ponovno suvenira, Blažene Djevice Marije ili kolokvijalno, „Gospe“ preko kojih prelazi natpis „fine mrtve djevojke“, a s lijeve i desne strane nalaze se osnovni podaci o predstavi i naziv kazališta. U donjem dijelu plakata okomitog formata su male ikone sponzora. Autor naizgled koristi jezik empatijskog dizajna, no osjećaj za detalj kojemu se daje značaj kakav ima i cjelina pripisuje fotografiji na plakatu karakteristike fetišizma. Souvenir kao vjerska bižuterija je kič, laž u svom značenju označitelja kopije „uzvišenog originala“, loš ukus (estetski ukusi se uvijek potiru po suprotnosti). Pretjerivanje, "preobilje bez mjere" (Sloterdijkov termin) je “prava mjera našeg doba”. Pretjerivanje ("karnevalizacija") dovodi do apsurda (lat. absurdus: neskladan, neumjesan). Na plakatu za predstavu Fine mrtve djevojke porculanski kipovi Gospe fotografirani su ispred neutralne pozadine i bijele su boje; na jednoj je Gospi plavi plašt, a na drugoj bijeli sa zlatnim obrubom. Dvije Gospe (udvojena Gospa) stoje jedna iza druge, pri čemu je jedna aktivirana i straga obujmljuje onu u prvom planu koja joj uzvratno okreće lice, možda ga nudeći na poljubac, što je izravna aluzija na narativ predstave. Priča je to o dvije zaljubljene djevojke odnosno lezbijskom paru koji unajmljuju stan u jednoj zagrebačkoj zgradi masovnog stanovanja nadajući se anonimnosti. Ispod djevojaka međutim žive gazdarica, njezin povučeni suprug i agresivni sin koji želi zavesti jednu od njih pa je u neuspjehu takvog nauma napastvuje; a gazdarica tjera iz stana nemoralni lezbijski par...

Iako je svrha spomenute predstave borba protiv mržnje i prihvaćanje različitosti, dio javnosti je plakate shvatio kao provokaciju.[141] Primjer recentne provokativne neetičke poruke je grafit „Jedite bogate, a ne govna“ u javnom prostoru grada Zagreba što ga je fotografirao Duško Marušić (2015.) te je tu rečenicu objavila (postala) na svom facebook profilu Radnička fronta (9. ožujka 2015.). Primjer neetičke ilustracije je naslovnica francuskog satiričkog časopisa Charlie Hebdo,kao referenca na globalno poznat nesretni slučaj, pad ruskog vojnog aviona u Crno more u kojemu su poginula 64 člana ansambla Alexandrov, izvan Rusije poznatog kao Zbor Crvene armije.

Antički mislioci savjetovali su ljudima život u skladu s prirodom, smatrajući da je čovjek posljedica "igre" nužnosti i apsurda. U suvremeno doba nema nužnosti, dakle ostao je apsurd, svjesno prihvaćen i afirmiran od umjetnosti. Prema Gillu Dorflesu koji 1968. piše o kiču u djelu Kič: antologija lošeg ukusa[142], replika ne potiče kulturu i ukus, već publiku potiče na izjednačavanje u valorizaciji autentičnog remek djela i osrednje krivotvorine, prema Thorsteinu Veblenu “ukus se vulgarizira“.[143] Dorfles je smatrao da upravo kulturna industrija generira kič, jedan od primarnih sadržaja od sadržaja kulture masovnog društva gdje je neutralizirana svaka sposobnost razlikovanja između umjetnosti i života.


Vanja Cuculić, plakat za predstavu Fine mrtve djevojke; 2013. Naručitelj: Kazalište Gavella, Zagreb


Alternativni plakat objavljen na facebook grupi podrške plakatu, kao komentar
na negativno reagiranje islamske zajednice; islamska zajednica negativno reagira i
na varijantu Djevice Marije/Merjem u burki te je naziva posebno izrađenom s namjerom vrijeđanja muslimana.


Fotografija kipića (figurina) na plakatu je prerasvjetljena, detalji na njima se gube, naglašen je sjaj lažnog porculana od kojega su načinjeni, a pozadina je neutralizirana ponovno prevelikom ekspozicijom fotografije. Steyerova „slaba slika“, „poor image“ je u stanju dematerijalizacije koje dijeli s naslijeđem konceptualne umjetnosti, ali i sa suvremenim načinima semiotičke produkcije/stvaranja semiotičkih sadržaja. Prema Guatarriju u djelu Capital as the Integral of Power Formations (1996.), kapitalistički semiotički okret podražava stvaranje i diseminaciju komprimiranog i fleksibilnog paketa podataka koji se mogu integrirati u uvijek nove kombinacije i sekvence. Vanja Cuculić, dizajner plakata Fine mrtve djevojke koristi antitetički postupak u kojem ključnim označiteljem kršćanske ikonografije označava nešto radikalno profano. Prikaz Gospe na plakatu, kako je naznačeno, izazvao je žestoke reakcije kršćanskih udruga i kršćanski orijentiranih portala o tome da takvi plakati nisu prihvatljivi i da vrijeđaju osjećaje vjernika; spominjana je „kršćanofobija“.[145] Voditelj ureda katoličke udruge Vigilare govorio je i o prekršaju Zakona o suzbijanju diskriminacije, kao i nizu drugih zakona i međunarodnih dokumenata. Zahtijevao je javnu ispriku svim kršćanima i trenutačno uklanjanje plakata ili će oni protestirati pred kazalištem s kipom Blažene Djevice Marije, iako je jedna od glumica izjavila medijima da je za nju ona izvor inspiracije za propitkivanje ideje idealne bezgrešne žene. Gradonačelnik Zagreba je izdao „dekret“ o zabrani plakata, što ukazuje na činjenicu o posvemašnjoj irelevantnosti kulturne i stručne javnosti, prema Leili Topić, kustosici MSU-a Zagreb u reagiranju u dvotjedniku Zarez. Ravnatelj GDK Gavella na to je na tzv. vlastitu inicijativu uklonio sporni plakat i dao napraviti novi na kojemu je scena iz predstave: u fokusu su scene, jako osvjetljene naspram zamračene štafaže likova iz predstave, glavne glumice Nataša Janjić i Ivana Roščić u zagrljaju, u rekreaciji dijela vizualnog jezika prethodnog rješenja. O slučaju nadalje piše Leila Topić: „Čini se kako nije bezrazložno strahovati da će ono malo sponzora, producenata ili naručitelja, poučeni gradonačelnikovim dekretom, zanemariti elementarnu slobodu stvaralaštva i umjetnički integritet te puhati na hladno i prije no što je moguća kontroverzna misao i artikulirana …Preciznije, ukoliko gradonačelnikova odluka o uklanjanju plakata ne bude povučena, vrijedi pretpostaviti kako će se ostvariti san svih kulturnih šerifa o najmoćnijem alatu nadzora: autocenzuri.“[146]

S rečenim je u vezi tema života vrijednog življenja. Agamben govori o načinu na koji se proizvodi život nevrijedan ili nedostojan življenja i kako on može postojati istovremeno unutar i izvan polisa, uvodeći pojam izvanredno stanje tj. izvodeći ga iz knjige Politička teologija Carla Schmitta koji s Walterom Benjaminom debatira o „prirodi“ izvanrednog stanja. Izvanredno stanje implicira „suspenziju zakona“ koja se obično uspostavlja u ratnom periodu ili nekom drugom stanju uzbune, ekstremno rizičnom. Izvanredno stanje postaje točka balansa između zakona koji je norma ali je suspendiran i zakona koji nije norma (tj. nije nužno dio pravnog poretka) ali je na snazi. U izvanrednom se stanju pojavljuje određena „dvosmislena i nesigurna zona unutar koje realni postupci, a koji su sami po sebi izvan zakona ili protupravni, prelaze u zakonske. Zakonske norme blijede na račun same činjenice da je takve postupke i zakon postalo nemoguće razlikovati“.[147] Ovdje je potrebno uočiti povratnu spregu ili uzročno-posljedičnu vezu koju Agamben uspostavlja između izvanrednog stanja i života nevrijednog življenja.


Novi plakat za predstavu Fine mrtve djevojke u izlogu Kazališta Gavella, Zagreb, 17. siječnja 2013.


Le répertoire des choeurs de l’Armée Rouge s’élargit: ilustracija u satričkom časopisu
Charlie Hebdo poniranje ruskog zrakoplova TU-154 uspoređuje s produženim pjevanjem
glasa „a“ 64 poginula članova zbora Crvene armije u zrakoplovu (28. prosinca 2016.)


U razmatranje procesa nastanka i simboličnog i stvarnog „nestanka“ Cuculićevog plakata, možemo uvesti pojam hitchcockijanskog pogleda – na svakidašnje ljude u nesvakidašnjim situacijama pri čemu svakodnevnica postaje labirint zbivanja (a što čini besmislenim filmski narativ). Propituje odnos fikcije i zbilje i načine promatranja (u mediju filma). Ranciere[148] je analizirao pojam vrtoglavice u istoimenom Hitchcockovom film noir filmu (Vertigo, 1958.), upravo kroz hitchcockijanski pogled. Na primjer, u uvodnoj sekvenci filma zumirano je žensko oko u čijoj šarenici se pojavljuju spirale koje prelaze u napućene ženske usne, oko i punđu. Uz hitchcockijanski pogled veže se tzv. MacGuffin, „sredstvo koje strukturira događaje, ali samo nije uhvaćeno u tu strukturu, ili jednostavnije, ono motivira likove, pokreće naraciju, ali je samo po sebi beznačajno…U tom smislu MacGuffin predstavlja ono što je neuhvatljivo, ,,objekte” koji potiču razne interpretacije i daju nova značenja.” MacGuffin je pokretač radnje koji može ili ne mora biti vidljiv (pojam ili stvar koji nisu očiti, a protežni su motiv, leitmotiv, narativa ili vizualnog jezika filma), sredstvo kojim se stvara zaplet i pokreće postupke protagonista, bez narativne logike. MacGuffin može biti definiran kao novi sadržaj subverzivno stavljen u poznati kontekst pri čemu dolazi do napetosti između subjekta i objekta što je tehnika Hitchcockovih trilera od 1935. U filmu 39 stepenica (engl. The 39 Steps). Hitchcock u predavanju na sveučilištu Columbia u New Yorku 1939. objašnjava pojam MacGuffin kao sadržaj ruksaka čovjeka u vlaku, koji ga (na upit ljudi u vlaku što nosi u ruksaku) definira kao aparatus za hvatanje lavova u škotskim Highlands. Na logičku antitetičku primjedbu suputnika da u škotskim visoravnima nema lavova, čovjek s ruksakom zaključuje kako onda zasigurno nema ni McGuffina, odnosno da je McGuffin zapravo ništa. McGuffin je na primjer i malteški sokol, kipić na kojemu se temelji eponimijski naslov kao i zaplet radnje detektivskog romana The Maltese Falcon iz 1929. godine. U novomedijskom djelu suvremene umjetnosti, videu Inside the Maltese Falcon (2001.) Dalibora Martinisa zaokupljenog "komunikacijom kao materijalom djela", kodiranje se vrši implantiranjem crnih odsječaka vrpce u funkciji ništica dok nasnimljeni dijelovi imaju ulogu jedinica što za konačni učinak ima jedva primjetno treptanje kinegrama. Gledatelj je naveden da prati dodatni sadržaj na razini podsvijesti, bez voljne kontrole, što se izvrsno uklapa u rasprave što se još od 1960-ih godina neprekidno vode o mogućnostima zloporabe komunikacijske tehnologije i nemogućnostima njenog nadzora.[149] U videu To America I say... (2002.) Dalibora Martinisa aproprirana je sekvenca prvog filma o King Kongu gdje se natpisom "Radio picture" upozorava publiku u vrijeme nastanka sekvence 1933., da je riječ o filmu sa zvukom, odnosno „radijskoj slici“ (objašnjavajući novinu zvučnog filma; slova povezuju slikovni i lingvistički sustav prezentacije; govor kao institucionalizacija simbola, artikulirani jezik kao simbolička apstrakcija). Film King Kong produkcijske kuće RKO Radio pictures počinje špicom na kojoj je animacijom vizualiziran radijski toranj kako emitira poruku u Morzeovom kodu, Uz karakterističan zvuk, brzu izmjenu kratkih i dugih impulsa, na pozadini se istovremeno ispisuje naslov produkcije: "A Radio Picture". Postupkom demontaže ove sekvence, “rošadom” postojećih slova i ispisivanjem novih već postojećim kratkim i dugim zvukovima stvara se neprimjetno različita špica filma – Martinis ju je izmijenio u binarno kodiranu (zvučnim Morseovim signalom; dakle, radilo se o reciklaži prvog koda) poruku koju je Osama bin Laden poslao Americi nakon napada na Svjetski trgovački centar u New Yorku („…nitko neće biti siguran“) u kojoj vladi SAD naviješta, kako kaže Noam Chomsky „kraj odmora od povijesti“.

Istodobno s filozofijom dekonstrukcije Jacquesa Derride, nove tehnološke mogućnosti oblikovanja uz pomoć računala te s video umjetnošću, dekonstruiran je jezik filma: fikcionalnom naracijom – repeticijom, fragmentiranim dijalozima i nadrealnim jukstapozicijama. Moderna umjetnost od 1850-ih bila je militantna umjetnost čije su revolucije morale odražavati ili najavljivati političke revolucije (Courbet kao začetnik slikarstva realizma bio je angažiran politički i stvarao umjetnost u doba kada se postavlja pitanje „može li Jupiter preživjeti gromobran“). Suvremena je umjetnost u svom postmodernom periodu bila politički neutralna, uvelike depolitizirana ili barem sa „slabom“ kritičkom sviješću i angažmanima – smatra Gianni Vattimo nazivajući je „slabom misli“, možda onom ustrojenom intuitivno umjesto racionalno, tal. „pensiero debole“ – smatrajući da se odnos između modernog i postmodernog mišljenja može opisati kao odnos između jake i slabe misli.[150] Možemo uočiti progresivne (aktivističke) i reakcionarne struje u postmodernizmu, tvrdi David Reisman u tekstu Looking Forward. Activist Postmodern Art (1991.). Prema Halu Fosteru, postoji „afirmativni” (konzervativni) postmodernizam i postmodernizam „otpora”. „Postmodernizam reakcije” ili „otpora“ je izravnije društveno, politički ili edukacijsko-didaktički angažiran. Njegovi su predstavnici, primjerice Jeff Koons i Sherrie Levine, propitujući značenje pripisano lijepim umjetnostima, poput ideje romantičarskog individualizma umjetnika te formalističkog pristupa umjetnosti (bavljenja figuracijom, apstrakcijom ili nepredmetnošću) indirektno kritični prema kulturi i društvu „Postmodernizam otpora“ dekonstruira modernu, njezino bavljenje vremenom i efemernošću, predlažući nove forme i promjenu na osnovi neokonzervativne teorije, propitujući modernističku ideju progresa, ali i bivajući sam progresivnom idejom. Često je ironijski koncipiran i temeljen na parodiji, što ga reducira na pastiš, nostalgiju i površnost, prema Jamesonu; naprotiv, prema Hutcheonu, ironija i parodija kao retoričke strategije daju potrebnu kritičku distancu. Sardonični humor korišten je za rastakanje modernističkog vjerovanja u originalnost (primjenom tehničke reprodukcije, masovne produkcije i brikolaža), univerzalnost i progresivnost umjetnosti. Umjetnici prisvajaju djela drugih umjetnika i koriste se tehnikama masovne kulture, s namjerom demistifikacije umjetnosti; u potrebi da budu subverzivni, istodobno usvajaju-prigrljuju i kritiziraju vrednote američke konzumerističke kulture i društva. Autori „afirmativnog postmodernizma“, poput Hansa Haackea i Marthe Rosler, manje su ironijski, a više pozitivističko-aktivistički orijentirani u svojem radu. Foster stoga nadalje postmodernizam dijeli na ironijski i aktivistički. Ironijski postmodernisti stvaraju sjajna (estetski privlačna, primjerice kolekcionarima) umjetnička djela, izražavajući nepovjerenje u mogućnost društveno angažirane umjetnosti, dok su aktivistički postmodernisti okrenuti procesima ograničenog trajanja koje je teško skupljati (već bivaju dokumentirani); ističu potrebu društvenog angažmana umjetnosti i izlažu na nekomercijalnim izložbama, često dematerijalizirajući umjetnost ili je upotrebljavajući kao didaktičku alatku. Suvremeni umjetnici iskazuju kritiku umjetničkih institucija, ali to je “kritika iznutra“, prema Groysu u gore razmatranom tekstu Slab univerzalizam.

Prema Borisu Groysu, svakodnevni život danas, kroz dizajn ili suvremene participatorne mreže izlaže sam sebe i postalo je nemoguće razlučiti svakodnevno prikazivanje od svakodnevice. Svakodnevica je postala umjetničko djelo – nema više gole činjenice života, to jest goli se život izlaže kao artefakt. Umjetnička aktivnost je sada nešto što umjetnik dijeli s javnošću na primarnoj razini svakodnevnog iskustva. Biti umjetnikom prestalo je biti posebnom sudbinom, već je umjetničko djelovanje postalo svakodnevno – slabo djelovanje, slaba gesta. Kako bi se uspostavila i održavala ova slaba, svakodnevna razina umjetnosti, potrebno je stalno ponavljati umjetničku redukciju – odupiranja snažnim slikama i bijega od statusa quo koji funkcionira kao trajno sredstvo razmjene tih snažnih slika.[151] Mladen Stilinović u Zagrebu 1974. tako ispisuje na grundirano platno kako je “svjestan slikanja kao jedne izmišljene djelatnosti radi glorifikacije religije, novca, umijeća, zida – slika je spomenik zidu – slika je prisustvo nečega na zidu za razliku od praznog zida“.

U tekstu su dani primjeri semiotičkih obrata u umjetnosti i dizajnu u hrvatskom kontekstu, u prvom slučaju riječ je o vraćanju uklonjenog teksta, u drugom slučaju udvajanjem-repetitivnim ponavljanjem ikone dolazi do ikonografske greške. „Semiotička gerila“, termin iz književne semiotike Umberta Eca može se primijeniti na učinke novih načina distribucije i manipulacije slikama unutar produkcijskih procesa novih umjetničkih sadržaja i njihovih novih vrsta veza s jezikom.


[126]  Boris Postnikov, „Neprijateljska propaganda: Kud tone ovaj brod“, Novosti, rubrika Kultura, 12. siječnja 2019.

[127]  Prema: Hito Steyerl, „In Defense of the Poor Image“, e-flux journal #10, studeni 2009. Izvor: Pristup 23. prosinca 2018.

[128]  Boris Groys, „The Weak Universalism“, e-flux journal #15, travanj 2010. Izvor: Pristup 23. prosinca 2018. Prijevod s engl. jezika: Silva Kalčić.

[129]  Radmila Iva Janković, “Gorgonska aura”, tekst u katalogu izložbe Josipa Vanište Ukidanje retrospektive, MSU Zagreb, 2013.

[130]  Prema: Hito Steyerl, „Politics of Art: Contemporary Art and the Transition to Post-Democracy“, e-flux journal #21, prosinac 2010.

[131]  Idućeg dana na str. 14 objavljena je vezija članka proširenog naslova: “In Croatia, Banking on Tito’s Old Yacht to Steer a Rebirth”.

[132]  Marina Gržinić, „Vlasta Delimar“, To sam ja, katalog retrospektivne izložbe Vlaste Delimar, Muzej suvremene umjetnosti Zagreb, 2014., str. 177-178.

[133]  Marina Gržinić, „Aparati moći, života, rada i slobode“, Zarez, 386, godište XVI, 5. lipnja 2014. Izvor: Pristup 13. siječnja 2019.

[134]  Marina Gržinić, „Vlasta Delimar“, To sam ja, Muzej suvremene umjetnosti Zagreb, 2014., str. 180.

[135]  Ibid., str. 178.

[136]  Arthur C. Danto, „Umjetnička djela i puke realne stvari“, Probraćaj svakidašnjeg (filozogfija umjetnosti), KruZak, Zagreb,1 1997., str. 8. Na engl. izvorniku iz 1981. godine Works of Art and Mere Real Things. Na str. 9 Danto govori o Wittgensteinovoj definiciji umjetnosti kao one nepodložne definiciji, odnosno definiciju je moguće izmudriti pomoću institucionalnih faktora.

[137]  Jasmina Merz, „Estetika u krizi ili kriza u estetici“, Kriza, umjetnost, akcija, Gradska galerija i Tehnički fakultet Univerzitet u Bihaću, 2016., str. 111. Zbornik tekstova koji rekontekstualiziraju značenja i razloga koje su doveli do socijalnih nemira i/ili građanskih protesta u BiH 2014. godine.

[138]  Prema: Richard Brody, Everything Is Cinema: The Working Life of Jean-Luc Godard, Metropolitan Books, New York, 2008.

[139]  U okviru izložbe u Galeriji Praktika u organizaciji udruge Mavena; kustos izložbe bio je Tonči Krančević Batalić.

[140]  Alain Badiou, D’un désastre obscure sur la fin de la vérité d’état, Editions de l’Aube, Pariz, 1998.

[141]  Vanja Cuculić, inače stalni suradnik Gavelle, nagrađivan upravo zbog svojih plakata. Uvršten je i na listu 115 najznačajnijih suvremenih hrvatskih umjetnika koju je objavio internetski portal engleskog vodiča Time Out Croatia.

[142]  Tal. Kitsch: antologia del cattivo gusto, Gabriele Mazzotta Editore, Milano, 1968.

[143]  Juka Gronow, Sociologija ukusa, Jesenski i Turk, Hrvatsko sociološko društvo, Zagreb, 2000., str. 68-69.

[144]  Prema: „Novi na popisu uvrijeđenih: Plakat za „Fine mrtve djevojke“ uvrijedio i – Islamsku zajednicu“, HINA, 18. siječnja 2013. u prenošenju Novog lista. Izvor:

[145]  Ove primjere koristi u svom istraživačkom radu Ivana Bošnjak.

[146]  Leila Topić, „Bandićev dekret protiv ugleda struke” u okvirurubrike reagiranja “Naši i njihovi, Zarez, br. 352, godište XV, 15. veljače 2013. Izvor: Pristup 23. prosinca 2018.

