newspaperThis image more-or-less sums up where I am starting with my new project tomorrow…

 

Last week I was on the tube and the woman sat next to me, in a genuine manner, asked if she could turn the page of her news paper… had I finished reading it!?

 

It is such a bad habit of mine. I read EVERYTHING – usually over someone’s shoulder. I listen to conversations on public transport and make up fictional narratives for the people without turning round to look at them. Usually, both of these activities are just ways of entertaining myself, but it has got me thinking… I don’t pick up the London Newspapers on my way to work, yet I always know what’s in them and can participate in a conversation, based on Rihanna, in the staff room because of it. 

 

How do we form common knowledge, common experience, opinions, an understanding of ‘what’s hot and what’s not’; I don’t have a choice but to participate because I take it all in involuntarily. 

 

A police notice in a tube station has stuck with me recently “If you’re reading this then you are on our beat.”, the point being that we all are, because we automatically read when words are in front of us. We take it in – it might not stick, we might not care, but we’ve read it. 

 

Where does our information come from? How much do we participate in society, often without noticing that we are doing it? There are a few other issues that I am trying to work out at the moment to do with this project. But for tomorrow – I just want to see if people will read what’s inside my newspaper.

 

I really want to know / or get a feel for how people respond to knowing that they are supposed to be reading my newspaper. Does it make you think about the information that we take in? The way in which we receive our information? How does it feel – a spontaneous performance that no-one else can see. An involuntary participant.

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