[147]  Giorgio Agamben, State of Exception, The University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 2005., str. 29. Tal. izvornik Stato di eccezione objavljen je 2003.

[148]  Ibid., str. 25 i 26.

[149]  Još sredinom 1960-ih godina američka obavještajna zajednica interesirala se je za pokuse s vrlo kratkim (nekoliko desetinki sekunde) sugestivnim porukama, emitiranim preko TV medija. Gledatelji su zamoljeni da se jave ukoliko bi primijetili išta neobično tijekom gledanja uobičajenih programskih brojeva. Pokusi su polučili iznenađujuće efekte tako da su se za njih zainteresirale i reklamne tvrtke. Projekt je, navodno, napušten zbog škodljivog utjecaja na ljudsku psihu.

[150]  Pod utjecajem i u imaginarnom “razgovoru” s Nietzscheom i njegovim “otkrićem laži” vrednota i metafizičkih sustava društva svoga vremena, u djelu Slaba misao, tal. Il pensiero debole, 1983.

[151]  Boris Groys, „The Weak Universalism“, e-flux journal #15, travanj 2010.



Agamben, Giorgio, State of Exception, The University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 2005.

Brody, Richard, Everything Is Cinema: The Working Life of Jean-Luc Godard, Metropolitan Books, New York, 2008.

Dorfles, Gillo, Kitsch: antologia del cattivo gusto, Gabriele Mazzotta Editore, Milano, 1968.

Gronow, Juka, Sociologija ukusa, Jesenski i Turk, Hrvatsko sociološko društvo, Zagreb, 2000.

Vattimo Gianni, Il pensiero debole, Feltrinelli, Milano, 1983.


Članci i tekstovi u zbornicima:

Christov-Bakargiev, Carolyn,„On the Destruction of ArtOr Conflict and Art, or Trauma and the Art of Healing”, 100 Notes –. 100 Thoughts, No. 040, dOCUMENTA (13), Hatje Cantz, Ostfildern, 2011.

Groys, Boris, The Weak Universalism, e-flux journal #15, travanj 2010.

Hošić, Irfan i Husak, Amir,ur., Kriza, umjetnost, akcija Gradska galerija i Tehnički fakultet Univerzitet u Bihaću, Bihać, 2016.

Munivrana, Martina,ur., To sam ja, Muzej suvremene umjetnosti Zagreb, Zagreb, 2014.

Steyerl, Hito, In Defense of the Poor Image, e-flux journal #10, studeni 2009.

Topić, Leila, Bandićev dekret protiv ugleda struke u okviru reagiranja “Naši i njihovi”, Zarez, br. 352, godište XV, 15. veljače 2013.


Referential Symbolism and Semiotic Aspect of works of Art and Design




Destination: Unnamed, the exhibition in the billboard medium by Nadija Mustapić and Toni Meštrović (2017), is an example of art in public space (photographs in a standard advertising space in the format of a billboard poster), whereas the poster for the theatre play Fine Dead Girls, directed by Dalibor Matanić (Gavella, Zagreb, 2013), is the work of design in public space (of both the city and the mass media, in the format of a theatre poster) in the context of national visual arts of today. With these examples I have connected the following subjects: 1. Agamben’s dispositive, derived from the juxtaposition or the interpenetration of relations of power (for example, through governantism) and relations of knowledge (discursive and non-discursive ones), which perceives art practices as formations of the relations of power. 2. Compression of time impoverishes, depletes cultural signs, transforming them into “zero signs” or “weak signs,” according to Agamben. Boris Groys notes that such “weak” signs triumph over the strong and “powerful” signs of our time, those of authority, tradition, power, but also over the powerful ones of rebellion, passion, heroism. 3. “Poor image,” in the sense this term is used by Hito Steyerl (in her text „In Defence of the Poor Image,“ 2009) when referring to the mass-distributed and reproduced image in the digital media network.


Key words: public art, dispositif/dispositive, empathic design, activist art, visual communication, epistemology of media.




 8(15)#24 2019

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Primljeno: 23.11.2018.



Željka Bagarić i Antonija Mandić

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Istina, mediji i žilet-žica: migranti u
hrvatskom medijskom krajoliku

Puni tekst: pdf (623 KB), Hrvatski, Str. 2423 - 2443





Rad istražuje načine medijske pokrivenosti i prezentiranja dva specifična incidenta u kojima su bili uključeni migranti i tražitelji azila na tzv. balkanskoj ruti. Prezentirani su rezultati provedene pilot analize sadržaja s ciljem doprinosa postojećoj literaturi o imigracijskom obuhvatu pružatelja medijskih sadržaja u hrvatskom te regionalnom medijskom krajoliku.


Ključne riječi: migranti, balkanska ruta, hrvatski news mediji, pilot analiza sadržaja, okviri.



Problemski okvir

Masovni mediji posreduju svojoj publici informacije o svijetu, nameću teme i uokviruju diskurse. Medijski je svijet postao zaseban svijet s vlastitim kodovima, slikama, jezikom i istinom, koji proizvodi i prodaje vlastitu stvarnost. Informacija više nije slobodna i kritička; ona prenosi jednu ideju i jednu istinu[152]. U današnjoj eri postistine, gubljenje razlike između empirijskih činjenica i alternativnih činjenica[153], prisiljava nas na svakodnevno propitivanje vjerodostojnosti različitih medijskih sadržaja kojima smo preplavljeni, kao i glasova koji nam progovaraju kroz iste.

Europska unija se tijekom 2015. i 2016. suočila s dosad nezabilježenim valom izbjeglica i migranata - nazvanim europska migracijska kriza - no svima koji dolaze u Europu nije potrebna međunarodna zaštita. Tisuće su poginule u moru, a procjenjuje[154] se da je 90% izbjeglica i migranata platilo organiziranim kriminalcima i krijumčarima ljudi da ih prebace preko granice. Zbog takvog priljeva migranata ponovno je privremeno uspostavljen nadzor unutarnjih granica između zemalja schengenskog prostora[155]. Republika Hrvatska se kao tranzitna zemlja nalazi na tzv. balkanskoj ruti i jedina je zemlja članica Europske unije koja na svojoj granici - ujedno i vanjskoj granici Europske unije - nije podigla fizičke prepreke poput betonskih ograda ili žilet-žica. Opća javnost ima i dalje većinom ograničena saznanja i rijetke neposredne doticaje s migrantima / tražiteljima azila, stoga nije moguće ignorirati ulogu i utjecaj masovnih medija, news media, te posebice društvenih mreža, na formiranje stavova pojedinaca prema migrantima.

Politička europska scena svjesna je značaja i uloge medijske pokrivenosti migracija i migranata u europskim društvima na percepciju migracija i migranata u javnoj sferi. Kroz različite fondove i etnografske istraživačke projekte analiziraju se i vrednuju sadržaji, diskursi te stavovi medijskih profesionalaca. Podudarni rezultati navedenih istraživanja ukazuju na prevladavajuće negativno i stereotipno portretiranje migranata; uz migrante se dominantno vežu negativne teme, dok su građani trećih zemalja po definiciji podzastupljeni u vijestima i agendama vijesti[156]. Ti opći rezultati mogu varirati ovisno o specifičnom nacionalnom kontekstu, vrstama medija ili o grupama migranata. A pitanja koja se pri tom podižu vezuju se uz odabir medijskih tema i okvira, oblika prezentacije vijesti, izvora koji se koriste i citiraju, specifične retorike i kategorizacije pojedinih migrantskih grupacija te elemenata diskursa u medijskim sadržajima[157].

Pregledom akademske literature o medijskoj pokrivenosti migracijske tematike tzv. „stare migracije“ (migracije do 2015. godine) u Australiji i Kanadi, (Anderson[158], 2014: Esses, Medianu,2013; Rowe, O'Brien, 2013; Bradimore, Bauder, 2012; Pedersen, Watt, Hansen, 2006), mogu se između ostaloga identificirati četiri glavna okvira[159] medijskog diskursa unutar kojih se tražitelji azila prezentiraju kao: sigurnosna ugroza; lažni izbjeglice; nezakoniti migranti te zdravstvena prijetnja zajednici. Pokazalo se kako medijske kampanje, ovisno o lokalnom kontekstu, većinom podupiru agresivnu i izrazito neprijateljsku klimu prema migrantima. U tom kontekstu i glasovi koji su zastupljeni slijede „hijerarhiju vjerodostojnosti“[160], obuhvaćajući dužnosnike, druge predstavnike vlasti te predstavnike javnih i popratnih stručnih službi.

U navedenim se okvirima kreću i rezultati UNHCR-ove komparativne tekstualne analize medijske pokrivenosti tematike u vezi izbjeglica i migracijske krize učinjenoj na korpusu od 2000 članaka, objavljenih u razdoblju od siječnja 2014. godine do travnja 2015. godine, u pet europskih zemalja (Italiji, Španjolskoj, Velikoj Britaniji, Švedskoj i Njemačkoj)[161] koji iako variraju u pretežnosti tema rizika[162], većinom negativno portretiraju tražitelje azila. Između ostaloga, pokazalo se kako dominantni termini koji se koriste u medijima imaju važan učinak na migracijski diskurs pojedine zemlje te jačaju razinu anksioznosti prisutnu u javnosti vezanu uz imigracijska pitanja. Primjerice, u Njemačkoj i Švedskoj prevladava termin „izbjeglica“ i „tražitelj azila“; tisak u Italiji i Velikoj Britaniji preferira riječ „migrant“, dok je u Španjolskoj dominantan u uporabi termin „imigrant“.

U red navedenih istraživanja ubrajamo i komparativnu tekstualnu analizu prezentiranja europskih imigracijskih tema između međunarodnih globalnih novinskih agencija Agence France Presse (AFP), The Associated Press (AP) i Reutersa, kao predstavnica mainstream novinarstva, te agencije Inter Press Service (IPS), kao predstavnice alternativnog novinarstva. Studija je obuhvatila ukupno 56 priloga/priča koje su prenijele agencije u razdoblju od veljače do kolovoza 2011. godine. Dobiveni rezultati su pokazali značajnu razliku između mainstream i alternativnih medija u odnosu na dužinu, izvore i okvire priča i tema, pri čemu produkciju alternativne agencije IPS u analiziranom razdoblju karakterizira značajno manji broj članaka, značajno veći prosječni broj riječi u tekstovima, te kritički i reflektivno orijentiran ton i stav. Vrijednosna orijentacija medijske pokrivenosti imigracija u člancima IPS-a jedina stavlja težište na integraciju, za razliku od okvira pretežito negativnih vrijednosti, sukoba i pojednostavljivanja u odnosu na migracijske teme u tekstovima analiziranih mainstream agencija[163].

Pregledom dostupne literature pronalazi se jedino istraživanje o načinu izvještavanja nekih hrvatskih medija o imigrantima u kontekstu straha i prijetnje od terorizma, provedeno u razdoblju od 1. srpnja do 31. kolovoza 2015. godine (Razum, 2015). Autorica na temelju pretraživanja tekstova pomoću zadanih ključnih riječi pozitivnog, odnosno, negativnog naboja u prilozima iz Večernjeg i Jutarnjeg lista pronalazi „terorizam“ i „napad“kao najčešće korištene negativne ključne riječi, dok su najčešće pronađene pozitivne ključne riječi bile „pomoć“ i „obitelj“. Zanimljivo je pri tom kako se riječ „empatija“ niti jednom ne pojavljuje u uzorku od ukupno 236 analiziranih priloga. Temeljem navedenoga, zaključuje se kako su imigranti u najvećem broju slučajeva i negativnim riječima; najčešće ih se vezuje uz terorizam te na taj način diskriminira i u javnosti potiče strah od terorizma.

Clare i Abdelhady (2017) su analizirali način portretiranja djece migrantskog porijekla u člancima vodećih francuskih tiskovina (Le Monde, L'Humanité i Le Figaro) objavljenih u razdoblju od 2003. do 2013. godine. Analiza je pokazala kako su teme vezane uz imigraciju i imigrante rijetko prikazivani na objektivan i neutralan način. Autori nalaze zabrinjavajućim to što se potomke afričkih imigranta, koji su legitimni francuski građani, (rođeni i odrasli u Francuskoj i imaju francusko državljanstvo) i dalje etiketira isključivo kao djecu imigranata te im se redovito pridaju negativne konotacije iz spektra društvenih problema i nezaposlenosti. Tragični događaji[164] terorističkog napada na uredništvo satiričnog časopisa Charlie Hebdo kojeg su u ime Al-Qua'ide izveli „djeca afričkih imigranata“, učvrstili su okvir i diskurs u pravcu ugroze nacionalne sigurnosti i svih vrijednosti slobodnog društva.

Međutim, ponekad mediji mogu imati i pozitivne utjecaje na javne stavove i politiku. Fotografija utopljenog trogodišnjeg sirijskog dječaka Aylana Kurdija[165] koji leži licem prema dolje na mokrom pijesku turske obale dominirale su naslovnicama tradicionalnih i digitalnih medija, te izazvale eksploziju interakcije na društvenim mrežama. Taj je nesretni događaj u kojem je život izgubilo još jedanaest sirijskih izbjeglica, uključujući majku i brata malenog Aylana, svojom viralnošću i ogromnom mobilizacijom korisnika Twittera i drugih društvenih mreža doveo, barem privremeno, do pomaka paradigme u prezentiranju medijske slike migranata i nezakonitih migracija[166]. Podaci iz istraživanja koje su krajem 2015. godine proveli istraživači sa University of Sheffield's Visual Social Media Lab[167] jasno su pokazali da ova fotografija (image) nije samo mobilizirala globalnu publiku, nego je trenutno transformirala debatu o migracijskim temama između korisnika društvenih mreža, jer, prema njima, riječ „izbjeglica“ nosi u sebi odgovornost za međunarodnu zaštitu, koja nije imanentna riječi „migrant“[168].

Obuhvatnija komparativna istraživanja medijske prezentacije tema vezanih uz migracijsku krizu novijeg datuma nisu zabilježena. Međutim, pojedini se mediji bave analizom obilježja portretiranja migranata u pojedinim zemljama Europske unije poznatih po desničarskoj striktnoj politici prema migrantima, poput Mađarske (The Guardian) ili Austrije. U mađarskom javnom prostoru se bilježi sveprisutna retorika zastrašivanja i ksenofobije, utemeljena na lažnim vijestima i agresivnoj anti-migrantskoj vizualizaciji na kojoj se bazirala izborna kampanja stranke Fidesz[169]. Diskriminacijska, desničarska retorika prema nezakonitim migrantima kao „jedva obrazovanim“ osobama s „lošom perspektivom“ i za koje „život u slobodnom društvu predstavlja ozbiljne ako ne i nepremostive probleme“ pronalazi se u austrijskim službenim dokumentima (Financial Times[170]).

Na osnovu problemskog okvira koji se razabire iz navedenog pregleda literature postavljena su glavna istraživačka pitanja ovog rada:

1. Kako su portretirani migranti u hrvatskom medijskom prostoru?

2. Razlikuju li se najčitaniji hrvatski news portali u prezentaciji migranata u odnosu na varijable: Opći podaci; Izvori; Teme; Vrijednosna orijentacija; Okviri; Stil i ton?

3. Razlikuju li se mainstream i alternativni mediji u prikazu i prezentaciji odabranih incidenata s migrantima?



Iako su provedene određene studije o medijskom portretiranju migranata, na temelju prethodno prikazanog pregleda literature nije zabilježeno istraživanje o načinu medijske prezentacije migranata, a i drugih aktera u konkretnim događajima stradavanja djece na nekoj od etapa migrantskih ruta. To je ovom istraživanju pružilo mogućnost doprinosa postojećoj literaturi o medijskoj prezentaciji migranata.

U tom kontekstu, provedeno je orijentacijsko istraživanje u čijem je fokusu pilot analiza online tekstova na uzorku od ukupno 112 online članaka objavljenih u 11 news portala. Odabir medija (Tablica 1) obuhvatio je 5 najčitanijih hrvatskih news portala (rangiranih prema izvješću agencije Reuters za 2017. g, aktualnom u vrijeme provedbe analize)[171]; 2 vodeća portala iz svake od susjednih zemalja u blizini čijih granica se dogodio analizirani incident (RS i BiH), te 2 alternativna pružatelja medijskog sadržaja.[172]



Ovdje valja istaknuti kako se postupak selekcije portala za analizu pokazao kao jedno od ograničenja u provedbi ovog istraživanja. Naime, kod pojedinih portala susjednih zemalja, posebice u slučaju portala u Bosni i Hercegovini, pokazalo se iznimno teškim doći do podataka relevantnih za kvalifikaciju medija, gdje najčešće impresum ne postoji kao izvor podataka, odnosno, ne sadrži identifikacijske podatke upotrebljive za svrhu ovog rada. Zbog manjka podataka, kao i na temelju dubljeg uvida u aktualnu, izuzetno „kompleksno i komplicirano stanje medijske scene u Bosni i Hercegovini…koje se reflektira na netransparentnost, vjerodostojnost, održivost i autonomiju medija“[173] a da bi se otklonile moguće neželjene pogrješke, autorice nisu mogle uključiti niti jedan medij iz Bosne i Hercegovine koji bi se sa sigurnošću mogao prihvatiti kao alternativan.

Jedinicu analize čine svi članci odabranih internetskih portala koji su obuhvatili dva tragična incidenta stradavanja djece migranata na tzv. balkanskoj ruti. Prvi incident se odnosi na pogibiju šestogodišnje afganistanske djevojčice Madine Hossaini (dana 22. 11. 2017.) u naletu vlaka kod Šida, Republika Srbija, u blizini granične crte s Republikom Hrvatskom. Drugi se incident (dana 30. 05. 2018.) odnosi na prvi zabilježeni slučaj uporabe vatrenog oružja od strane hrvatske granične policije u postupanju pri probijanju policijske blokade i pokušaju bijega krijumčara ljudi, kojom prilikom je kod mjesta Donji Srb, Republika Hrvatska, u blizini granice s Bosnom i Hercegovinom, došlo do ranjavanja dvoje dvanaestogodišnje djece (koji su se s ostalih 27 krijumčarenih migranata nalazili u kombiju).

Za prikupljanje uzorka on line tekstova, pretraživanje je primarno izvršeno kroz arhive objavljenih tekstova na website-ovima analiziranih portala. Kriterij za pretraživanje je bio obuhvatiti sve objavljene tekstove koji se odnose na pogibiju djevojčice Madine kao i sve tekstove u vezi stradavanja djece u pokušaju bijega krijumčara ljudima. No kako se na ovaj način nije prikupio puni uzorak, dodatno je korišten je Google pretraživač, na osnovu ključnih riječi „Madina“, „afganistanska djevojčica“, „vlak“, „voz“, „migranti“, „hrvatska granična policija“, „Šid“, „granica“, odnosno, „krijumčari ljudi“, „migranti“ „kombi“, „policijska blokada“, „bijeg“, „pucanje“, „djeca“ „ozljede glave“. Članci koji su sadržavali zadane ključne riječi no nisu pokrivali odabrane incidente, isključeni su iz konačnog uzorka. Ovisno o temi incidenta, rezultati analize su grupirani u dvije cjeline - pogibija Madine (MAD) i propucavanje kombija (KOM).

Vremenski okvir istraživanja je obuhvatio razdoblje objavljivanja online članaka o odabranim incidentima, od neposrednog vremena događanja, do članaka koji su naknadno objavljivani u svrhu obuhvaćanja novih činjenica, poput primjerice razvoja događaja u vezi smještaja obitelji poginule djevojčice u prihvatni centar; intenzivnog angažmana nevladinih udruga u vezi istoga i drugo.

Pilot analiza je obuhvatila ukupno 102 online članka, od čega 70 (70,10%) članaka tekstova cjeline (MAD) je od 21.11. 2017.g. do 17. 06. 2018.g. i 32 (29,9%) teksta za cjelinu (KOM) u vremenu od 31.05.-3.06.2018.g. (Tablica 2).



Navedeni događaji su odabrani zbog velikog medijskog odjeka u Hrvatskoj, a i šire. Kako su se zbili u neposrednoj blizine granice sa Srbijom (pogibija Madine), odnosno s Bosnom i Hercegovinom (propucavanje kombija s krijumčarenim migrantima), analizirani su i pripadajući tekstovi objavljeni u dva vodeća portala navedenih susjednih zemalja. Iako su ovi tragični događaji imali (i još imaju) vrlo veliki odjek i na društvenim mrežama, analiza digitalne komunikacija nije uključena u ovaj rad. Potrebno je naglasiti kako rezultati objavljeni u ovom radu predstavljaju inicijalne rezultate provedenog orijentacijskog istraživanja temeljem postavljenih istraživačkih pitanja.

Analiza sadržaja se definira kao „istraživačka metoda koja se koristi za izvođenje ponovljivih i valjanih zaključaka iz teksta (ili bilo kojeg drugog smislenog materijala) o kontekstu unutar kojeg je korišten“ (Krippendorff, 2004:18), odnosno, kao „istraživačka metoda koja za stvaranje valjanih zaključaka iz teksta koristi skup procedura“ (Weber, 1990: 9). Da bi se provela analiza sadržaja, prema Brymanu (2008:274) „sadržaj se kvantificira u smislu unaprijed zadanih kategorija na sustavan i ponovljiv način“.

U istraživanju je korištena jednostavna pilot analiza sadržaja, kako bi se izvršilo kodiranje sadržaja i definirale kategorije koje su uključene u matricu.

Kategorije upotrijebljene u radu korespondiraju s kategorijama iz do sada provedenih istraživanja medijske pokrivenosti tema povezanih s migrantima, ali i s predmetom ovog istraživanja. U tom smislu su primijenjene dvije vršne manifesne kategorije (Opći podaci i Izvori) kojima se opisuje oprema članaka te prezentiraju glasovi koji se čuju u analiziranim portalima u različitom medijskom prostoru – hrvatskom ali i regionalnom. Četiri vršne latentne kategorije (Teme; Vrijednosna orijentacija; Okviri; Stil i ton) služe za identificiranje razlike između news portala u načinu prezentiranja teme čitateljima. Pripadajuće potkategorije manifesnih (ukupno 16) i latentnih kategorija su izlučene tijekom višekratnog čitanja članaka, procesa kodiranja i testiranja kodiranja, te su zaključno od početnih 49 latentnih potkategorija definirane ukupno 34.

Prema Weberu, test pouzdanosti ili „reproduktivnosti“ se odnosi na ideju da različiti ljudi koristeći istu matricu mogu na isti način kodirati isti tekst (1990:17). U tu svrhu primijenjena je Holstijeva formula[174] te izvršeno testiranje pouzdanosti s dva nezavisna suca na 20 slučajno odabranih članaka iz uzorka. Prosječni rezultat testa za sve primijenjene kategorije iznosi 0,87. Kodni list je priložen u Dodatku 1.


Rezultati i diskusija

Već na početku analize se pretpostavka kako će navedeni tragični događaji u kontekstu kompleksne problematike koju migracijska kriza predstavlja i za treće zemlje u našem okruženju biti od (barem podjednakog) medijskog interesa, pokazala netočnom. Naime, iz Tablice 2 je također vidljivo kako su jedino portali i obradili, doduše šturo, oba incidenta. Izostanak medijskog interesa možda možemo donekle objasniti geografskim obilježjima – pa otuda u bosansko-hercegovačkom medijskom prostoru nije popraćen događaj koji se dogodio na teritoriju ili u blizini granične crte između Hrvatske i Srbije i obratno, ali tada se postavlja pitanje, zašto to ne vrijedi za već spomenute portale i Imajući u vidu metodološku fleksibilnost kvalitativnih istraživanja, koju u cilju produbljivanja ili prikupljanja novih iskustava ili spoznaja omogućuju prilagodbu i redefiniranje istraživačke strategije i polaznih istraživačkih pitanja u tijeku odvijanja istraživanja (Halmi, 2008; Verčić, Ćorić, Vokić, 2011), na osnovu novo deriviranih činjenica autorice su daljnjom pilot analizom obuhvatile 102 online članka pet hrvatskih najčitanijih portala te navedena dva portala susjednih zemalja. Svjesne u svakom trenutku metodičkog ograničenja, kao i uostalom, opasnosti od pretjeranog pojednostavljivanja ove složene problematike, autorice smjeraju stvoriti platformu za buduća relevantna, kompleksna kombinirana istraživanja.


Tablica 3. Kategorije i potkategorije manifesne dimenzije (KOM + MAD)


Pogledom na frekvencije pobrojane u Tablici 3 razvidno je kako online tekstovi cjeline MAD zauzimaju gotovo trostruko više medijskog prostora u odnosu na broj znakova u cjelini KOM; koriste se raznovrsniji izvori, pri čemu prednjače glasovi NGO-a, zagovaratelja, predstavnika državnih službi – policije i visokih državnih dužnosnika. Nadalje, glasovi migranata su zastupljeni u podjednakom omjeru kao i službeni izvori, što je podudarno i s predominantnom formom medijske objave, intervjuima i izjavama. Teški emotivni naboj i šok prisutan u javnosti zbog ovog tragičnog događaja mogu poslužiti kao objašnjenje produljenog interesa i produkcije medijskih sadržaja pojedinih analizirani hrvatskih portala. Gotovo identične fotografije koje se uvijek iznova koriste u člancima, velika stopa prenošenja sadržaja drugih medijskih pružatelja, govori u prilog tezi nametanja agende i zapravo, recikliranja ove ljudske tragedije. S druge strane, analizom zabilježenih frekvencija kod manifesnih potkategorija cjeline KOM, uočavaju se prevladavajući glasovi službenih izvora, službenih osoba te stručnjaka u odnosu na glasove interesnih skupina i naročito zagovaratelja, odnosno, migranata. Činjenica kako se radi o tekstovima koji su obuhvatili do tada nezabilježenu uporabu sredstava prisile i postupanja pripadnika hrvatske granične policije koje je rezultiralo ranjavanjem djece migranata može rasvijetliti zabilježene pojavnosti u manifesnoj dimenziji.

Za razliku od prezentacije kategorija Opći podaci i Izvori iz podataka navedenog pregleda literature, zanimljivo je ustanoviti kako u pogledu ovih incidenata u medijskom prostoru na balkanskoj ruti prevladavaju fotografije koje prikazuju migrante kao žrtve, na udaru životnih, sudbinskih i vremenskih neprilika, ali i na milost i nemilost dehumanizirajućeg policijskog stroja u službi brutalne europske politike zatvorenih granica i namotaja žilet žice. U tom svjetlu, dominantna zastupljenost migranata, zagovaratelja i interesnih skupina sklonih migrantskoj verziji istine u potpunosti odudara od zabilježenih trendova u europskom ali i svjetskom medijskom prostoru.


Tablica 4. Latentna vršna kategorija i potkategorije - Teme (KOM + MAD)


Uvidom u pobrojane frekvencije u Tablici 4 očitavamo kako se u skladu sa sadržajem incidenta ističu i latentne potkategorije. Zanimljivo je uočiti kako se u incidentu s kombijem u većini analiziranih medija može sramežljivo izlučiti tema o temeljenim pravima (ljudskim pravima i temeljnim slobodama) policajaca. S druge strane, u latentnom tematskom sklopu incidenta pogibije djevojčice dominantni tematski blok se odnosi na nezakonito postupanje policije te u sličnom omjeru i temeljna prava migranata i humanitarnost. Zanimljivo je kako se u tekstovima snažno sugerira na moguća rješenja u smislu neopozivog popuštanja politike sprječavanja ilegalnih migracija. U odnosu na teme koje se vežu uz migrante u analiziranim medijskim sadržajima iz referentnog okvira literature, ponovo uočavamo potpuno suprotni predznak.


Tablica 5. Latentna vršna kategorija i potkategorije:

Vrijednosna orijentacija i Stil i ton (KOM + MAD)


Na temelju podataka iz Tablice 5 u slučaju stila i vrijednosnih orijentacija koje deriviramo analizom sadržaja promatranih tekstova, vezano za cjelinu KOM, možemo zaključiti kako su one u okvirima prosjeka i očekivanja, gdje profesionalan, informativan i neutralan stil prevladavaju u sadržaju članaka. Potpuno suprotan naboj bilježimo u tekstovima svih analiziranih portala vezano uz Madina incident. Maksimalno izraženih negativnih vrijednosti i dominantnog tona diskursa koji, reklo bi se, agresivno i bezrezervno optužuje ponajprije policijske službenike (najčešće hrvatske granične policije) a zatim i europske institucije za nezakonito, nehumano i diskriminatorno postupanje i ponašanje, odnosno, nametanje politike pogubne po imigrante,.


Tablica 6. Neki naslovi članaka analiziranih portala (MED + KOM)

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JE LI HRVATSKA POLICIJA KRIVA ZA SMRT DJEVOJČICE MADINE ? Britanski Guardian: ‘Tretirali su je kao životinju, kao psa’

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"Najmračniji kutak europskog ponašanja prema migrantima"

TAJNI POLICIJSKI RAT PROTIV MALE MRTVE MADINE Prvo su Afganistanku (6) otjerali prema Srbiji i pala je pod vlak. Sad su njezinu obitelj lišili slobode

NOVE OPTUŽBE IZ SRBIJE: ‘Hrvatska svakodnevno krši bilateralne sporazume i europske propise, a policajci se ponašaju poput krijumčara ljudi’

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Ispovijest migranata u koje je pucala hrvatska policija: „Tražili smo hitnu, a oni su nas tukli“

Božinović brani policajce koji su upucali djecu u lice: "Postupili su opravdano"

Noćna drama u Lici: 'Policajci su pucnjavom branili živote...'

JE LI POLICIJA SMJELA PUCATI? Pucali su ciljano u vozača i gume, a evo što zakon kaže jesu li postupili ispravno


Iako je kroz prizmu ljudskog lica možda moguće shvatiti i identificirati se s tugom i očajem obitelji, začuđuje doista činjenica da se krimen za tragediju olako svaljuje na službenike koji izvršavaju svoje legitimne zadaće. Pri tome nema glasova koji bi pitali zašto je u toj i takvoj situaciji i noći šestogodišnje dijete, koje stjecaj okolnosti ipak nije odvojio od majke i ostalih članova obitelji, samo i bez nadzora hodalo po prometnoj pruzi. Kako to možemo vidjeti u Tablici 6 tendencioznost i senzacionalizam ovih tekstova se očitava već i u naslovima članaka, kao i tema i okvira kojima se agresivno žele urezati u svijest čitatelja.


Tablica 7.


Autori koriste okvire u argumentaciji konstrukcije društvene stvarnosti koju istovremeno žele nametnuti – uokviriti - kao vrijednosne sudove u procesu našeg promišljanje o društvu ili o nama samima. U Tablici 7 razvidne su teme – okviri koje smo identificirali pomoću potkategorija U provedenoj pilot analizi, postupkom kodiranja i kategorizacije sadržaja svih online analiziranih tekstova izlučena je latentna dimenzija, Okviri (Frames), koju smo identificirali pomoću potkategorija navedenih u Tablici 7, i to: opasno je biti nezakoniti migrant; migranti su žrtve; odgovornost, ljudsko lice i sukobi/konflikt. Ako se podsjetimo rezultata prethodno navedenih studija o dominantnim temama koje su usvojile agencije prilikom pokrivanja imigracijskih tema: imigranti su opća prijetnja , imigranti su kriminalci, imigranti su teret za ekonomiju; imigranti su prijetnja za kulturu zemlje destinacije, uočavamo bitnu razliku. Zašto se okviri oprečno razlikuju, ovoga trenutka ne možemo odgovoriti. No to bez daljnjeg otvara put za nova istraživanjima u ovom području. Nadalje, kako bismo vizualno naglasili pronađenu razliku u okvirima koji stoje iza priča najčitanijih hrvatskih portala ovisno o incidentu kojeg pokrivaju, kreirali smo grafove 1 i 2, iz kojih je razvidno da u obradi incidenta s kombijem okviri iza priča donekle variraju ovisno o portalu. Međutim, iz grafa 2 je razvidno u kojoj su mjeri okviri hrvatskih najčitanijih portala bili podudarni prilikom izvješćivanja u vezi pogibije migrantske djevojčice.


Graf 1. Latentna dimenzija Okviri (KOM)


Graf 2. Latentna dimenzija Okviri (MAD)



Svrha ovog rada je bila identificirati razlike u prezentaciji migranata i migracijskih tema, u hrvatskom medijskom krajoliku na temelju dva tragična događaja u kojima je došlo do stradavanja djece migranata na tzv. balkanskoj ruti. U provedenom istraživanju korištena je jednostavna pilot analiza sadržaja, kako bi se izvršilo kodiranje sadržaja i definirale kategorije koje su uključene u matricu. Rezultati objavljeni u ovom radu predstavljaju inicijalne rezultate provedenog orijentacijskog istraživanja na temelju preliminarnih istraživačkih pitanja. Na osnovu svega navedenoga, a imajući u vidu činjenicu kako do sada nije zabilježeno istraživanje o medijskoj prezentaciji migranata na balkanskoj ruti, autoricama se otvara mogućnost doprinosa postojećoj literaturi o medijskoj prezentaciji migranata.

Analiza je ukazala na neke iznenađujuće i zanimljive rezultate vezane uz portretiranje migranata u hrvatskom medijskom prostoru. Naime, za razliku od europskog, odnosno, svjetskog prevladavajuće stereotipnog okvira medijskog diskursa pretežito negativnih vrijednosti i sukoba unutar kojih se tražitelji azila prezentiraju kao: sigurnosna ugroza; lažni izbjeglice; nezakoniti migranti te zdravstvena prijetnja zajednici, u dva odbrana događaja, najčitaniji hrvatski portali prikazuju migrante kao žrtve na udaru životnih, sudbinskih i vremenskih neprilika, ali i na milosti i nemilosti brutalne europske politike zatvorenih granica i namotaja žilet žice. Nadalje, glasovi migranata su zastupljeni u podjednakom omjeru kao i službeni izvori. Ovisno o događaju koji pokrivaju članci najčitanijih hrvatskih news portala razlikuju se u odnosu na varijable: izvori; teme; vrijednosna orijentacija; okviri; stil i ton u povodu. Pri tome najviše iznenađuju izlučeni dominantni okviri: opasno je biti nezakoniti migrant; migranti su žrtve; odgovornost, ljudsko lice i sukobi/konflikt, što predstavlja potpunu suprotnost obilježjima medijske prezentacije koja proizlazi iz navedenog referentnog i problemskog okvira rada.

Nalazimo zabrinjavajućim uokvirivanje slike dehumanizirajućeg policijskog stroja u službi brutalne europske politike. Još je veće iznenađenje ustanoviti visinu podudarnosti u prikazu maksimalno izraženih negativnih vrijednosti i dominantnog tona koji gotovo agresivno i bezrezervno optužuje ponajprije policijske službenike (najčešće hrvatske granične policije), a zatim i europske institucije, za nezakonito, nehumano i diskriminatorno postupanje i ponašanje, odnosno, nametanje politike pogubne po imigrante. U svoj toj silnoj medijskoj borbi za ljudska prava i temeljne slobode migranata, zaboravlja se na važnu činjenicu – a to je da se zahtjev za očuvanje i suzbijanje kršenja ljudskih prava proteže i na hrvatske granične policajce. A sve dok predstavnici hrvatskih medija provode „jedan dan s migrantima“, ali ne i „jedan dan s hrvatskom graničnom policijom“, objektivnost, kritična misao, istina ali i vladavina ljudskih prava i ostalih moralnih dimenzija, neće stanovati u hrvatskom medijskom i egzistencijalnom okruženju.


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[155]  Uredba (EU) 2017/458 Europskog parlamenta i Vijeća od 15. ožujka 2017. o izmjeni Uredbe (EU) 2016/399.

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[158]  Anderson, H. (2014) Voices of asylum: an exploration of the role of radio in the asylum-seeker debate. Australian Journalism Review, 37(1), pp. 91-104.

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[160]  Allan, S. (2004) News Culture, Second Edition. Maidenhead and New York: Open University Press.

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[162]  Isto: “Refugees and migrants were discussed as threats to national security in 10.1% of articles in Italy, 9.2% in Spain, 8.5% in Britain, 4.8% in Germany and 2.3% in Sweden. The discussion of refugees and migrants as a cultural threat or a threat to community cohesion was most prevalent in the British press (10.8%), followed by Swedish (8.2%), Italian (8.1%), Spanish (7.4%) and German (5.3%) newspapers. Another noticeable finding was the high incidence of threats to welfare/health systems in the UK press (18.3%) which was much higher than the other countries in the sample (Sweden 11.4%, 7.9% Germany, 7.3% Italy, 6.7% Spain). The prevalence of negative refugee frames could also be seen in the greater tendency for the British press to link refugees and migrants to crime (8.2%) than in other countries (Italy 4.3%, Germany 3.7%, Italy 2.6%, Spain 1.7%).”

[163]  Libisch, A. (2011). News coverage of immigration issues in Europe: A content analysis on how international news agencies portray immigrants to the world. Dissertation. Dostupno na: Pristupljeno 04.04.2018.

[164]  Teroristički napad kojeg su dana 7. siječnja 2015. godine izveli braća Saïd (r. 1980) i Chérif Kouachi (r. 1982), kojom prilikom je smrtno stradalo 12 ljudi.

[165]  Njegovo tijelo u crvenoj majici i plavim hlačicama je otkriveno 2. rujna 2015. godine na turskoj obali.

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[169]  Nolan, D.&Walker, S. Hungarian journalist admit role in forging anti-migrant “atmosphere of fear “. // The Guardian. Dostupno na: Pristupljeno: 02.06.2018.

[170]  Članak Financial Timesa od 25. 06. 2018. se bavi anti-migrantskim službenim dokumentom austrijske vlade, EU predsjedateljice, koji obiluje diskriminacijskom desničarskom retorikom: “… paper generally paints a grim — and contentious — picture on the integration of migrants, echoing the Europe-wide rhetoric of populist and far-right parties. It warns that the backgrounds and “poor perspectives” of “smuggled individuals” who make it to Europe and stay there means they “repeatedly have considerable problems with living in free societies or even reject them”. “Among them are a large number of barely or poorly educated young men who have travelled to Europe alone,” the paper says. “Many of these are particularly susceptible to ideologies that are hostile to freedom and/or are prone to turning to crime.” Izvor: Peel, M.&Politi, J. Austria to push hardline migration policy in EU presidency. //Financial Times. Dostupno na: Pristupljeno 25.06.2018.

[171]  Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism. Digital News Report 2017. Izvor: Pristupljeno: 28.05.2018.

[172]  Napomena: valja istaknuti kako se autorice ograđuju od bilo kakvih mogućih konotacija ili implikacija političkog ili sličnog sadržaja vezanih uz odabir portala u uzorku. Isključivi kriterij se odnosio na medijsku pokrivenost analiziranih incidenata – jer se pokazalo kako pojedini mediji uopće nisu izvještavali o navedenim incidentima.

[173]  Izvor: Studija Fondacije Heinrich Böll :"Mediji i shrinking space u BiH: utišani alternativni glasovi", autorica prof. dr. Lejle Turčilo i doc. dr. Belme Buljubašić, govori o globalnom fenomenu sužavanja prostora djelovanja aktera civilnog društva u domeni medija. Dostupno na: Pristupljeno 02.06.2018.

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Allan, S., News Culture. Second Edition. Open University Press, Maidenhead and New York, 2004.

Anderson, H., Voices of asylum: an exploration of the role of radio in the asylum-seeker debate. Australian Journalism Review, 37(1), pp. 91-104, 2014.

Bradimore, A., Bauder, H., Mystery ships and risky boat people: Tamil refugee migration in the newspaper media. Canadian Journal of Communication, 36(4), 637-661, 2012.

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Clare, M., Abdelhady, D., No longer a waltz between red wine and mint tea: The portrayal of the children of immigrants in French newspapers.//International Journal of Intercultural Relations, 50, 13–28, 2016.

Esses, V.M., Medianu, S., Uncertainty, threat, and the role of the media in promoting the dehumanization of immigrants and refugees. Journal of Social Issues 69(3), 518-536, 2013.

Gale, P., The refugee crisis and fear; populist politics and media discourse. Journal of Sociology, 40(4), 321-340. 2004.

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Holsti, O. R., Content Analysis for the Social Sciences and Humanities. Reading: Addison-Wesley, 1969.

Katunarić, D.,ur.,Carstvo medija : zbornik tekstova, Litteris, Zagreb, 2012.

Libisch, A. (2011). News coverage of immigration issues in Europe: A content analysis on how international news agencies portray immigrants to the world. Dissertation. Dostupno na: Pristupljeno 04.04.2018.

Maxwell, J.A., Qualitative Research Design: An Interactive Approach. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE. 1969.

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Peel, M.& Politi, J. Austria to push hardline migration policy in EU presidency. //Financial Times. Dostupno na: 25.06.2018.

Berry, M., Garcia-Blanco, I., Moore, K., Press Coverage of the Refugee and Migrant Crisis in the EU: A Content Analysis of Five European Countries. UNHCR, 2015. Dostupno na: Pristupljeno: 12.06.2018.

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Uzorak portala

2. 24. sata

Vremenski okvir jedinice analize (dan, mjesec i godina)?

Opći podaci (vršna manifestna kategorija)


1. autorski oblik (vijest, izvještaj, komentar)
2. interpersonalni (intervju, izjava)
3. broj znakova
4. oprema naslovne cjeline (nadnaslov, naslov, podnaslov)
5. grafička oprema (fotografije, statistički podaci, multimedija.)
6. oprema ostalo (potpis fotografije, okviri)

Izvori (vršna manifestna kategorija)


1. visoki službeni (dužnosnici, polit. stranke)
2. državni službenici (policija, bolnica)
3. zagovaratelji
4. stručnjaci
5. građani
6. interesne skupine (NGO, humanitarci., sindikati)
7. tražitelji azila/migranti
8. drugi portali

Teme (vršna latentna kategorija)


1. incident
2. nezakonite migracije
3. nadzor državne granice/sigurnost
4. krijumčarenje ljudima
5. imigracijske brojke
6. diskriminacija
7. nezakonito postupanje policije
8. temeljna prava migranata
9. temeljna prava policajaca
10. humanitarnost
11. integracija
12. djeca migranti
13. žene migranti
14. objašnjenja
15. rješenja
16. nešto drugo

Vrijednosna orijentacija (vršna latentna kategorija)


1. migranti pozitivno
2. migranti negativno
3. EU/RH institucije pozitivno
4. EU/RH institucije negativno
5. NGO/humanitarne organizacije pozitivno
6. NGO/ humanitarne organizacije negativno
7. građani pozitivno
8. građani negativno
9. policija pozitivno
10.policija negativno

Stil i ton (vršna latentna kategorija)


1. informativan /neutralan
2. profesionalan
3. senzacionalistički
4. tendenciozan
5. diskriminirajući
6. kritičan
7. izrazito afirmativan
8. izrazito negativan


Truth, Media and Razor-Wire: Migrants in Croatian Media Landscape




This paper examines the ways of media coverage and presentation of two specific incidents in which migrants and asylum seekers along the Balkan route were involved. A small pilot content analysis was conducted aiming to contribute to existing literature on immigration coverage by mainstream and alternative providers of media content in Croatian and regional media landscape.


Key words: migrants, Balkan route, Croatian news internet media, pilot content analysis, agenda setting, frames.




 8(15)#25 2019

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Časopis je otvorenog pristupa, a ovo djelo je dano na korištenje pod licencom Creative Commons Imenovanje-Nekomercijalno 4.0 međunarodna.

UDK 54-724:366.636
Prethodno priopćenje
Preliminary communication
Primljeno: 23.01.2019.



Marko Grba

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Filozofski, fizički i medijski elektron

Puni tekst: pdf (302 KB), Hrvatski, Str. 2445 - 2454





U suvremeno doba sve većeg utjecaja elektroničkih medija kako na psihologiju pojedinca tako i na društvo općenito, valjalo bi se ozbiljnije posvetiti filozofskoj analizi same osnovice tog načina komuniciranja: elektronu. To podrazumijeva i detaljno ulaženje u poimanja moderne fizike o prirodi materije, prije svega kvantne teorije polja i teorije relativnosti. Postavlja se pitanje što je elektron, što znači reći da je to elementarna čestica i uopće što je značenje pojma elementarna čestica? Također, kako je moguće česticama prenositi signale, dakle komunicirati na daljinu i bežično? Koje je značenje pojma fizička interakcija i koja je priroda interakcije?


Ključne riječi: elektron, elementarna čestica, kvantna teorija, teorija relativnosti, lokalna interakcija, nelokalna korelacija.




Osnovica suvremenih komunikacijskih tehnologija (od radija preko televizije do mobitela, interneta i telekomunikacijskih satelita) jest elektron, elementarna čestica materije i dio fundamentalne teorije kojom fizičari opisuju materijalnu zbilju. Uz elektron, za potrebe ljudske komunikacije koriste se još i fotoni, tj. čestice elektromagnetskog zračenja. Fizičari, međutim, do danas znaju za još 11 elementarnih čestica materije od kojih sve imaju masu i koje interagiraju (međusobno komuniciraju) putem četiriju fundamentalnih međudjelovanja (za koje se ponekad koristi i termin sile, a ponekad polja, a zapravo bi bilo najbolje govoriti isključivo o interakciji obzirom da su prethodna dva pojma problematična, o čemu će kasnije biti više riječi). Šest je leptona (lakih čestica) među koje ubrajamo i elektron i šest kvarkova (teških čestica), dakle ukupno dvanaest elementarnih konstituenata materije, čestica koje su dalje nedjeljive (na bilo kojoj energijskoj razini, odnosno za bilo koju razornu snagu), i to bi bili pravi atomi, najsitnije nedjeljive čestice materije– san antičkih atomista poput Demokrita ili Lukrecija. Atom je prvi put rascijepljen još 1930-ih, nedugo nakon što je otkrivena atomska jezgra kao njegov osnovni dio; dakle već stotinjak godina znamo da su atomi kemijskih elementa dalje djeljivi, otkriće koje je došlo nedugo nakon što su atomi potvrđeni u eksperimentima početkom prošlog stoljeća, a kojima je teorijsko tumačenje dao Albert Einstein u svojim ranim radovima približno godine 1905.

Tablica elementarnih čestica, njih dvanaest, zapravo je pravi popis konstituenata materije, ono što je kemičarima periodni sustav elemenata gdje su čestice elementarne samo za kemičare, u smislu da atomi kemijskih elemenata ostaju nepromijenjeni u kemijskim pretvorbama (obično su to niskoenergijske pretvorbe, nekoliko ili nekoliko desetaka eV[175]). Tom popisu valja dodati još tzv. intermedijare, tj. čestice prijenosnike interakcija. Fizičari danas shvaćaju i interakcije među prethodno navedenim masivnim česticama (ili njihovim kombinacijama, odnosno konglomeratima) kao sudare tih čestica s česticama prijenosnicima, pri čemu uz neka ograničenja prijenosnici interakcije mogu nastajati i nestajati, dok čestice koje interagiraju po pravilu ostaju uvijek na broju, makar ne nužno uvijek kao iste čestice (važno je da ostaju kao čestice iste vrste); fizičari kažu da u nekoj interakciji ukupan broj leptona (lakih čestica) ili jednako tako, ukupan broj bariona (teških čestica) ostaje očuvan. Intermedijari su: foton, čestica prijenosnik elektromagnetske interakcije (one kojom se ostvaruju i sve ljudske komunikacije); tri masivna bozona, prijenosnici slabe nuklearne interakcije (prisutne pri nekim radioaktivnim raspadima), osam gluona, prijenosnika jake nuklearne interakcije (one koja vezuje protone i neutrone u jezgre atoma) i zasad još samo pretpostavljeni graviton, prijenosnik gravitacije. Zanimljivo je da i tri bozona, premda intermedijari (koji su inače čestice bez mase) imaju masu, što se odražava na doseg slabe interakcije i ona je vrlo kratkog dosega. Elektromagnetska i gravitacijska interakcija su jedine dugodosežne i kao takve najpogodnije za neki oblik komunikacije na daljinu.

Elektron je prva otkrivena elementarna čestica (otkriće J. J. Thomsona iz 1897.) i uz foton jedina koja je nakon brojnih izmjena tijekom više od stotinu godina ostala na popisu temeljnih građevnih jedinica materije. Stoga bi se moglo reći da može poslužiti kao model elementarne čestice, jer bi se kod elektrona morale naći osnovne karakteristike svih elementarnih čestica. I tu već počinju problemi: za sve elementarne čestice poznati su i dimenzija, i masa, i naboj, i spin i druga svojstva, dok su za elektron također poznate sve veličine osim jedne, njegove dimenzije. Zašto još uvijek nije moguće dati sigurnu procjenu dimenzija elektrona (kao pretpostavljene kuglice konačnog promjera) dočim je to primjerice za kvarkove kao osnovne konstituente protona ili neutrona a koji su s elektronom osnovni konstituenti atoma, poznato? Na to pitanje nije moguće naći jednoznačan odgovor u bilo kojem od službenih udžbenika fizike čestica, niti se o tom pitanju puno diskutira po stručnim skupovima ili publikacijama (Teller, 1997.). Ono zapravo upućuje na dublje nedostatke kvantne teorije polja kao temeljne teorije materije, u stanju u kakvom se trenutno nalazi. Filozof fizike, ili uopće fizičar koji traga i za interpretacijom svojih jednadžbi, koji bi htio doznati kakvu to zbilju opisuje kvantna teorija polja, mora ostati razočaran: to usprkos svim uspjesima u predviđanju rezultata eksperimenata kao i primjene u najrazličitijim tehnologijama nažalost i dalje nije posve jasno. U nastavku ću pokušati izvršiti rekonstrukciju materijalne stvarnosti kako ju vidi fundamentalna fizika danas, a primijenjenu na pojmove medija, interakcije i objekata u interakciji. Kako je fizika čestica, kako za fizičara tako i za filozofa golem i iznimno složen predmet, valja se ograničiti na neki njen dio, pa neka to bude dio o elektronu i fotonu i njihovim interakcijama, tzv. kvantna elektrodinamika, što će i više nego dostajati za potrebe razumijevanja materijalne osnove filozofije medija i komunikacije općenito.


Dokazi diskretne prirode materije

Dokazi u prilog diskretnoj (ili u starijem žargonu fizičara kao i filozofa- atomističkoj) prirodi materije brojni su i raznorodni. Valja prvo istaknuti da su dokazi prikupljani kroz period od barem dva do tri stoljeća (od pojave prvih kvantitativnih mjerenja u kemiji plinova pa do suvremenih eksperimenata u akceleratorima čestica, poput onoga u CERN-u, ili u kvantnoj optici) te da su prikupljeni za sve raspoložive energije (od nekoliko eV pa do TeV (što je red veličine 1012 eV)). Primjerice, još su Dalton i drugi kemičari pronašli da se kemijski elementi uvijek spajaju u omjerima malih cijelih brojeva (kao da su im spojevi sastavljeni od malog broja sitnih zrnaca tvari, tada još pretpostavljenih atoma), zatim je Perrin odredio dimenzije pretpostavljenih atomskih agregata, molekula, za vrlo tanke slojeve emulzija; Thomson je, i prije no što su potvrđeni atomi kao realni fizički entiteti, otkrio dijelove pretpostavljenih čestica ioniziranog plina – elektrone, Rutherford nedugo kasnije otkriva jezgru atoma u međuatomskim sudarima na tankim listićima metala, a njegovi suradnici uspijevaju izvesti prvu pretvorbu atoma jednog elementa u atom drugog elementa – davni san alkemičara; zatim slijede otkrića raznih nuklearnih i pretvorbi među subatomskim česticama: zapravo cijela fizika čestica kao jedna od najvećih grana fizike dokaz je diskretne prirode materije. Einstein je postulirao i čestice svijetlosti – fotone, koji su otad (1905.) uvijek potvrđivani u svim pokusima atomske fizike ili kvantne optike. Kemiju uopće nije moguće razumjeti bez atomske ili molekulske hipoteze.

Ipak do dana današnjeg za mnoge fizičare ostaje pitanje prirode materije na fundamentalnoj razini. Dapače, pioniri kvantne teorije i atomske fizike bili su skeptični oko postojanja diskretnih entiteta, posebno čestica svjetlosti (Planck, Schrödinger, de Broglie, Bohm, pa čak i Bohr koji je dao prvi kvantni model atoma) (Grba, 2016.). Sam Einstein, koji je postulirao fotone i doprinio ključni dokaz u prilog postojanju atoma, nikad nije prihvatio ni fotone ni atome kao elemente zbilje (Pais, 2008.). Na stranu Einsteinova legendarna neovisnost misli koja je ponekad graničila sa svojeglavošću, ipak ostaje pitati se: postoji li razlog ili razlozi nepovjerenju nekih od najvećih fizičara u diskretnu narav zbilje?

Pregledom ključne literature i izvornih radova (neki od kojih su citirani u Grba, 2016.) moguće je formulirati sljedeću tezu: i unatoč činjenici da svaki eksperiment atomske ili nuklearne fizike, doista cijela fizika čestica i cijela kemija, također uz gotovo sve eksperimente kvantne optike, svjedoče u prilog diskretnoj materiji, fizičari i dalje rezultate svih eksperimenata računaju pomoću teorija (kvantnih polja) koje koriste matematiku kontinuuma (skupova realnih ili kompleksnih brojeva) te daju kao rješenja svih jednadžbi privid nekog neprekinutog medija ili barem polja (apstraktnih) numeričkih vrijednosti, što onda prirodno (?) nameće kontinuum i kao pravu zbilju, istinsku ontologiju. Valja se međutim prisjetiti osnovnog postulata empirijske znanosti, da ne valja činjenice podređivati teoriji, već obratno, teoriju činjenicama. I premda je isprva i stručnjaku u polju kvantne fizike ili filozofije fizike prilično nevjerojatno da bi se neki od najvećih fizičara dali zavesti tzv. ljepotom matematičkih konstrukcija, a na uštrb navodno nezgrapnih rezultata eksperimenata, članak za člankom, publikacija za publikacijom otkriva da nažalost nitko nije imun na tu predrasudu. Poznato je da su Schrödinger i de Broglie do kraja života vjerovali u neku vrst valova materije premda su isti još u samim početcima kvantne teorije bili prokazani kao fikcija (Schrödinger 1952. (a), 1952. (b), de Broglie 1964.) Još 1920-ih Bohm (Bohm, 2002.) je također pokušao razviti cjelovitu novu interpretaciju (nerelativističke) kvantne teorije u kojoj je prema Bohmu i mnogim nastavljačima, ključni sastojak teorije tzv. kvantni potencijal koji je vrlo apstraktan matematički entitet izvan realnog prostora i vremena (bilo Newtonovog ili Einsteinovog) i po vrijednosti uvijek kompleksan broj, dakle, načelno nemjerljiv i neprikladan kao konačni opis fizičke stvarnosti. (Ovdje se nipošto ne želi zauzeti isključivi pozitivistički stav da za elemente zbilje valja jedino priznavati mjerljive veličine, ali se hoće istaknuti da ne treba niti olako iz matematike preuzimati bilo koji entitet kao dio opisa fizičke zbilje samo zato što se pojavljuje na nekom mjestu u teoriji!).

Ključni su zapravo pokusi Youngovog tipa difrakcije zrakâ, bilo svjetlosnog, bilo materijalnog izvora. Thomas Young je još početkom 19. stoljeća izveo pokus koji je vrlo brzo shvaćen kao experimentum crucis u razrješavanju pitanja prirode svjetlosti: je li svjetlost val, kao valovi na vodi, ili zvučni valovi, ili je roj čestica kao što je tvrdio Newton. Zapravo do vremena Youngovog pokusa rijetko je tko više vjerovao u čestičnu hipotezu koja je ostajala na životu više zbog autoriteta njenog postavljača negoli što se pokazala korisnom pri tumačenju optičkih pokusa. Ipak, trebalo je zatvoriti sve rupe u argumentima i provesti odlučujući pokus. Od tada a i zadugo nakon Younga mislilo se da je to bio njegov pokus. Pokus je u biti vrlo jednostavan i sastoji se u propuštanju tanke zrake svjetlosti kroz vrlo usku pukotinu (dimenzije koja odgovara valnoj duljini pretpostavljenog vala svjetlosti, ili energiji svjetlosti ako na svjetlost gledamo kao na roj kvantnih čestica, kao što je mnogo poslije pokazao Max Planck). Ishod je tzv. interferencijski obrazac koji se vidi na udaljenom zidu kao niz svijetlih i tamnih područja (bilo pruga ili mrlja, ovisno o obliku pukotine). Takav obrazac zaštitni je znak valnih gibanja, jer se nešto slično dobiva kad se propusti valove na vodi između dvije bove ili zvuk između prikladno postavljenih barijera. Tako se barem mislilo više od stotinu godina. Ali onda su neki eksperimenti s prijelaza 19. u 20. stoljeće pokazali da se svjetlost doista barem ponekad ponaša kao roj čestica. Dakako, takvo nešto je apsurdno jer je pojam dobro lokaliziranog objekta (čestice određenih dimenzija) sasvim suprotan pojmu vala kao kontinuiranog poremećaja nekog medija ili polja. Je li svjetlost val ili čestica?, rasprava je buknula početkom prošlog stoljeća i žešće negoli početkom pretprošlog!

Stvari su se dodatno i sasvim neočekivano usložnile kada je de Broglie pokazao da bi se i materijalne čestice poput elektrona mogle ponekad ponašati poput valova nekog materijalnog medija, recimo elektronskog medija. Kada? Ako pretpostavimo da se elektronski snop iz katodne cijevi (nalik onoj starog televizora) propusti kroz primjereno usku pukotinu, rezultat će i opet biti interferencijski obrazac, ali za elektrone! A već je bilo dokazano da su elektroni čestice materije, dapače sastavni dijelovi atoma, za to je otkriće Thomson i dobio Nobelovu nagradu za fiziku. Schrödinger je ubrzo napisao jednadžbu čiji su rezultat bile tzv. valne funkcije koje su po njegovu mišljenju trebale i predstavljati elektronske valove, ali onda je ubrzo pokazano da je nemoguće povezati bilo kakve materijalne valove s matematičkim valnim funkcijama. Na pomolu su međutim bili samo novi paradoksi, rješenja kojih nemamo ni do dana današnjeg (Laloё 2001.).

Kako Schrödingerovu jednadžbu nije bilo moguće interpretirati kao jednadžbu valova, a potvrđena je u međuvremenu u svim prikladnim eksperimentima, nametala se potreba za drugačijom interpretacijom. Također su kvanti energije koje je uveo Planck a primijenio Bohr u tumačenju emisija i apsorpcija energije atoma, kao i Einstein pri tumačenju naravi svjetlosti, uvele novost u fiziku: nasumični karakter fundamentalnih procesa, procesa na razini atoma i subatomskih čestica. Ali Schrödingerova je jednadžba bila deterministička, baš kao i Newtonova koju je trebala zamijeniti u mikroskopskim razdaljinama! Danas se zna da su sve jednadžbe kvantne fizike strogo determinističke ali da svejedno sa sigurnošću ne omogućuju predvidljivost, te su sva predviđanja u mikrosvijetu dana kao iskazi vjerojatnosti. Dapače, za atome ne postoje strogi kauzalni zakoni već samo više ili manje složene statistike. To nadalje sugerira da u pozadini prirodnih procesa ne postoje materijalni mehanizmi, jer ne postoje algoritmi po kojima bi se ti mehanizmi odvijali, dakle stvarnost je indeterministička, a opis stvarnosti nužno statistički. No iz svega rečenog jasno je da postoji dodatni problem objašnjavanja veze ili prijelaza od jednog režima na drugi, obzirom da su neke pojave doista determinističke, a opet svi procesi među mikroskopskim česticama materije su u suštini indeterministički.

Autorova sumnja je da je indeterminizam nužno vezan uz diskretnu prirodu materije i da će mnogi, ako ne i svi paradoksi kvantne mehanike biti razriješeni kada se iznađe mehanika kvantne čestice, što bi bilo u skladu s eksperimentalnim zahtjevima, dok je trenutno jedino raspoloživa kvantna mehanika ona valnih jednadžbi koja očito ne može do kraja objasniti zbilju ako i nastavi davati nova eksperimentalna predviđanja.


Pitanje identiteta kvantnih čestica

Leibniz je, baveći se problemom identiteta individuuma, postavio sljedeći aksiom koji je primjenjivao u dobro poznatoj raspravi s Newtonom oko značenja i ontološke vrijednosti tada nove mehanike (Alexander 1956.):

Individuumi koji su po svim svojstvima (atributima) identični, dakle se razlikuju jedino numerički, ipak su različiti individuumi. (autorova verzija).

Ukoliko se zauzme Leibnizov stav (Leibniz, u Loemker 1969.) o mogućim individuumima kao prethodećim (u logičkom i ontološkom smislu) ozbiljenim (u Leibnizovoj terminologiji aktualiziranim) individuumima, tada nema potrebe razlikovati različite verzije načela (aksioma) nerazlučivosti identičnih individuuma (kako se isti naziva u suvremenoj literaturi (French 2006.), eng. principle of the indistinguishability of indiscernibles). U klasičnom smislu, dakle prije adventa moderne fizike, osobito kvantne teorije, načelo bi jednostavno garantiralo da su svake dvije stvari različite, ukoliko već postojeće.

Međutim nedavno je relativno pokazano (French 1988. i 1989. i u člancima navedena literatura) da kvantni objekti proturječe Leibnizovom načelu i na neki način zdravom razumu. Naime, iz naravi kvantnih statistika (Fermi-Diracova statistika za čestice poput elektrona i Bose-Einsteinova statistika za čestice poput fotona) zaključeno je da se između, primjerice dva elektrona u sudaru kojega je rezultat raspršenje (odbijanje) istih, ne može nikakvim sredstvima, bilo teorijskim ili eksperimentalnim, odrediti koji je koji. Drugim riječima, ako se u mislima jednom elektronu koji nadolazi s lijeva prida naljepnica A a onome koji nadolazi s desna, naljepnica B, nakon njihova susreta, pošto su po svim atributima identični i bez obzira što su dvije a ne jedna čestica, nije moguće reći koji završava na lijevo a koji nadesno! Dakle kvantne čestice su nerazlučive, odnosno može se reći da njihov identitet nije uvijek moguće odrediti; u određenim situacijama one gube identitet!

Ovaj još uvijek među širom zajednicom fizičara i filozofa malo poznat zaključak očito govori u prilog neobičnosti zbilje na najmanjim razdaljinama te o njemu valja voditi računa pri svakoj raspravi o načinu postojanja kvantnih objekata; zaključak je to koji zacijelo ima i dalekosežne posljedice po određivanje identiteta i većih, klasičnih objekata, a možda i duhovnih kvaliteta ljudskog identiteta.


Interakcije bez medija i korelacije bez interakcija

Moderna fizika se udaljila od Newtonove koncepcije uzročnosti, kao i njegove idealne koncepcije međudjelovanja, ali se u kvantnoj teoriji opet pojavila actio in distans (djelovanje na daljinu kao u slučaju univerzalne gravitacije) koju su i Newton i gotovo svi njegovi nasljednici pošto-poto htjeli izbjeći.

O uzročnosti ukratko: Aristotel je imao četiri uzroka svakom zbivanju, Newton je za potrebe izgradnje svoje mehanike preuzeo samo jedan (causa efficiens) što se nastojalo zadržati u fizici kao jedini nužno potreban oblik uzročnosti, makar se Newton u ulozi filozofa ili teologa s time zapravo nije slagao. (Poznato je da je poredak u Svemiru koji proizlazi iz prirodnih zakona, jednadžbi koje je Newton među prvima počeo pisati, on vidio tek kao djelomični poredak kojega nadopunjuje mogućnost izravne božanske intervencije!) Einstein je pri svojoj velikoj i gotovo potpunoj reviziji Newtonove mehanike, kao i uopće fizike do svoga vremena, ipak kanio zadržati newtonovsku koncepciju uzročnosti. Problem je bio što je Einsteinova teorija relativnosti nametala temeljne promjene Newtonovih predodžbi o prostoru i vremenu, kao međusobno odjelitih i neovisnih o materiji. Za Newtona vrijeme svuda u Svemiru jednoliko i jednako protječe, dok za Einsteina ovisi o brzini promatrača, kao i blizini i jakosti gravitacijskih polja. Newtonova teorija promjenu (gibanja) pripisuje sili koja bi idealno uvijek trebala djelovati kao kontaktna interakcija, kao pri sudarima biljarskih kugli, ali u slučaju zakona gravitacije izgleda kao da se radi o djelovanju na daljinu, preko golemih udaljenosti svemirskog vakuuma. Einstein je međutim uz pretpostavku gravitacijskog polja medija gravitacijskog međudjelovanja, uspio izvesti svoj još općenitiji zakon, slično kao što je Maxwell izveo svoje jednadžbe elektromagnetske interakcije uz pretpostavku električnog i magnetskog polja, i etera kao sjedišta tih polja. Nevolja je bila što je upravo Einstein svojim radovima iz teorije relativnosti kao i kvantne teorije pokazao da eter po svoj prilici ne postoji, a u svakom slučaju da se nikakvim sredstvima nikada neće moći opaziti!

Protiv svoje volje i usprkos vrlo velikom trudu da pokaže nadmoć teorije poljâ kao konačnog opisa materijalne zbilje, Einstein je na kraju pružio barem dokaze u prilog osnovanoj sumnji da nikakvo fizičko polje ne postoji jer ne postoji medij kao sjedište polja. Dapače, jednadžbe Einsteinove opće teorije relativnosti sugeriraju da ne postoji niti uzročnost u klasičnom Newtonovom smislu. Naime, Einsteinove jednadžbe gravitacijskog međudjelovanja nisu kauzalne, već relacije ekvivalencije, što će reći da se nigdje u Einsteinovoj teoriji ne može jednoznačno ukazati na uzroke gibanju kao različite od posljedica. Einstein samo uspostavlja veze (jednakosti) između različitih fizičkih veličina; u slučaju gravitacije, Einstein uvodi ekvivalenciju između zakrivljenosti prostor-vremena i količine mase-energije u nekom području prostor-vremena, ali ne može jednostavno reći da masa-energija uzrokuje zakrivljenost prostor-vremena ili da zakrivljenost prostor-vremena uzrokuje način gibanja mase-energije, jer niti za jedno teorija ne pruža mehanizam! Nadalje, sjedište gravitacijskog polja bilo bi upravo prostor-vrijeme, ali kako točno da bude sjedište gravitacijskog ali ne i nekog drugog polja, to Einstein opet ne može izvesti iz opće teorije relativnosti.

Uzme li se u obzir da ni kvantna teorija ne dopušta uzročnost već svodi tumačenje svakog elementarnog procesa na određenu statistiku, te da su polja kvantnih teorija polja doista tek apstraktna polja numeričkih vrijednosti fizičkih veličina, ostaje za zaključiti kako je suvremena fizika izvršila krajnju redukciju uzroka i – dokinula uzroke! Aristotel je imao 4 uzroka, Newton 1, Einstein je kad je već morao napustiti ili revidirati gotovo sve ostale koncepte htio opravdati barem Newtonov koncept uzročnosti; suvremena je fizika zaista bez uzroka. Ostaje pitanje od najveće važnosti, kako tumačiti prirodne pojave bez uzročno-posljedične logike, dakle kao isključivo prirodne statistike?

Fizičari su još u 19. stoljeću pokazali da je za opis električnih i magnetskih fenomena, kao i svjetlosti, potrebno uvesti pojam interakcije koja bi se prenosila putem nekog medija, lokalno, od točke do točke. No i dalje je postojala nada da će međudjelovanje medija s proučavanim objektom biti putem Newtonovih sudara. Einstein je, izbrisavši pojam medija iz fizike, zapravo i iznova postavio problem objašnjavanja fizičke interakcije. Kako su kvantna polja apstrakcije, ostaje pitanje kako se zapravo ostvaruje interakcija među kvantnim objektima. Suvremene teorije polja, kao najbolje provjerene fizičke teorije danas i unatoč izostanku potpune interpretacije, nude barem dio odgovora. Kvantne čestice u međudjelovanju ostvaruju interakciju putem posebnih čestica prijenosnika, tzv. intermedijara, čestica po svemu nalik onima među kojima posreduju, ali s osnovnom razlikom da ih osim pod iznimnim okolnostima nije moguće detektirati, pa se nazivaju virtualnim česticama. Virtualni intermedijari nastaju iz vakuuma i u vakuum se ponovno se vraćaju, i sve dok je vrijeme njihove pojave dovoljno kratko, taj mehanizam nije posve poznat.

Einstein je uvidjevši da u fiziku uvodi element nasumičnosti i nepredvidljivosti, u želji da opovrgne kvantnu mehaniku, otkrio ono što će se pokazati kao činjenica koja je dosad najviše uznemirila fizičare i za koju do danas nitko nema pravo objašnjenje. EPR-učinak, nazvan tako prema imenima autora rada u kojem je prvi put predviđen (Einstein, Podolsky, Rosen 1935.), trebao je isprva biti tek paradoks koji ukoliko je stvaran čini kvantnu mehaniku krajnje neuvjerljivom. Einstein je naime ispravno uočio da unutar kvantne teorije postoji mogućnost za usklađivanje fizičkih veličina (atributa) kvantnih objekata, ali bez mogućnosti interakcije među tim objektima. Einstein je isprva mislio da ukoliko su neke veličine stvarno korelirane, to znači da su oduvijek i bile korelirane, što će reći otkako su čestice bile u interakciji (preduvjet je ipak za takve nelokalne interakcije da su objekti u nekom trenutku bili u fizičkoj interakciji) pa do trenutka kad su veličine mjerene. U desteljećima koja su uslijedila, tzv. nelokalne korelacije fizičkih veličina dokazane su za razne sustave i na primjerima različitih veličina, i to uvijek kao korelacije bez interakcija, ali i bez da su veličine za dva objekta u korelaciji ikad prije bile usklađene (Fine 2017.). Einstein je zapravo protiv svoje volje na neki način vratio u fiziku actio in distans, ili kako je on to zvao, sablasno djelovanje na daljinu. Te korelacije nije moguće iskoristiti u komunikacijske svrhe jer su u suštini nasumične i kao takve posve nepredvidljive; moguće ih je, međutim, iskoristiti pri pisanju neprobojnog koda, jer kako za njih ne postoji algoritam tako nije moguće niti probiti kod!



Osnovu komunikacije čine materijalne čestice (u slučaju ljudske komunikacije, elektroni i fotoni). Nema komunikacije brže od brzine svjetlosti (300 000 km/s). Svaka komunikacija je lokalna interakcija za koju međutim nije potreban medij. Postoje i nelokalne korelacije ali se one ne mogu iskoristiti za komunikaciju.


[175]  Elektronvolt, kratica eV, uobičajena je jedinica u kemiji i fizici čestica, to je zapravo vrlo mali iznos energije, reda veličine 10-19 J.



Alexander H. G. (ur.), The Leibniz-Clarke Correspondence, Manchester University Press, Manchester, 1956.

Bohm D., Hiley B. J., The Undivided Universe. An Ontological Interpretation of Quantum Theory, Routledge, London-New York, 2002.

de Broglie L., The Current Interpretation of Wave Mechanics. A Critical Study, Elsevier Publishing Company, Amsterdam-London-New York, 1964.

Einstein A., Podolsky B., Rosen N., Can Quantum-Mechanical Description of Physical Reality Be Considered Complete?, Phys. Rev., 47 777-780. (1935.).

Fine A., The Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen Argument in Quantum Theory, u Zalta E. N. (ur.), The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, izdanje zima2017., URL = <>.

French S., Identity and Individuality in Quantum Theory, u Zalta E. N. (ur.),  The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, izdanje proljeće 2006., URL = <>.

French S., Quantum Physics and the Identity of IndiscerniblesBrit. J. Phil. Sci., 39 233-46. (1988.).

French S., Why the Principle of the Identity of Indiscernibles is not Contingently True EitherSynthese, 78 141-66. (1989.).

Grba M., Fizika nakon čuda 1905.: Nove teorije, neočekivani obrati i fantastični eksperimenti moderne fizike, Alfa, Zagreb, 2016., str. 77-142.

Laloё F., Do We Really Understand Quantum Mechanics? Strange Correlations, Paradoxes, and Theorems, Am. J. Phys., 69 655-701. (2001.).

Leibniz G. W., 1686 letter to Arnauld, u Loemker, L. (ur. i prev.), G. W. Leibniz: Philosophical Papers and Letters, drugo izdanje, D. Reidel, Dordrecht, 1969., str. 333.

Pais A., ˝Subtle is the Lord...˝ The Science and the Life of Albert Einstein, OUP, Oxford, 2008., str. 357-464.

Schrödinger E., Are There Quantum Jumps I?, Brit. J. Phil. Sci., 3 109-123. (1952.).

Schrödinger E., Are There Quantum Jumps II?, Brit. J. Phil. Sci., 3 233-242. (1952.).

Teller P., An Interpretive Introduction to Quantum Field Theory, Princeton University Press, Princeton, 1997.


Philosophical, Physical and Media Electron




In the contemporary age of everincreasing influence of electronic media as much as on an individual psyche as on the society as a whole, it would be of great value to undertake a detailed analysis of the very foundation of that means of communication: the electron. This means also re-evaluating the notions of modern physics on the nature of matter, most importantly the notions of the quantum field theory and general theory of relativity. Some of the questions discussed are: what is an electron, what does it mean to say it is an elementary particle and, in general, what is the meaning of the notion of the elementary particle? Also, how are signals transmitted via particles, so how is telecommunication possible, and wirelessly? What is the meaning and nature of physical interaction?


Key words: electron, elementary particle, quantum theory, theory of relativity, local interaction, nonlocal communication.




 8(15)#26 2019

Creative Commons licenca
Časopis je otvorenog pristupa, a ovo djelo je dano na korištenje pod licencom Creative Commons Imenovanje-Nekomercijalno 4.0 međunarodna.

UDK 070.16:312.7
Pregledni članak
Review article
Primljeno: 12.01.2019.



Jadranka Polović

Zagrebačka 3, 21 000 Split

”Lažne vijesti” kao politički alat sistemske krize
liberalne demokracije i korporativnih medija

Puni tekst: pdf (587 KB), Hrvatski, Str. 2455 - 2470




Fenomen lažnih vijesti i neprovjerenih informacija vrlo je ozbiljan izazov suvremenih, osobito online medija u kojima je etički relativizam postao općeprihvaćena kategorija, a istina vrlo često izložena pritisku komercijalnih vrijednosti. U 2016. godini politički se establishment Sjedinjenih Država kao i Europske unije po prvi put suočio s činjenicom da komunikacijska revolucija ubrzava širenje laži i dezinformacija, ali i da dominantni liberalni sustav društvenih vrijednosti, nekritički podržan od strane mainstream medija, zapravo gubi podršku. Jesu li lažne vijesti tek dio ruske propagande i hibridnog ratovanja pokrenutih s ciljem podrivanja vrijednosti zapadnih demokracija ili su najutjecajniji liberalni mediji glavni izvori lažnih i pristranih vijesti? U radu se propituju razlozi zbog kojih klasični mediji, čak i svojim online izdanjima, gube presudan utjecaj na kreiranje stavova javnosti, te posljedično na usmjeravanje društvenih procesa.


Ključne riječi: lažne vijesti, propaganda, mainstream mediji, online mediji, vrijednosti liberalnih demokracija, sistemska kriza.




Početkom 2018. godine Europska je unija formirala ekspertnu radnu skupinu za borbu protiv lažnih vijesti i dezinformacija na internetu koja je već u svojem prvom izvješću[176] predložila niz ciljanih mjera protiv hibridnog djelovanja i strategije širenja lažnih vijesti. Tim od 39 stručnjaka koji je okupio vrlo različite stakeholderse, uključujući predstavnike najvećih tehnoloških kompanija, novinare, znanstvenike, te aktiviste nevladinog sektora, ima neobično zahtjevan zadatak- u obilju informacija kojima nas svakodnevno zapljuskuju društvene mreže i on line mediji, eksperti bi trebali identificirati one lažne, dakle izmišljene, ali i problematične sadržaje koji mogu (ili već jesu) utjecati na izbore u zemljama članicama EU-a. Izostavljajući izraz „lažne vijesti“ (fake news), ekspertna je skupina, složeni, često fluidni pojam dezinformacija definirala kao „lažne, netočne ili obmanjujuće informacije koje se smišljaju, iznose i šire kako bi se ostvarila dobit ili svjesno nanijela šteta javnosti, te ugrozili demokratski procesi i vrijednosti“. Skupina preporučuje promicanje medijske pismenosti, razvijanje alata koji bi korisnicima, kao i novinarima omogućio prepoznavanje dezinformacija, čime bi se poboljšala vidljivost pouzdanih i vjerodostojnih vijesti. Nakon provedene javne rasprave pokazalo se da su namjerne dezinformacije s ciljem utjecaja na ishod izbora i migracijsku politiku dvije najvažnije kategorije u kojima lažne vijesti mogu nanijeti štetu društvu, zapravo ugroziti demokraciju.


Fake news ili propaganda: mainstream mediji kao prostor ograničene istine

Posvećenost istini zasigurno je najstariji i najcjenjeniji etički princip civilizacije, stoga je ideja istine kao pozitivne vrijednosti duboko usađena u filozofiju morala, ali i u anglosaksonsko kao i kontinentalno pravo.[177] U Sjedinjenim Državama, svaki sudski postupak započinje pitanjem: „Zaklinjete li se da ćete govoriti istinu i samo istinu, tako vam Bog pomogao?“, dok europski zakoni o kleveti prejudiciraju da se medije ne smije kažnjavati zbog istinitog izvještavanja. Načelno, istina je suštinski značajna za demokratski proces, zbog čega su stereotipne tvrdnje- demokracija ovisi o informiranosti građana, ili- mediji potiču analitičko razmišljanje- još uvijek neodvojivi i neupitni dio obrazovnih curriculuma svih zapadnih društava. Jedan od najutjecajnijih filozofa druge polovice 20. stoljeća, Jürgen Habermas[178], javnu sferu promatra kao područje emancipacije i otvorenog dijaloga, prostor u kojem se javno mnijenje oblikuje temeljem razumne i široke rasprave, te koji kao takav služi za legitimaciju vlasti. Javna sfera posreduje između vlasti i društva, u idealnoj situaciji uspostavlja demokratsku kontrolu nad aktivnostima države. Međutim, „strukturalna preobrazba“ javne sfere ili opadanje njenog utjecaja događa se usporedo s usponom masovne potrošnje i komodifikacijom kulture, procesima koje oblikuju masovni mediji. Inženjering odnosa s javnošću postao je ozbiljna prijetnja javnoj sferi, PR (Public Relations) ugrožava istinu i kriterije racionalnosti koji su nekada oblikovali javne argumente.

Edward Barnays[179], jedan od prvih teoretičara propagande, otac industrije odnosa s javnošću, još daleke 1928. godine u svom djelu Propaganda piše kako je ”svjesna i inteligentna manipulacija organiziranim navikama i mišljenjima važan element demokratskog društva”. Propagandu definira kao „dosljedan, trajan napor uložen u kreiranje ili oblikovanje događaja da bi se utjecalo na odnos javnosti prema nekom poduhvatu, ideji ili grupi“. Autor, inače bliski rođak Sigmunda Freuda, smatra da oni koji manipuliraju ovim nevidljivim mehanizmom društva, koji razumiju mentalne procese i društvene obrasce ponašanja masa upravljaju našim životima, oblikuju naše navike, razmišljanja i stavove u bilo kojem segmentu, ne samo u području biznisa ili politike. Barnays ih smatra istinskim vladarima društva. Autor je razvio sustav propagande koji je postao matrica marketinške strategije svih budućih ratova, a njegov se ideološki koncept temelji na ”proizvodnji pristanka”, odnosno na „discipliniranju“ i pristajanju masa na poredak moći i moćnika.[180]

Prema Noamu Chomskom[181], suvremena propaganda niče iz „divovske djelatnosti odnosa s javnošću“, a kako navodi, riječ je o doktrinarnim karakteristikama sustava moći kojima je cilj potaknuti poslušnost i pasivnost građana. Iako sam pojam asocira na Josefa Goebbelsa, Hitlerovog ministra propagande ili na Staljinovu boljševičku ideologiju, ipak propaganda nije izum tek autoritarnih, totalitarnih diktatura. Naime, kako navodi Chomsky, moderna je propaganda stvorena u demokraciji u najslobodnijim zemljama svijeta- Sjedinjenim Državama i Velikoj Britaniji. Za razliku od nacističke propagande, filozofija korporatizma kao vladajućeg društvenog poretka i uočljivo totalitarnog sustava otvorila je prostor „postmodernističkom relativizmu u kojem vrijednosna težina istine ustupa mjesto obmani“.[182] Prema Alvinu Dayu[183] etički je relativizam u medijima pored istine ustoličio i obmanu (laž) koja uključuje zavođenje, netočne formulacije i ima vrlo duboku povijest. Korporacijski su mediji postali usmjereni na tržište i maksimiranje prihoda od oglašavanja, a sadržaj kao kulturni proizvod postaje tek roba koja se može kupiti ili prodati. Ugledni njemački filozof Zygmunt Bauman[184] smatra da je u razdoblju postmoderne etike u kojoj istina postaje vrlo relativna kategorija sve više sumnji „u istinu o stvarnosti“ koja je suprotna onoj koja nam je rečena. Jednako tako, i engleski autor Colin Crouch[185] govori o postdemokraciji ili entropiji demokracije u kojoj izbori postaju „igre oko brendova“, a izražavanje političke volje građana sve sličnije marketinškim kampanjama već otvoreno temeljenim na manipulacijskim tehnikama kakve se koriste pri prodaji robe. Živimo u vremenu duboke „krize istine“[186] ili u eri post- istine u kojoj se pojam propagande, često negativno određen, prometnuo u vrlo otmjen izraz- odnose s javnošću (Public Relations). PR u funkciji je kontrole ljudskog ponašanja, odnosno manipulacije javnošću. Svrha propagande u demokraciji je uklanjanje svake racionalne kritičke diskusije, a apsurdnost unifikacije informacija koju nam odašilju mainstream mediji vodi nas masovnom usvajanju korporatistički prihvatljivih političkih stavova. Usprkos glorifikaciji znanosti, masovni su mediji, obrazovanje, kao i religijski sustavi sasvim posvećeni oblikovanju neznanstveno nastrojenih građana koji ne razmišljaju niti kritički, niti analitički.[187] Totalitarno društvo budućnosti (ili naše sadašnjosti) kojim upravlja „Veliki Brat“ opisano je u Orwellovom distopijskom romanu 1984.[188], kao i u Vrlom novom svijetu Aldousa Huxleya[189] koji oslikava moguće globalizirano društvo sretnih, zdravih i tehnološki naprednih ljudi kojim upravlja svjetska vlada. „Pranje mozga“, pod utjecajem propagande koja glorificira konzumerizam i promiskuitetno seksualno ponašanje te farmaceutsku kontrolu emocija, izloženo u Huxleyevom romanu, preslika je „skrivenog protuslovlja“ ili fiktivne stvarnosti suvremenih društava koja se oblikuje pod utjecajem „sveprisutne apsurdnosti medijskih informacija“.[190]

Pojam fake news (lažne vijesti), danas u svakodnevnoj uporabi politike i medija, postao je popularan zahvaljujući američkom predsjedniku Donaldu Trumpu koji u svojim twittovima nastoji diskreditirati medijsko izvještavanje američkih mainstream[191] medija nepodudarno s njegovim stavovima. Uslijedio je i odgovor medija, pa je tako Washington Post uveo praksu kontekstualiziranja Trumpovih twittova, a istinitost predsjednikovih tvrdnji može se provjeriti u preglednicima Cromea i Fireboxa. Tijekom parlamentarnih izbora 2017. godine koji su održani u zemljama članicama Europske unije uporaba termina proširila se neobično brzo. Nesumnjivo, fenomen lažnih vijesti i neprovjerenih informacija vrlo je ozbiljan izazov suvremenih medija u kojima etički imperativ više ne postoji, u kojima je vrlo tanka linija između istine i laži. Moralni relativizam obilno prisutan u medijima postao je općeprihvaćena kategorija u medijskom izvještavanju, a istina vrlo često izložena ”pritisku komercijalnih vrijednosti”[192]. Alvin Day smatra da bi mediji trebali podijeliti moralnu odgovornost za srozavanje demokracije. Kada mediji nisu odani demokratskom mandatu niti žele da opslužuju politički i demokratski sustav koji im je omogućio da postoje, oni postaju kulturno disfunkcionalni i demokratskom sustavu uskraćuju vitalnost.

Američki predsjednik, Donald Trump, o medijima govori kao o „neprijateljima naroda“, dok ga oni optužuju za kontinuirane napade i zatiranje medijskih sloboda. „Poremećaj informacija“ zaista upućuje da bi novinari, time i medijske korporacije trebali raditi na razvoju alata i servisa za provjeru informacija, te svakako obnoviti znanja iz etike u medijima. Snažan rast dezinformacija na društvenim medijima a s ciljem ostvarenja političkih ciljeva, upućuje na usku povezanost lažnih vijesti s propagandom. Dok su lažne vijesti „fabricirane informacije bez provjerenih činjenica, izvora i citata“[193], propaganda se definira kao „selektivno korištenje argumenata i informacija s ciljem proizvodnje političkog učinka i potkopavanja političkih ideala[194]. Dezinformacije također predstavljaju politički motivirane poruke ciljano dizajnirane da stvore javno nepovjerenje, apatiju i paranoju, te mobiliziraju javnost za društvenu i političku promjenu. Naime, kad društvena ili politička poruka koja proizlazi iz „vijesti“ počinje ciljano i manipulativno mijenjati društvenu realnost, mediji napuštaju svoju tradicionalnu ulogu, te počinju djelovati na područje propagande.


Liberalne demokracije i izazovi socioekonomskih nejednakosti - gdje je nestala moć mainstram medija?

U 2016. godini politički se establishment Sjedinjenih Država kao i Europske unije po prvi put suočio s činjenicom da komunikacijska revolucija ubrzava širenje laži i dezinformacija, ali i da dominantni liberalni sustav promoviranih društvenih vrijednosti, nekritički podržan od strane mainstream medija, zapravo gubi podršku. Izbor američkog predsjednika, Donalda Trumpa te Brexit, bili su prijelomni događaji koji su u prvi plan istakli opasnosti od post-truth ere kao temeljnog izazova etičkog novinarstva ali i vladajuće politike. Eskalirajući pad povjerenja u institucije sustava prisutan diljem Europe, uspon populističkih stranaka, elastičnost populističke propagande, protuimigracijska retorika, sve upitnija podrška identitetskim politikama, suočili su političke elite u okcidentalnim demokracijama s mogućnošću radikalne promjene, odnosno političkog preokreta. Nakon što se pokazalo da Fukuyamina[195] teza o „kraju povijesti“ ili uspostavljenom konsenzusu o liberalnoj demokraciji kao konačnom obliku ljudske vladavine više ne „drži vodu“, zapadni se establishment odjednom zapitao zbog čega opada utjecaj Zapada, zbog čega liberalne vrijednosti više nisu beskompromisno prigrljene od strane javnosti. „Mi smo u informativnom ratu, Sjedinjene Države gube taj rat“, zaključila je Hillary Clinton,[196] bivša američka državna tajnica već 2011. godine, što se pokazalo sudbonosnim po njenu kandidaturu na američkim predsjedničkim izborima 2016. godine. Budući da su društvene mreže razvile pristup alternativnim izvorima informacija, formatiranje stavova javnosti više nije bilo isključivo pod utjecajem mainstream medija. Prema istraživanju znanstvenog tima NiemanLaba[197] sa Sveučilišta Harvard, tijekom kampanje za američke predsjedničke izbore 2016. godine, 360 tiskanih medija u SAD-u pozvalo je svoje čitatelje da glasaju za Hillary Clinton. Svega 11 ih je odlučilo podržati Trumpa.[198] Unatoč do detalja razrađenoj marketinškoj kampanji i već „dovršenom“ imageu Hillary kao predsjednice, Donald Trump je ipak pobijedio. Ovaj neočekivani izbor proizveo je zabrinutost oko budućnosti novinarstva, mogućnosti utjecaja medija, ali i sve češćeg propitivanja vrijednosti liberalnih demokracija. Gdje je nestala moć mainstream medija - zapitali su se mnogi!

Postoje najmanje dva relevantna razloga zbog kojih klasični mediji čak i svojim online izdanjima gube presudan utjecaj na kreiranje stavova javnosti, te posljedično na usmjeravanje društvenih procesa.

Kao prvo, sve je više otvorenih pitanja koja proizlaze iz korporativne snage internetskih kompanija. Naime, upravo preko novih tehnologija medijske platforme poput Googlea i Facebooka, siromaše utjecaj tradicionalnih izdavačkih i medijskih kuća te tako postaju prijetnja budućnosti industrije vijesti. Istovremeno, postalo je očito da ove tehnološke platforme nisu spremne poštivati već naveliko načete postulate etike u medijima, kao niti uzeti u obzir javnu svrhu novinarstva. Nakon što se u javnom diskursu uvriježila pretpostavka prema kojoj su lažne vijesti koje su se proširile Facebookom znatno utjecale na ishod američkih predsjedničkih izbora 2016. godine, Mark Zuckerberg, „osumnjičeni“ vlasnik ove društvene mreže, zaključio je da se radi o "prilično ludoj ideji“. Zuckerberg smatra kako je Facebook tek tech company ili platforma, nikako izdavač. Ipak, budući da vodi poslovanje vrijedno 325 milijardi dolara, te da je Facebook šesta po veličini svjetska kompanija, golijat u svijetu vijesti na društvenim mrežama, Zuckerberg je za mnoge najmoćniji urednik na svijetu. Prema Pew Research Centeru više od 50% građana informira se na društvenim medijima, u SAD čak više od 60%.[199]

Odjednom je postalo očito kako Facebook platformu prije svega koristi s ciljem privlačenja oglašivača, te kada je riječ o informativnim sadržajima bez stvarnog je interesa za izgradnju ugleda i povjerenja. Algoritmi Facebooka ograničavaju raspon sadržaja informacija, međutim oni nisu niti mogu biti zamjena za ljude koji su i u vremenu automatizacije prijeko potrebni za analizu konteksta i prosuđivanje onog što se objavljuje. Sve je više suglasja da uređivačke odluke trebaju donijeti ljudi koji razumiju sadržaje od javnog interesa i koji razumiju vrijednosni sustav u kojem djeluju mediji. Međutim, usmjereni isključivo profitom, mediji su se odlučili za „oštre rezove“, odnosno bitno zanemarili ulaganje u ljudske resurse i istraživačko novinarstvo. Mainstream mediji kao dio vrlo utjecajne korporativne medijske industrije sve više prate agendu političkih i korporativnih elita, zbog čega su evidentno postali nepovezani s medijskom publikom ili javnošću.

Drugi razlog je možda i važniji! U trenutku kada je liberalni mit o kraju povijesti i kraju ideologija postao naširoko propitivan uslijed ispraznosti obećanja postdemokratskog društva, kampanja usmjerena na zaustavljanje navodno lažnih vijesti i ruske propagande u zapadnim je demokracijama postala medijski vrlo eksponirana tema. Naime, globalna financijska kriza i kriza eurozone 2008. godine jasno su pokazale da je dominirajući model ekonomske politike vrlo odgovoran za recesiju, veliku nezaposlenost, kao i pad prihoda milijuna zaposlenih širom zapadnih društava. Sve ovo oštetilo je reputaciju liberalne demokracije kao pobjedničkog sustava, postalo je očito da se radi o dubokoj sistemskoj krizi, dok je politički i gospodarski uspon autoritarnih zemalja- Rusije i Kine pokazao da se one možda spremnije nose s izazovima globalizacije. Neke zemlje koje su bile uspješne liberalne demokracije (Mađarska, Poljska, Tajland, Turska) „skliznule“ su natrag prema autoritarnosti. Uspon populističkog nacionalizma u neupitnim liberalnim demokracijama- Velikoj Britaniji i SAD šokirao je političke elite. No, lijeve liberalne vrijednosti poput (vrlo upitne) jednakosti pred zakonom ili identitetskih politika, nisu rezultirale solidarnošću, ekonomskom i socijalnom jednakošću, zapravo pravednim društvom. Unatoč ukupnom povećanju svjetskog bogatstva u proteklih 30 godina enormno su povećane dohodovne su nejednakosti. Značajni dijelovi zapadnih društava doživljavaju stagnaciju dohodaka ili silaznu društvenu mobilnost, a prijetnja ekonomskom statusu dijelom objašnjava narastanje populističkog nacionalizma u SAD-u i Europi. Politike zaštite svakovrsnih identiteta donijele su nove kulturne norme, oblikovane su i institucionalizirane vrlo konkretne javne politike, ali su političke elite (vladajuće, kao i opozicijske) u potpunosti zapostavile izazove socioekonomske nejednakosti. Trenutna disfunkcija američkog i europskog političkog sustava[200] povezana je s ekstremnom i brzorastućom društvenom polarizacijom, a preko ideološkog spektra političke korektnosti koji oblikuju mediji, politika identiteta postala je ogledalo preko kojeg se zrcali većina društvenih problema. Novi populisti nostalgično naglašavaju svoju etničku pripadnost ili religiju, vrijednosti koje su procvale u društvima uglavnom bez imigranata.

Ipak, unatoč suvremenim James Bondovima koji tragaju za lažnim vijestima, fake news su odavno prisutne na medijskom tržištu, vrlo su korišten alat zapadnih liberalnih demokracija u uspostavljanju globalnog poretka. Kao što smo naveli, pojam je popularizirao predsjednik Trump koji je ovom kovanicom osporavao vijesti suprotne njegovim interesima, ali je time samo pojačao percepciju da su informacije bilo lažne, bilo istinite, tek oružje u nečijim rukama. Opće je poznato da u izvještavanju o ratnim sukobima zapadni mainstream mediji primjenjuju dvostruke standarde, te da su odnosi s javnošću u funkciji realizacije zapadnih strateških interesa.

Još od „Pustinjske oluje“ (1990.), kao prvog rata „u živo“ čiji smo prijenos mogli pratiti zavaljeni u svoje naslonjače, mediji su, bez pretjerivanja, dio globalne zavjere. Naime, svjedočanstvo mlade Kuvajćanke (Nayirah testimony)[201] koja je navodno radila kao volonterka u bolnici i koja je svjedočila pred zapanjenom svjetskom javnošću o užasima ubojstava beba u inkubatorima koje su počinili irački vojnici, bilo je presudno za mobilizaciju međunarodne javnosti u potpori Sjedinjenim Državama u okupljanju vrlo široke koalicije, te poslije u pokretanju invazije na Irak. Iako je njezinu priču potvrdio Amnesty International, ubrzo se pokazalo da je fake. Djevojka koja je svjedočila nije bila nikakva bolnička volonterka, već kćer kuvajtskog veleposlanika u Washingtonu.

Ako se prisjetimo, invazija na Irak 2003. pokrenuta je temeljem fake newsa tj. lažnih informacija koje je plasirao predsjednik Bush, a prema kojima je tadašnji irački predsjednik, Saddam Hussein, posjedovao oružje za masovno uništenje[202]. Stradali su milijuni ljudi i nikome ništa! Romantičarski narativ o Arapskom proljeću, 2011. razbijen je u „paramparčad“ nakon što je postalo jasno da su CIA-e i druge američke obavještajne službe upravljale društvenim mrežama Twitterom i Facebookom tijekom demonstracija[203]. Opće je poznato da je CNN lider u lažnom i iskrivljenom ratnom izvještavanju javljanje uživo iz sigurnog okruženja često „začinio“ pozadinskim audiovizualnim efektima, tj. kazališnom scenom. Na medijske „lažnjake“ stradale djece, ubijenih ljudi, manipulacije slikama u svrhu ratne propagande, valjda smo već oguglali.

Proučavajući izvještavanje korporativnih medija o suvremenim sukobima, američki autor, Florian Zollman[204] zaključuje da zapadni mediji uglavnom predstavljaju glavne izvore lažnih i pristranih vijesti. U proteklih nekoliko desetljeća američki, britanski i drugi zapadni mainstream mediji bili su pratitelji razornih vojnih intervencija, te iznimno angažirani u oblikovanju selektivnog i navijačkog diskursa. Autor navodi kako su tijekom priprema za vojnu intervenciju u Libiji zapadni mediji ciljano otvorili medijski prostor za čelnike američkih, britanskih i vlada država članica EU-a, zapadnih eksperata, kao i glasnogovornike libijskih oporbenih skupina koji su zahtijevali vojnu intervenciju te uspostavljanje zone zabrane leta. Glavni argument ove kampanje bio je sadržan u fake informaciji prema kojoj su Gaddafijeve zrakoplovne snage namjeravale neselektivno gađati vlastite građane. Dodatno, zapadni su mediji plasirali vijest o zločinima nad ženama koje su silovale libijske regularne postrojbe. Središnja uloga zapadnih mainstream medija bila je uvjeriti zapadnu javnost u promovirani stereotip- Gaddafi je čudovište koje mora odstupiti. Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch kao i Odbor UN-a odlučili su se za šutnju, te tek nakon što je libijski predsjednik ubijen, a rat na terenu eskalirao objavili su kako nisu pronašli nikakve dokaze o silovanju.

Kako navodi Zollman, i prilikom „pokrivanja“ sirijskog rata zapadni su mediji usvojili isti model izvještavanja koji su već institucionalizirali u Libiji. Medijske vijesti o Siriji jako su se oslanjale na izvore iz druge ruke koje su pružili službeni zapadni i sirijski oporbeni izvori. Propaganda zapadnih medija u potpunosti je naglasila krivnju sirijske vlade i osobno predsjednika Bashara al- Assada. Izvještavanje iz Sirije uvijek je imalo ekskluzivu licence Al-Qaede koja nije tolerirala balansirane informacije, zbog čega su se kampanje sastojale od nevjerojatne količine manipulativnih informacija koje su imale maksimalni politički učinak.

U tom, ali i u svim narednim (uključujući ratove na prostoru bivše Jugoslavije), CNN kao i druge velike globalne medijske korporacije postali su nedjeljivi čimbenici ratovanja, zapravo predvodnici ratnih kampanja. Izvještavanje u realnom vremenu, na žalost, nije neposredna spoznaja istinitih zbivanja, radi se o primarnoj medijskoj manipulaciji, masovnoj obmani, koja kod gledatelja izostavlja vlastito analitičko razmišljanje. CNN-ove spektakularne snimke iračkog rata 1990., a zatim 2003. („live from Bagdad“), kojima je Amerika poslala poruku svijetu, udarale su na naše emocije kombinacijom različitih pristupa[205]. Manipulacija krvavim snimkama ljudskih tragedija, rat kao televizijski spektakl u režiji CNN-a, uspješno su konstruirali lažnu stvarnost. Propaganda, namjerna manipulacija informacijama koje se sastoje od istinitih, ali pažljivo odabranih činjenica koje mediji mogu prikazati kao pozitivne ili ih sotonizirati, oduvijek je bila središnja komponenta ratovanja. Naime, istina u mainstreamu uvijek je selektivna!

Naravno, novi zapadni makartizam[206] započeo je s Ukrajinom i ruskom aneksijom Krima, 2014. godine, međutim nakon neočekivane pobjede Donalda Trumpa. poprimio je razmjere masovne histerije. Bliski suradnici kao i sam predsjednik našli su se pod optužbama za „petljanje“ s Rusijom i zavjeru protiv SAD-a. U problemima su se našli i Facebook, Twitter i Google koji su optuženi da su otvaranjem svog oglašivačkog prostora ruskim medijima (RT i Sputnjik) zapravo pomogli pobjedu „neželjenog“ predsjednika. Rusi su potom optuženi i za Brexit, „organizirali“ su nerede u Kataloniji, a o njihovom „malignom“ utjecaju na Balkanu sve je više-manje poznato.

Fake news, ruska propaganda i širenje dezinformacija koje bi mogle detronizirati europske čelnike pred izbore za Europski parlament koji će se održati u svibnju 2019. godine postaju zaglušujuća top tema. U Francuskoj zaista nije uobičajeno da šef države odlučuje jesu li informacije koje mediji prenose dobre ili loše, osobito je krajnje neobično da nadzire donošenje novih zakona kojima se regulira rad audiovizualnih medija. Međutim, Francuska je u studenom 2018. godine usvojila zakon kojim se nastoje suzbiti lažne vijesti tijekom predizbornih kampanja[207]. Iako francuski zakon o slobodi medija već odavno prepoznaje kategoriju lažnih vijesti (kazna je 45 000 eura), novi zakon ciljano je usmjeren na „lažne vijesti, klevetničke glasove ili druge lažne manevre koji djeluju na preusmjeravanje glasova tijekom izbora“. U fokusu novih zakona je blaćenje političara i javnih osoba, a pod posebnim nadzorom naći će se oglašivački sadržaji „stranih“ medija (misli se na RT France i Sputnik) koji se mogu ograničiti ili zabraniti. Naravno, u „normalnim“ neoliberalnim okolnostima komercijalni interesi medija našli bi se ispred zakona o cenzuri ulaganja, međutim tinjajući hibridni rat upućuje njihove vlasnike na oprez.[208]

Nadalje, u studenom 2018. godine francuski predsjednik Emanuel Macron predstavio je i Parišku inicijativu za povjerenje i sigurnost u cyber prostoru[209], dokument koji reafirmira ideju regulacije interneta s pozicije zaštite ljudskih prava. Ovo je nova/stara inicijativa francuskog predsjednika koja se nastavlja na već postojeću ideju Tima Bernersa Lea, izumitelja weba čija je zaklada World Wide Web Foundation nedavno predstavila „Ugovor za bolji web“[210] koji sadržava temeljne principe (slobode, otvorenosti, neograničenog pristupa, sigurnosti...), koji bi trenutni internet trebali učiniti boljim.

Ugovor je namijenjen vladama, velikim korporacijama, ali i pojedinačnim korisnicima budući da svi zajedno snose odgovornost za kvalitetu online sadržaja. Berners Lee smatra da mreža „tapka u mjestu“ jer to više nije otvorena ni konstruktivna platforma kakvu je zamislio prije 29 godina. Naveo je niz razloga za zabrinutost poput- nezadovoljstva korisnika komercijalnim oglašavanjem, narušavanjem privatnosti, te širenjem govora mržnje i lažnih vijesti. Ugovor o webu zahtijeva od vlada da tretiraju privatnost kao temeljno ljudsko pravo, a tu ideju podupiru i vodeće tehnološke korporacije, poput Googlea, Facebooka, Applea i Microsofta.

Ugovor je otvorio raspravu o potrebi regulacije mreže budući da se radi o cyber prostoru kojim se koristi polovica čovječanstva, a trenutno njime upravlja tehnička zajednica privatnih igrača. „Ako ne reguliramo odnos prema podacima korisnika, kakav onda smisao imaju demokratske izabrane vlade“, zapitao se Macron. Rusija i Kina već su odbile potpisati slične prijedloge u okviru UN-a budući da one naglašavaju državni suverenitet iznad ljudskih prava pojedinaca, što znači da inzistiraju na vlastitom suverenom pravu da prikupljaju podatke o svojim državljanima ili definiraju standarde govora mržnje različito od zapadnog vrijednosnog sustava.

Njemačka je već usvojila Zakon protiv govora mržnje i lažnih vijesti na internetu[211] prema kojem društvenim mrežama (Facebook, Twitter) ali i programima za komunikaciju poput WhatsApp-a, platformama za elektroničku poštu te video komunikaciju, prijete iznimno visoke kazne do 50 milijuna eura. Radi se o komercijalnim platformama koje imaju više od dvije milijarde korisnika, a čiji su vlasnici prinuđeni preuzeti ulogu pravosuđa te razmatrati žalbe korisnika na „govor mržnje“. Facebook je, suočen s optužbama da potiče ruski upliv u demokratske izbore (ne samo američke), napokon formirao tzv. „war room“[212] u kojoj regimenta inženjera, znanstvenika i drugih stručnjaka svakodnevno radi na zaustavljanju širenja dezinformacija i ruske propagande.

Nadalje, sloboda izražavanja na internetu ugrožena je već odavno i ugradnjom specijalnih softwarea koji temeljem otiska prstiju mogu filtrirati i brisati neželjene sadržaje. Facebook zbog pritužbi policije već odavno uklanja postove o policijskom nasilju u SAD-u. Ovakvi softwarei postaju digitalni instrumenti cenzure koji su se do sada primjenjivali isključivo za uklanjanje pornografskih sadržaja s djecom a manje sadržaja s „terorističkom propagandom“. Sjetimo se da se upravo ISIL godinama obilato koristio uslugama zapadnih internetskih platformi putem kojih je nesmetano plasirao svoje horror filmiće odrubljivanja glava i slao poruke pritajenim spavačima koji su time inspirirani počinili stravične zločine u Europi.

Novi njemački zakon uvodi i „kontrolore činjenica“! Korektiv, tim istraživačkih novinara koji tragaju za lažnim vijestima, osnovan je 2014.g. tijekom velikog pada kredibilnosti mainstream medija koji su izvještavali o zbivanjima u Ukrajini. Korektivom predsjeda Bodo Hombach, bivši njemački ministar, koordinator Pakta za stabilnost jugoistočne Europe, te urednici Der Spiegla, Sterna i Die Zeita, dakle „medijski mainstream dobio je monopol na procjenu istine od koje je zaštitio najprije sam sebe. Naime, Korektiv je priopćio kako neće procjenjivati istinitost vijesti vodećih medijskih kuća i etabliranih medija. Po načelu - istina to smo mi.[213]

Pod pritiskom sadržaja koje zapadne vlade smatraju dezinformacijama i propagandom, a koje su prema njima utjecale na tijek američkih, njemačkih i drugih europskih izbora, Facebook je sklopio sporazum s, PolitFactom, ABC Newsom, The Associated Pressom,, Liberationom i nizom drugih medijskih korporacija o izgradnji „alata“ koji omogućavaju korisnicima tih društvenih mreža da prijave lažni sadržaj.[214] Trenutno se u okviru projekta Odjela za primijenjenu etiku Sveučilišta Santa Klara u Sjedinjenim Državama, testiraju i „indikatori povjerenja“ (trust indicators)[215], putem kojih će korisnici dobiti podatke o autoru i korištenim izvorima. Washington Post, The Economist, The Globe, neki su od početne skupine izdavača koji koriste indikatore. Pored toga, Facebook i Twitter, koji su se našli pod snažnim kritikama američke duboke države, najavili su planove za „povećanje transparentnosti“ kada je u pitanju oglašavanje npr. ruskih medija.

Što se tiče zapadnih vlada u tijeku su značajni napori za zaustavljanjem lažnih vijesti i ruske propagande koja se služi širokom lepezom sredstava i instrumenata (soft power) kao što su skupine za strateško promišljanje, specijalne zaklade (Ruski mir), televizijske i multimedijske kuće (RT i Sputnik), vjerske skupine, a sve s ciljem potkopavanja demokratskih vrijednosti Europe, te pridobivanja podrške europske javnosti. Medijska pismenost kao sposobnost pristupa, analize, vrednovanja i odašiljanja poruka posredstvom medija stoga postaje jedna od najvažnijih kompetencija u 21. st.[216]

Međutim, kampanja borbe protiv lažnih vijesti praćena je politikama usmjerenim na cenzuru alternativnih medija i demontažu propisa o neutralnosti mreže. Zapadni novinari u mainstream medijskim korporacijama izloženi su snažnim političkih pritiscima kako bi prevladali „osobna uvjerenja“ i „etičke ideale“ te svojim izvještavanjem ili analitikom zapravo podržali postojeći sustav odnosa moći[217]. Vijestima dominiraju službeni izvori i vladine perspektive društvene realnosti. Američki znanstvenik W. Lance Bennet[218] ističe kako su mediji zapravo papagaji vlade (ova je kovanica široko citirana u znanstvenoj javnosti) zbog čega profesionalni novinari usklađuju svoja stajališta i uređivačke politike prema rasponu mišljenja vlade. Kada je riječ o predsjedniku Trumpu sve što se ne slaže s vrijednosnim sustavom duboke ili korporativne države medijski je sotonizirano, ali njegova militaristička politika uopće nije predmet interesa niti istrage medija budući da je u suglasnosti s vizijom, ne samo republikanaca, već i demokrata u Washingtonu.

Kako navodi Zollman[219], većina liberalnih demokracija je već početkom 20. stoljeća „institucionalizirala free market ekonomski model. Izuzev javnih medija, gotovo svi vrlo ugledni informativni mediji ovise o korporativnom sponzorstvu putem financiranja oglašavanja. Posljedica je da informativni sektor mora podržavati ključne interese poslovne zajednice, a ta je praksa vidljiva i u hrvatskim mainstream medijima. O tome piše i Thomas Ferguson[220] koji navodi kako mediji pod kontrolom velikih investitora koji teže maksimiziranju profita ne potiču širenje vijesti koje mogu dovesti do masovnog nezadovoljstva vladinim politikama. Slijedom toga mnogi problemi zapadne populacije (uključujući i trenutnu migrantsku krizu) neće biti objektivno prikazani. Benjamin I. Page[221] definira takvo izvještavanje kao elite- mass gaps (jaz između elite i masa). U izvještavanju o nekim pitanjima taj je jaz tako velik da javni diskurs može biti vrlo daleko od vrijednosti i zabrinutosti građana.

Digitalna tehnologija potencijalno podržava različite tijekove informacija, načelno je to prostor slobode, međutim, pokazalo se da je okružje starog medijskog sustava ostalo žilavo i neporaženo. U knjizi Digital Disconnect: How Capitalism is Turning the Internet Against Democracy, američki autor Robert McChesney[222] navodi da su još sredinom devedesetih godina kao rezultat političkog dogovora “svi aspekti javne usluge interneta zapravo privatizirani i preobraženi u slobodno tržište, naravno, uz nelagodu znanstvenika (pa i čuvenog Tima Bernersa Lea) koji su internet i moderne komunikacijske tehnologije stvorili javnim novcem. Nakon institucionalizirane privatizacije, alati i prostor za oglašavanje postali su glavna pokretačka snaga razvoja internet tehnologije. Stoga je temeljna funkcija digitalnog komunikacijskog sustava praćenje korisničkih podataka, a online oglašavanje je nezaustavljivo otvorilo prostor za globalno masovno nadgledanje građana od strane komercijalnih korporacija i obavještajnih službi. Monopolske su korporacije, usko vezane uz zapadne korporativne (strateške) interese učinkovito kolonizirale mrežno okruženje, zbog čega je sasvim izvjesno da će nova regulacija smanjiti prostor slobode, te povećati kontrolu i nadzor.



U 2016. godini politički se establishment zapadnih liberalnih demokracija, po prvi put suočio s činjenicom da komunikacijska revolucija ubrzava širenje laži i dezinformacija, ali i da dominantni liberalni sustav promoviranih društvenih vrijednosti, nekritički podržan od strane mainstream medija, gubi podršku. Izbor američkog predsjednika Donalda Trumpa te rezultati britanskog referenduma o izlasku Velike Britanije iz EU, bili su prijelomni politički događaji koji su pokrenuli rasprave o kredibilitetu i utjecaju tradicionalnih mainstream medija u digitalnom okruženju društvenih mreža i drugih online izvora koji redefiniraju političku komunikaciju, demokratsko upravljanje i politiku. Informacijski medijski prostor post-truth ere postao je temeljni izazov etičkog novinarstva ali i liberalnih politika. Naime, eskalirajući pad povjerenja u institucije sustava prisutan diljem Europe rezultirao je snažnim nepovjerenjem građana u mainstream medije, te njihovim usmjeravanjem prema alternativnim izvorima vijesti koji su postali dostupni razvojem internetskih platformi. Društveni su mediji mijenjajući komunikacijsku dinamiku između političara, novinara i javnosti otvorili prostor za političku raspravu, nakon čega je postalo vidljivo da su liberalne demokracije i pridruženi mainstream, korporativni mediji zapali u sistemsku krizu iz koje tradicionalnim i poznatim načinima ne mogu izaći.

Potraga za ”lažnim vijestima” definitivno će rezultirati smanjivanjem prostora slobode kao temeljne vrijednosti liberalne demokracije, te povećati cenzuru, kontrolu i nadzor. S druge strane, dekonstrukcija političkog (Fukuyaminog) poretka - sprege liberalne demokracije i korporativnih medija, već je započela. Stoga je vrlo utemeljeno pitanje ima li korporativni poredak snage za vlastito preispitivanje, sprječavanje entropije i mogućnost promjene oligarhijsko uspostavljenog sustava!


[176]  Final report of the High Level Expert Group on Fake News and Online Disinformation, EC, 12 March 2018, dostupno na, zadnji pristup 10. 12. 2018.

[177]  Louis Alvin Day, Primeri i kontraverze, Medija centar, Beograd; Plus, Beograd, 2004., str. 101.

[178]  Habermas, Jürgen, The Structural transformation of the Public Sfere, Cambridge, Polity, 1989.

[179]  Barnays, Edward, Propaganda, Ammonite, Beograd, 2015:27.

[180]  Milardović, Anđelko, Proizvodnja pristanka i pakiranje politike, Zagreb, Vjesnik , 19. listopad 2009.

[181]  Chomsky, Noam, Sustavi moći, Naklada Ljevak d.o.o., Zagreb, 2013. str. 36.

[182]  Vujić, Jure, Doba post-istine, Matica Hrvatska, Vijenac 627, Društvo, Zagreb, 15.03.2018.

[183]  Alvin Day, Etika u medijima: Primeri i kontraverze, str. 102.

[184]  Bauman, Zygmunt, Postmoderna etika, AGM, Zagreb, 2009., str. 44.

[185]  Crouch, Colin, Postdemokracija. Političke i poslovne elite u 21. stoljeću, Izvori, Zagreb, 2007.

[186]  Ivan Pavao II, Veritas Splendor. Sjaj istine, Kršćanska sadašnjost, Zagreb, 2008.

[187]  Grupp, Jeffrey, Korporatizam. Tajna vlada novog svjetskog poretka, TELEdisk, Zagreb, 2011., str. 153.

[188]  Orwell, George, 1984., Alfa, Zagreb,, 2008.

[189]  Huxley, Aldous, Vrli novi svijet, Izvori, Zagreb, 1998.

[190]  Grupp, Jeffrey, Korporatizam. Tajna vlada novog svjetskog poretka, str. 153.

[191]  Mainstream, eng. izraz označava masovne medije koji odražavaju prevladavajuća mišljenja. Noam Chomsky ih naziva elitnim korporativnim medijima koji uspostavljaju okvir unutar kojeg svi ostali djeluju, vidjeti ”Medija, propaganda, sistem”, Što čitaš?, Zagreb, 2006.

[192]  Alvin Day, Etika u medijima. Primeri i kontraverze, str.105.

[193]  „Fake News“, Lies and propaganda: How to Sort Fact from Fiction, Research Guides, University of Michigan, zadnji pristup 16.12.2018.

[194]  Issue Brief: Distinguishing Disinformation from Propaganda, Misinformation and „Fake News“, National Endowment for Democracy, October 17,2017, dostupno na, zadnji pristup 16.12.2018.

[195]  Fukuyama, Francis, Kraj povijesti i posljednji čovjek, Hrvatska sveučilišna naklada, Zagreb, 1994.

[196]  Hilary Clinton: The US is losing „an information war,, zadnji pristup 10.12.2018.

[198]  Prema Pablo Boczkowski: Has Election 2016 been a turning point for the influence of the news media, Nov 8, 2016; dostupno na; zadnji pristup 10.12.2018.

[199]  Aidan White: Fake News Facebook and Matters of Fact in the Post-Truth Era Ethics in the News EJN Report on Challenges for Journalism in the Post-truth Era, zadnji pristup 10.12.2018.

[200]  Američke političke elite, kao i europske, o Donaldu Trumpu i usponu europskih populističkih stranaka, uglavnom razmišljaju u kontekstu trenutne sistemske ”greške”. Po mišljenju autorice, jačanje konzervativnih i antisistemskih stranaka koje se protive daljnjem slabljenju nacionalnih suvereniteta, nekontroliranom priljevu migranata, te zalažu za obnovu zapadne tradicije i kulture, nezaustavljivo će oblikovat novi ideološko – politički spektar, kao i vrijednosni sustav u okcidentalnim demokracijama.

[201]  Jack, Xiong, The Fake News in 1990 that Propelled the U.S. into the First Gulf War, May 7.2018, dostupno na, zadnji pristup 16.12.2018.

[202]  Chomsky, Noam, Promašene države: Zlouporaba vlasti i napad na demokraciju, Naklada Ljevak, Zagreb, 2008.

[203]  Stuart Jeanne Bramhall, The Arab Spring: Made in the USA, dostupno na, zadnji pristup 16.12.2018.

[204]  Zolman, Florian, Media, Propaganda and the Politics of Intervention, New York: Peter Lang, 2017.

[205]  Klein, Naomi, Doktrina šoka. Uspon kapitalizma katastrofe, Grafički zavod Hrvatske, Zagreb, 2008, str. 318.-332.

[206]  Sinonim za atmosferu političkog progona neistomišljenika (komunista) kakvu je u razdoblju 1950. – 1954. U Sjedinjenim Državama pokrenuo senator McCarthy, podržan od strane tada najutjecajnijih medijskih trustova.

[209]  Cybersecurity: Paris Call of 12 November 2018 for Trust and Security in Cyberspace, dostupno na, zadnji pristup 16.12.2018.

[210]  vidjeti, zadnji pristup 16.12.2018.

[211]  Germany: Flawed Social Media Law,, zadnji pristup 14.12.2018.

[212]  Casey Newton, Inside Facebook's election war room, dostupno na, zadnji pristup 14.12.2018.

[214]  Elle Hunt, Disputed by multiple fact- chechers: Facebook rolls out new alert to combat fake news, Mar 22 2017,, zadnji pristup 10.12.2018.

[216]  Zgrabljić Rotar Nada, Medijska pismenost, medijski sadržaji i medijski utjecaji, Media Centar, Sarajevo, 2005., Dušan Reljić, Bukvar medijske pismenosti, Akademska knjiga, Beograd, 2018.

[217]  Warren Breed, Social Control in the Newsroom: A Functional Analysis, Social Forces 33(4), 1955, pp 332.

[218]  W. Lance Bennet, Toward a Theory of Press-State Relations in the United States. Journal of Communication, 40(2), 1990., pp103-125.

[219]  Zoltman izdvaja New York Times, Washington Post i Guardian.

[220]  Ferguson Thomas, Golden Rule: The Investment Theory of Party Competition and the Logic of Money Driven Political Systems, Chicago and London: University of Chicago Press, 1995.

[221]  Benjamin I. Page, Who Deliberates? Mass Media in Modern Democracy, Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1996.

[222]  McChesney, Robert, W. Digital Disconnect: How Capitalism is Turning the Internet Against Democracy New York, The New Press, 2013 prema Zollman Florian Fake news by design: Mainstream news media reporting and the manufacture of bloodbaths in Libya and Syria.



Alvin Day, Luis, Etika u medijima. Primeri i kontraverze, Media centar, Beograd, Plus, Beograd, 2004.

Barnays, Edward, Propaganda, Ammonite, Beograd, 2015.

Bauman, Zygmunt, Postmoderna etika, AGM, Zagreb, 2009.

Bennet W. Lance, Toward a Theory of Press-State Relations in the United States. Journal of Communication, 40 (2), 1990.

Boczkowski, Pablo, „Has Election 2016 been a turning point for the influence of the news media“, Nov 8, 2016;; zadnji pristup 10. 12. 2018.

Bramhall, Stuart Jeanne, „The Arab Spring: Made in the USA“,, zadnji pristup 10.12.2018.

Breed Warren, Social Control in the Newsroom: A Functional Analysis, Social Forces 33(4), 1955.

Chomsky, Noam, Promašene države. Zlouporaba vlasti i napad na demokraciju, Naklada Ljevak, Zagreb, 2008.

Chomsky, Noam, Sustavi moći, Naklada Ljevak d.o.o., Zagreb, 2013.

Crouch, Colin, Postdemokracija. Političke i poslovne elite u 21. stoljeću, Izvori, Zagreb, 2007.

Ferguson Thomas, Golden Rule: The Investment Theory of Party Competition and the Logic of Money Driven Political Systems, Chicago and London: University of Chicago Press, 1995.

Fukuyama, Francis, Kraj povijesti i posljednji čovjek, Hrvatska sveučilišna naklada, Zagreb, 1994.

Grupp, Jeffrey, Korporatizam. Tajna vlada novog svjetskog poretka, TELEdisk, Zagreb, 2011.

Habermas, Jürgen, The Structural transformation of the Public Sfere, Polity, Cambridge, 1989.

Huxley, Aldous, Vrli novi svijet, Izvori, Zagreb,1998.

Hunt, Elle, „Disputed by multiple fact - chechers: Facebook rolls out new alert to combat fake news“, Mar 22 2017,, zadnji pristup 10.12.2018.

Ivan Pavao II, Veritas Splendor. Sjaj istine, Kršćanska sadašnjost, Zagreb, 2008.

Klein, Naomi, Doktrina šoka. Uspon kapitalizma katastrofe, Grafički zavod Hrvatske, 2008.

McChesney, Robert, W. Digital Disconnect: How Capitalism is Turning the Internet Against Democracy , The New Press, New york, 2013.

Milardović, Anđelko, Proizvodnja pristanka i pakiranje politike, Zagreb, Vjesnik , 19. listopad 2009.

Orwell, George, 1984., Alfa, Zagreb, 2008.

Page, Benjamin I., Who Deliberates? Mass Media in Modern Democracy, Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1996.

Reljić Dušan, Bukvar medijske pismenosti, Akademska knjiga, Beograd, 2018.

Vujić, Jure, Doba post-istine, Matica Hrvatska, Vijenac 627, Društvo, Zagreb, 2018.

White, Aidan, „Fake News Facebook and Matters of Fact in the Post-Truth Era Ethics in the News EJN Report on Challenges for Journalism in the Post-truth Era, zadnji pristup 10.12.2018.

Zgrabljić Rotar Nada, Medijska pismenost, medijski sadržaji i medijski utjecaji, Media Centar, Sarajevo, 2005.

Zollman, Florian, Media, Propaganda and the Politics of Intervention, Peter Lang, US, 2017.

Zollman, Florian, „Fake news by design: Mainstream news media reporting and the manufacture of bloodbaths in Libya and Syria“, Mar 07, 2018,, zadnji pristup 10.12. 2018.


Internetski izvori:

France passes contraversial „fake news“ law, zadnji pristup 10.12.2018.

Cybersecurity: Paris Call of 12 November 2018 for Trust and Security in Cyberspace,, zadnji pristup 10.12.2018., zadnji pristup 16.12.2018.

Velika „borba za istinu“, zadnji pristup 10. 12.2018.

Issue Brief: Distinguishing Disinformation from Propaganda, Misinformation and „Fake News“, National Endowment for Democracy, October 17,2017, dostupno na, zadnji pristup 10.12.2008.

Fake News“, Lies and propaganda: How to Sort Fact from Fiction, Research Guides, University of Michigan, zadnji pristup 16.12.2018.

Final report of the High Level Expert Group on Fake News and Online Disinformation, EC, 12 March 2018


”Fake news” as a Political Tool of the Systemic Crisis in Liberal
Democracy and Corporate Media




The phenomenon of fake news and unverified information represents a serious challenge to modern media, especially online media where ethical relativism has become the accepted norm, and truth is often suppressed under commercial values. In 2016 the political establishment of the United States and the EU for the first time had to face the fact that the communication revolution has been speeding up the spread of lies and misinformation, and the dominant liberal system of social values uncritically supported by mainstream media has actually been losing supporters. Are fake news merely part of Russian propaganda and hybrid wars started with the aim of undermining the values of western democracies or are the most influential liberal media the main sources of fake and biased news? This work analyses the reasons why traditional media, even in their online form, have lost their crucial impact on creating public opinion and consequently on directing social processes.


Key words: fake news, propaganda, mainstream media, online media, liberal democratic values, systemic crisis.





 8(15)#22 2019

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Časopis je otvorenog pristupa, a ovo djelo je dano na korištenje pod licencom Creative Commons Imenovanje-Nekomercijalno 4.0 međunarodna.

UDK 004.031.42:791
Primljeno: 07.01.2019.



Tihoni Brčić

Sveučilište u Zagrebu, Akademija dramske umjetnosti
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Interaktivni film: Odgovor na pasivnost medija

Puni tekst: pdf (1917 KB), Hrvatski, Str. 2471 - 2483





Iako je film pasivni medij i unatoč preprekama kreativne, tehničke i financijske prirode, još prije pola stoljeća počelo se eksperimentirati s interaktivnošću. Gledateljima se postupno omogućilo odabiranje alternativnih ishoda radnje, utjecaj na razvoj likova, pa čak i sukreiranje sadržaja. Ovaj rad prati evoluciju interaktivnog filma u kinu, televiziji, kućnom videu, internetu i video instalaciji kroz četiri razdoblja: analogno, digitalno, simulacijsko i emulacijsko. Razmatra se i potencijal simbiotskog povezivanja filma s njegovom publikom.


Ključne riječi: interaktivni film, interaktivno kino, interaktivna televizija, interaktivnost, film, mediji.




Živimo u umreženom multimedijskom okruženju čija je glavna značajka interaktivnost. Jedan izuzetno popularan, izražajan i profitabilan medij- film, nikako da evoluira poprimanjem interaktivnih karakteristika. No, je li to zaista istina? Iako je film pasivni medij, u propitivanje interaktivnog odnosa s gledateljima zakoračio je još prije pola stoljeća. Izašao je iz proširenog filma, podvrste eksperimentalnog filma, a kao što mu naziv sugerira proširuje standardne uvjete prikazivanja i doživljaja filma, koristi nove tehnologije, koketira s instalacijom i performansom, a može prerasti i u sveobuhvatni filmski ambijent. Dvije karakteristike proširenog filma ključne za razvoj interaktivnog filma bile su propitivanje odnosa gledatelja s filmom i poticanje interaktivnosti.

Podlogu za razumijevanje tih karakteristika pružio je McLuhan u svojem razmišljanju o medijima. Hladnim medijem je smatrao onaj koji je oskudan podacima čime pruža manju stimulaciju ali iziskuje veću participaciju korisnika u nadopunjavanju i interpretaciji sadržaja. Vrući medij s više podataka nudi veću stimulaciju ali manju participaciju.[223] Interaktivni film može ponuditi podjednaku stimulaciju i participaciju. Možda zvuči kao trendovski dodatak poput uvođenja stereoskopske 3D slike ili mirisa u film, ali je daleko od toga. Ima potencijal povezati umjetničko djelo s njegovom publikom na simbiotsku razinu. Umjetnost se nekako kroz ljudsku povijest smatra nedodirljivim djelom autora koje publika može samo pasivno percipirati putem osjetila vida i sluha. Od svih devet umjetničkih polja (filmska, kazališna, glazbena, likovna, primijenjena, plesna umjetnost i umjetnost pokreta, dizajn, književnost i interdisciplinarno umjetničko polje) upravo film ima najveći potencijal aktivnog uključivanja publike u sam umjetnički rad. Naposljetku, film je toliko moćan da može promijeniti imidž država neovisno o njihovoj volji. U usporedbi s ostalim umjetnostima film je osobito moćan jer postiže psihološke i promidžbene učinke, ne samo na planu intelekta, već temeljno na planu emocija i vizualnog doživljaja.[224]

Da interaktivni koncept funkcionira u pasivnom mediju od kojeg se ne bi očekivala interaktivnost svjedoči fenomen tiskanih knjiga s višestrukim ishodima. U takvim interaktivnim knjigama radnja se račva, te ovisi o odlukama čitatelja na kojoj će strani nastaviti čitanje i koji od nekoliko mogućih završetaka će uslijediti. Koliko su takve knjige bile popularne pokazuje primjer serije knjiga Choose Your Own Adventure od Bantam Books koja se u razdoblju od 1979. do 1998. godine[225] prodala u preko 250 milijuna primjeraka na 38 jezika Kod filma je problem što se nakon kreativnog izazova smišljanja radnje kompleksnije nego inače, sve varijacije i ishodi moraju snimiti, te je neophodno riješiti niz tehničkih poteškoća u realizaciji interaktivnosti. Sve to uvelike povećava produkcijske troškove i čini cijeli poduhvat komercijalno diskutabilnim. Stoga interaktivni film gubi na filmičnosti, glumačke izvedbe i općenito produkcijska kvaliteta uglavnom su na niskoj razini.

Bit interaktivnog filma leži u utjecaju gledatelja na samo umjetničko djelo, on sudjeluje u njegovom stvaranju i stiče svojevrsno suautorstvo. Umjetnik  je i dalje primarni autor filma koji njegovim obogaćivanjem utječe na percepciju i interakciju gledatelja. Kako u nekim situacijama interaktivni film može izbjeći kontroli autora i postati potpuno djelo gledatelja, egoizam autora može stati na put realizaciji interaktivnih filmova. Iako filmska umjetnost počiva na tehnologiji, upravo je tehnologija jedan od tri bitna čimbenika koji osujećuju interaktivnost. Prvenstveno zahtijeva posebni hardver i/ili softver koji gledateljima omogućuje interakciju. Drugi čimbenik je kreativne prirode. Umjesto jednog samostalnog filma zaokružene narativnosti treba unutar jednog filma smisliti niz međusobno povezanih narativnih varijacija s različitim ali zadovoljavajućim ishodima. Treći čimbenik usko je povezan uz prva dva i odnosi se na spomenute visoke troškove proizvodnje interaktivnih filmova.


Interaktivni film u kinu

Za potrebe ovog rada predlažem podjelu evolucije interaktivnog filma kroz četiri karakteristična razdoblja: analogno, digitalno, simulacijsko i emulacijsko. Prvotno analogno razdoblje odnosi se na vrijeme kad je film fotokemijskim procesom bio sniman na plastičnu vrpcu i projektorom projiciran na platno. Ovo razdoblje pružilo je temeljne karakteristike vezane uz doživljaj filma kao što su kolektivni doživljaj i veliko platno. Metaforički gledano ovo razdoblje predstavlja fetalno stanje u kojem se gledatelj hrani sadržajem dok je obavijen kino dvoranom kao membranom maternice.

Prvim interaktivnim kino filmom smatra se čehoslovačka komedija Kinoautomat (Radúz Činčera, Ján Roháč, Vladimír Svitáček, Miroslav Horníček, 1967.). Prvi puta je prikazana u posebno kreiranom kinu čehoslovačkog paviljona na Svjetskoj izložbi 1967. u Montrealu u Kanadi. Sjedala su imala ugrađena crveni i zeleni gumb koji su gledateljima u devet ključnih trenutaka omogućavali izbor jednog od dva ponuđena ishoda radnje. Za vrijeme glasanja projekcija bi se zaustavila i moderatori bi na pozornici poticali gledatelje na glasanje. Radnja filma se nastavljala prema većinskim glasovima koji su bili prikazani uživo na rubovima kino platna a sistem od dva projektora omogućavao je puštanje filma s jednim ili drugim unaprijed snimljenim ishodom. Američki časopis The New Yorker proglasio je film zagarantiranim hitom na Svjetskoj izložbi i da bi trebalo izgraditi spomenik čovjeku koji je smislio tu ideju.[226] Hollywoodski filmski studiji bili su oduševljeni konceptom Kinoautomata i zainteresirani za njegovo licenciranje što je bila velika prilika za prodor interaktivnog filma u kino dvorane. Nažalost to se nije realiziralo zbog prava koja je država imala na film, te u tadašnjem socijalističkom režimu nije imala interesa za prodaju niti daljnji razvoj interaktivnog koncepta.[227]


Činčera Radúz, Roháč Ján, Svitáček Vladimír, Horníček Miroslav, Kinoautomat 1967.


Razvojem tehnologije postupno je evoluirao i interaktivni film. Tako je filmsku vrpcu počeo zamjenjivati LaserDisc optički medij koji je omogućio repetativno i praktično preskakanje na različita filmska poglavlja u bilo kojem trenutku. Bilo je pokušaja i s CD-Rom formatom čija kvaliteta nije bila zadovoljavajuća te miješanjem filma s video igrama. No, u video igrama je ipak prevladavao sam koncept igranja stavljajući filmski aspekt u drugi plan, pa se takvi uradci nisu baš smatrali interaktivnim filmom. Dolaskom digitalnog razdoblja film više ne počiva na filmskoj vrpci već na tvrdom disku računala ili je dostupan na cloud servisima putem interneta. To je omogućilo puno lakšu implementaciju interaktivnog sadržaja u kinima. Elektronske naprave za glasanje i brojanje glasova zamijenili su pametni telefoni i posebno pisani softveri koji su interaktivnost doveli na novu razinu.

U digitalnom razdoblju možemo govoriti o metaforičkom postnatalnom stanju gdje gledatelj napušta okvire maternice i istražuje svijet oko sebe. Interaktivnost se ne svodi samo na odabir ishoda radnje već gledatelj polagano postaje sudionikom. Primjerice, u njemačkom filmu strave Last Call (Milo, 2010.) gledatelj može telefonski komunicirati s protagonisticom i pomagati joj da pobjegne od ubojice koji ju je zatočio u napuštenom sanatoriju. Gledatelji pri ulasku u dvoranu moraju dati broj svojeg mobilnog telefona, koji se pohranjuje u posebnoj bazi podataka. Iz nje se randomizirano izvlači broj i zove gledatelja u trenutku kada i sama protagonistica koristi telefon da pozove pomoć. Poseban softver za prepoznavanje glasa pretvara razgovor gledatelja u komande i pušta odgovarajući prethodno snimljeni prizor stvarajući iluziju da se uživo odigrava dijalog između gledatelja i filmskog lika. Imerzija u film je upotpunjena završnom scenom gdje se ubojica odabranom gledatelju prijeteći obraća direktno preko telefona: “Sada si ti na redu. Imam tvoj broj telefona”.[228]


Milo, Last Call, 2010.


Dokufikcijski film Two Pink Lines (Brčić, 2016.) primjenjuje interaktivnost koristeći pametne telefone bez promjene infrastrukture kino dvorane i posebno pisanog softvera. Služe za skeniranje QR kodova koji se pojavljuju u filmu i kao tzv. sekundarni ekrani za reprodukciju dodatnog sadržaja. Aplikacije za skeniranje QR kodova uglavnom su već integrirane u operativni sustav ili popularne aplikacije pametnih telefona pa nema potrebe za dodatnom instalacijom niti pisanjem softvera. Two Pink Lines dokumentira trudnoću mlade majke i njezino nošenje s pretporođajnom depresijom. Kroz interaktivnost ne mijenja radnju, niti pruža nelinearno iskustvo gledanja, već pruža intimnije iskustvo. Beba koju protagonistica nosi prebacuje se s kino platna na sekundarni ekran pametnog telefona, ravno u krilo gledatelja. Dodatni segmenti prikazuju snimke bebe u maternici nastale tehnologijom 4D ultrazvuka, kronološki slijedeći njen razvoj i produbljujući vezu gledatelja i protagonistice. U sjedećem položaju telefon je blizu trbuha, pa stvara dojam ultrazvučnog pregleda gledatelja.


Brčić, Tihoni, Two Pink Lines, 2016.


Interaktivni film na kućnom videu

Dolaskom DVD-a i kasnije Blu-raya kao novih i naprednijih formata na tržištu kućnog videa, pojavila se mogućnost jednostavne adaptacije interaktivnih kino filmova i uvođenja dodatnog sadržaja. Mogli su raditi sve kao i LaserDisc, ali znatno praktičnije, brže, bešumnije i kvalitetnije. Interaktivnost se provodila daljinskim upravljačem a kasnije pametnim telefonom i tabletom. Nastavilo se s pokušajima da se film spoji s video igrom. Jedan od takvih primjera je Star Trek: Borg (James L. Conway, 1996.) koji ima prvoklasnu produkciju igranih prizora koji su oplemenjeni interaktivnim elementima. Omogućuje gledatelju da intervenira u radnju, pa čak i uči na vlastitim greškama. Ovaj interaktivni film službeno je izdan na DVD-Romu za PC i Macintosh računala na kojima se upravlja mišem i tipkovnicom, a samo u Japanu je izdan na DVD formatu i upravlja se daljinskim upravljačem. Interaktivnost na kućnom videu nikad nije zaživjela unatoč raznim nastojanjima, a jedan od razloga svakako je sistem upravljanja daljinskim upravljačem. U nekim trenucima vrlo je nepraktičan i s vremenskom odgodom, pogotovo primjerice u odnosu na kontroler za video igre, no video igre su ionako u interaktivnosti nedostižni konkurent interaktivnom filmu.

Gotovo uvijek se radi o niskobudžetnim filmovima koji se objavljuju direktno na videu, a izuzetak je bio horor Final Destination 3 (James Wong, 2006.). Radi se o kino filmu s budžetom od 30-ak milijuna dolara od kojih je skoro jedan milijun unaprijed namijenjen za interaktivno DVD izdanje pod nazivom Thrill Ride Edition.[229] Radnja prati adolescente koji slijedeći svoj predosjećaj izbjegnu smrt na rollercoasteru, ali ih smrt ipak počinje preuzimati jednog po jednog. Okosnica ove franšize su neobični načini na koji likovi smrtno stradaju, pa se na tome temelje i posebno snimljene alternativne scene. Osmislila ih je i snimila ista profesionalna filmska ekipa, a držane su u tajnosti za vrijeme kino eksploatacije. Tek na spomenutom DVD izdanju gledatelji su mogli vidjeti o čemu se radi, preuzimajući sudbine likova u svoje ruke. Na određenim mjestima u filmu radnja bi se zamrznula i pretopila u natpis koji nudi dvije vrste izbora koje gledatelj izabire daljinskim upravljačem. Radnja se tada nastavlja pokrećući određene segmente na DVD-u koji slijede unaprijed programirani niz račvanja prema dotičnom izboru. Mogućnost odabira utječe na to da likovi ili prežive kobne situacije ili na neki način poginu što može drastično promijeniti ishod filma.

Interakcija u filmu u kućnim video formatima uglavnom se svodi na odigravanje događaja kroz animirani segment poput video igre, odabiranje alternativnog ishoda ili na ubacivanje izbačenih scena. Potonje koristi Collector’s Edition verzija visokobudžetnog znanstveno-fantastičnog filma Prometheus (Ridley Scott, 2012.) na Blu-ray disku. Potrebno je na tablet ili pametni telefon instalirati posebnu aplikaciju koja se sinkronizira s Blu-ray diskom putem wi-fi veze, te ih koristiti kao upravljač i kao sekundarni ekran. Dodatni sadržaj pohranjen je na internetu i Blu-rayu. Uključuje statične materijale poput fotografija i knjige snimanja koji se za vrijeme gledanja filma na televizoru pojavljuju na sekundarnom ekranu u vrijeme kad se odnose na dotični prizor u filmu. Za vrijeme gledanja video zapisa na sekundarnom ekranu, film se privremeno automatski pauzira na Blu-ray playeru jer je nepraktično pratiti dva paralelna sadržaja na dva različita ekrana. Ovo je ujedno primjer jednog od razloga introdukcije interaktivnog filmskog sadržaja u kućnom videu, marketinške inicijative za poticanje prodaje. Naime, ovo Blu-ray izdanje jedinstveno je po tome što omogućuje gledanje filma s izbačenim scenama koje gledatelj pokretom ruke s ekrana tableta prebacuje na ekran televizora i u realnom vremenu prikazuje na predviđenim mjestima u filmu.

Negdje između interaktivnog kino filma i kućnog videa našla se i hibridna tehnologija CtrlMovie. Koristi ju i 20th Century Fox za razvoj svojeg interaktivnog filma s konkretnim budžetom i profesionalnom filmskom ekipom. Zanimljivo je da se radi o interaktivnoj ekranizaciji knjige s višestrukim ishodima iz već spomenute popularne serije Choose Your Own Adventure. Time se otvara mogućnost da i drugi filmski studiji počnu slijediti primjer, i tako skrenuti pozornost na ovaj još nedovoljno iskorišteni medij koji potiče višestruko gledanje filma radi drukčije radnje i ishoda uvjetovanih aktivnim sudjelovanjem gledatelja. Zahvaljujući razvoju i pristupačnosti tehnologije, tehnologije poput CtrlMovie danas mogu ponuditi komercijalne mogućnosti koje nadilaze kino eksploataciju. Uz kino, interaktivni film se može iskusiti i na kućnim uređajima poput osobnih računala, igraćih konzola, tableta, pametnih televizora i telefona. Mogućnost izbora grafički je predočena gumbima, gledatelji na pametnom telefonu mogu ponekad rekadrirati sliku pokretima prstiju i tako otkriti što se još nalazi u prostoru ili tipkati po pokretnim objektima u filmu da bi ih se aktiviralo. Sve je to u odnosu na prijašnje poduhvate znatno poboljšano - bez zastoja je, odnosno zamrzavanja radnje prilikom odabira ishoda, ima neprekidnu glazbu između skokova, te općenito ima bešumne prijelaze pri račvanju radnje. Gledatelji trebaju kolektivno djelovati putem posebne aplikacije na svojim telefonima u kinu ili individualno na svojem tabletu u vlastitom domu. Prvi dugometražni film koji je koristio tu tehnologiju je Late Shift (Tobias Weber, 2016.). Radnja prati studenta koji je prinuđen pridružiti se pljački aukcijske kuće u Londonu. Film sadrži preko 100 odluka koje vode prema jednom od sedam različitih završetaka.


Tobias Weber, Late Shift, 2016.


Interaktivni film na televiziji

Primjena interaktivnosti na televiziji još je rjeđe korištena. Svedena je na interakciju telefonom i daljinskim upravljačem, te u novije vrijeme internetom i pametnim uređajima. Primjerice, finska humoristička serija Sydän kierroksella (Mika Lumi Tuomola, 2006-2007.) omogućila je gledateljima interakciju telefonskim SMS porukama. Serija se bavila ljubavnom vezom 61-godišnje kabaretske pjevačice i 30-godišnje pop zvijezde. Gledatelji su mogli uživo utjecati na razvoj radnje, potičući razvoj ili destrukciju veze između glavnih likova. SMS poruke su bile ispisivane na televizijskom ekranu zajedno s grafički prikazom zahlađenja ili zagrijavanja u vezi što se iščitavalo iz pristiglih poruka. Gledatelji su odmah mogli čuti reakciju likova iz serije na poruke, te gledati njihov razvoj prema vlastitim komentarima i diskusijama. Svaka epizoda imala je oko 80 snimljenih scena i 850 naracija koje su omogućile niz varijacija. Poseban softver kontinuirano je analizirao SMS poruke i puštao odabrane scene, naraciju i grafiku u smislenom narativnom kontinuitetu na temelju ritma pojavljivanja i raspoloženja iščitanog iz ključnih riječi u porukama.[230]

Interaktivnost je nativno prisutna u najinteraktivnijem mediju – internetu. Stoga je zanimljivo vidjeti kako će interaktivni film prihvatiti sve popularnija streaming televizija, koja koristi Internet kao platformu za dostavljanje sadržaja. Radi toga ima veliki broj gledatelja u cijelom svijetu, te mogućnost utjecaja na prihvaćanje interaktivnog filma. Možemo uzeti za primjer Netflix, jednog od pružatelja videa na zahtjev, koji je u 2018. godini imao 137 milijuna pretplatnika.[231] Od 2017. godine počeo se diferencirati na tržištu ponudom interaktivnosti u svojem bogatom programu, i to vrlo mudro - na dječjem sadržaju. Djeca su po prirodi vrlo “interaktivna”, a suvremeni mediji daleko su od pasivnih kojima su bile izložene prijašnje generacije. Danas u vrlo ranoj dobi djeca odrastaju u interaktivnom okruženju igraćih konzola, tableta, pametnih telefona i televizora kojima se upravlja preko zaslona osjetljivih na dodir ili govorom. Puss in Book: Trapped in an Epic Tale, Minecraft: Story Mode, Stretch Armstrong: The Breakout i Buddy Thunderstruck: The Maybe Pile četiri su interaktivne epizode ovih animiranih serija za djecu koje je Netflix do sada producirao. Većina njih djeluje kao vrlo jednostavna video igra, ali zanimljivo je da su to bili samo eksperimenti za prvi kompleksni interaktivni projekt za odrasle.

Za taj poduhvat Netflix je morao tehnički modificirati i način na koji se dostavlja sadržaj – jer se u privremenu memoriju konstantno pohranjiuju dva internetska prijenosa (eng. stream) umjesto jednog. Obožavatelji cijenjene znanstveno-fantastične serije Black Mirror nagrađeni su posebnim interaktivnim specijalom Bandersnatch (David Slade, 2018.) koji gledatelju ne daje samo kontrolu nad razvojem radnje već i samim protagonistom. Radnja je ionako bila pogodna za interaktivnu adaptaciju budući da prati programera koji počinje propitivati realnost i svoj razum kad novelu s višestrukim ishodima krene pretvarati u video igru. Za ovaj specijal čije je prosječno trajanje oko 90 minuta snimljeno je preko 5 sati materijala, koji vode prema barem jedanaest različitih završetaka. Ukoliko gledatelj želi pasivno odgledati epizodu ili nema kompatibilni uređaj pušta se linearna epizoda bez opcija odabira. Inače, postoji preko bilijun jedinstvenih permutacija priče! Sve kontrolira posebno pisani softver, čime se između ostalog riješio i problem zastranjivanja od glavne radnje. Sistemom petlje gledatelju se omogućilo vraćanje u glavni slijed priče, što je nekad izravno ukorporirano i u samu radnju.[232] Bandersnatch je izvrstan primjer kreativnih mogućnosti interaktivnog filma i bez interaktivnog segmenta jednostavno ne može biti potpuno djelo.


Interaktivni film na internetu

U interaktivnom okruženju interneta koje može pružiti bogato audio-vizualno iskustvo i gotovo nepresušan izvor informacija veliki potencijal ima dokumentarni film. Film Inside Disaster Haiti (Nadine Pequeneza, 2010.) posjeduje interaktivnu verziju pod nazivom Simulation: Inside the Haiti Earthquake, koja omogućuje doživljaj potresa u Haitiju iz perspektive preživjele osobe, humanitarnog djelatnika ili novinara. Kroz niz video snimaka, fotografija i informativnih natpisa, vođen naratorom i osobnim izborima, gledatelj dobiva zaista intimno imerzivno iskustvo. I kraće forme poput glazbenih spotova mogu kreativno koristiti internet pretvarajući gledatelje u prave umjetnike. The Johnny Cash Project (Chris Milk, 2010.) zorno prikazuje u kojem bi smjeru budućnost kolektivne interaktivne umjetnosti mogla ići. Kroz službeni internetski portal dostupni su grafički alati kojima sudionici daju hommage Johnnyju Cashu crtanjem pojedinih sličica glazbenog spota Ain’t No Grave. Sličice su spojene u nizu i pri gledanju spota postaju “živi, pokretni i uvijek promjenjiv portret”[233] ovog glazbenika. Zabilježen je i proces crtanja svake pojedinačne sličice, pa se može po želji gledati kao samostalna autorska animacija gledatelja.


Interaktivni film u instalaciji

Uz kino, televiziju, kućni video i internet, instalacija također može koristiti interaktivni film, te nudi vjerojatno najbolji uvid u kojem smjeru se dalje može razvijati. To najviše dolazi do izražaja u instalacijama koje koriste film, video ili kompjutersku animaciju. Instalacija Obsession (Pia Tikka, 2005.) temelji se na podsvjesnoj interakciji gledatelja i filma. U filmu se majka i kćer na različite načine nose s majčinom trudnoćom nakon traumatičnog silovanja. Do pet gledatelja je smješteno na rotirajućim sjedalima koja im omogućuju gledanje jednog od četiri platna s različitim scenama. Poseban softver montira film u realnom vremenu prema povratnoj informaciji gledateljevih psihofizičkih reakcija poput usmjerenosti pogleda, kucanja srca, elektrodermalne aktivnosti i emotivne stimuliranosti koje bilježe bio-senzori instalirani u sjedalima. Koristi se unaprijed snimljen filmski materijal, od kojih svaki kadar ima dodijeljeno 150 emotivnih karakteristika koje se grupiraju po principu sličnosti.[234]


Tikka, Pia, Obsession, 2005.


Instalacija Wave UFO (Mariko Mori, 2003.) ide korak dalje i spojem umjetnosti i neuroznanosti omogućuje posjetiteljima kolektivno stvaranje filma u realnom vremenu vlastitim moždanim valovima. Doduše, radi se o unaprijed programiranim apstraktnim grafičkim oblicima koje je oslikala autorica, a narativnost ne postoji već se svodi na težnju ka kozmičkoj povezanosti. Po troje posjetitelja je smješteno u kapsulu koja podsjeća na NLO i svi su spojeni s bio-senzorima koji im očitavaju moždane valove. Softver ih u realnom vremenu interpretira u grafičke oblike koji se projiciraju na zakrivljenom stropu kapsule. Alfa valovi opuštenog stanja predstavljeni su plavom, beta valovi budnog stanja ružičastom, a teta valovi snolikog stanja žutom bojom. Tek kad su moždani valovi svih troje posjetitelja u sinkronicitetu dolazi do ciljanog ishoda ovog sedmominutnog “filma” - harmoničnih sferičnih oblika koji se zbližavaju i okružuju prstenom manjih svjetlećih sfera koje predstavljaju povezanost misli.[235]


Mori, Mariko, Wave UFO, 2003.



Wave UFO pokazuje vrhunac evolucije filma, koji davanjem interaktivnosti može gledatelja dovesti ne samo u koautorski, već u autorski odnos s umjetničkim djelom i to na cerebralnoj i transcendentalnoj razini. Nakon analognog i digitalnog razdoblja filma, počeli smo polako ulaziti u simulacijsko razdoblje. Ovdje je gledatelj u metaforički zrelom stanju i postaje kreatorom svijeta oko sebe. Realizacija simulacijskog razdoblja leži u kombinaciji nekoliko glavnih faktora. Simbioza tehnologija filmskog stvaralaštva, miješane stvarnosti i video igara neki su od njih. Naime, video igre filmičnošću i fotorealističnošću sve više nalikuju na igrane filmove i vice versa - filmovi zbog primjene računalne grafike sve više nalikuju na video igre. Zahvaljujući fotorealizmu vizualnih efekata, stapanju grafike s filmskom gramatikom izlaganja i svakodnevnoj eksponiranosti publike grafici, film je na putu da sam postane filmska grafika.[236] Tehnologija miješane stvarnosti može poslužiti kao spojnica između stvarnog svijeta gledatelja i virtualnog svijeta filma. U nekom trenutku će način generiranja sadržaja u realnom vremenu i ishodi račvanja postati previše kompleksni da bi ih provodio čovjek. Neminovno je uvođenje artificijelne inteligencije kao sistema izvođenja kompleksne interaktivnosti u kombinaciji sa sofisticiranim uređajima koji koriste individualne psihofizičke reakcije gledatelja u manipuliranju ili kreiranju filma.

Završno razdoblje evolucije filma smatram emulacijskim razdobljem. U njemu film više nema poveznicu s filmom kao medijem kojeg poznajemo. Mutacijom u multiosjetilne, sveobuhvatne okoline koje su nerazlučive od stvarnosti može postati svojevrsni virtualni simulakrum. Znanstvenik Frank J. Tipler dao je i teoretsku podlogu za realizaciju emulacijskog razdoblja u konceptu Omega point. Smatra da se korištenjem beskonačnog izvora energije pri kolapsu svemira može postići beskonačna emulacija svih mogućih stanja, pa i omnipotencija. Gledajući ipak u nešto bližu budućnost, Holodeck kao fiktivni koncept populariziran u znanstveno-fantastičnoj seriji Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987-1994.), djeluje kao dostižniji koncept emulirane okoline. Temelji se na fiktivnoj tehnologiji energetskih polja, holograma, vučnih zraka i replikatora materije, koji sudioniku omogućuju interakciju s emuliranim svjetovima nerazlučivim od stvarnosti. Iako se još uvijek smatra svetim gralom, barem pruža nadu da je interaktivni film zapravo još u embrionalnoj fazi.


[223]  Marshal McLuhan, Razumijevanje medija, Golden marketing-Tehnička knjiga, Zagreb, 2018., str. 25.

[224]  Božo Skoko, Tihoni Brčić, Dejan Gluvačević, Uloga igranog filma u brendiranju država, regija i gradova, Međunarodne studije, god. 12, br. 3/4, 2012., str. 13.

[225]  Sally Lodge “Chooseco Embarks on Its Own Adventure”, Pristup: 22. prosinac 2018.

[226]  Alena Činčerová “Kinoautomat”, Pristup: 22. prosinac 2018.

[227]  Ian Willoughby “Groundbreaking Czechoslovak interactive film system revived 40 years later”, Pristup: 22. prosinac 2018.

[228]  “13th Street – Last Call (The First Interactive Horror Film)”, Pristup: 22. prosinac 2018.

[229]  Evan Jacobs “Final Destination 3 to Be Released In A Special 'Thrill Ride' Version”, Pristup: 22. prosinac 2018.

[230]  “Accidental Lovers”, Pristup: 22. prosinac 2018.

[231]  “Number of Netflix streaming subscribers worldwide from 3rd quarter 2011 to 3rd quarter 2018 (in millions)”, Pristup: 29. prosinac 2018.

[232]  Janko Roettgers “Netflix Takes Interactive Storytelling to the Next Level With ‘Black Mirror: Bandersnatch’”, Pristup: 30. prosinac 2018.

[233]  “The Johnny Cash Project”, Pristup: 27. prosinac 2018.

[234]  “obsession - enactive cinema installation”,!obsession-enactive-installation/c1rlh Pristup: 22. prosinac 2018.

[235]  “Your thoughts come to life in Mariko Mori’s UFO”, Pristup: 25. prosinac 2018.

[236]  Tihoni Brčić, Međusobni utjecaj filmske grafike u američkim igranim i dokumentarnim filmovima 21. stoljeća kao predložak za filmsku grafiku dokufikcijkskog filma ‘Two Pink Lines’, doktorski rad, Sveučilište u Zagrebu, Akademija likovnih umjetnosti, Zagreb 2015., str. 118.


Interactive Movie: A response to Passivity of the Medium




Even though the film is a passive medium and despite the obstacles of creative, technical and financial nature, experimenting with the interactivity started half a century ago. The audience was gradually enabled to choose alternative outcomes, influence the development of characters, and even co-create the content. This work follows the evolution of interactivity in cinema, television, home video, internet and video installation through four periods: analogue, digital, simulation and emulation. It also reviews the potential of symbiotic link between film and the audience.


Key words: interactive film, interactive cinema, interactive television, interactivity, movies, media.