GRECS (Grup de Recerca sobre Exclusió i Control Socials), OVQ
2012. Spain. vo English, Arabic. s Spanish. 65’   on-line

The Grup de Recerca sobre Exclusió i Control Social (GRECS) and the Observatori de la Vida Quotidiana (OVQ), which are collaborating on the project “Strong Squares: the political beating of the heart of the city" present an intervention that takes participants on a documentary journey through the promised world of the information "freedom" that the Internet puts within our reach. In the tumultuous Arab social context of 2011, the Net emerged as one of most crucial tools for spreading information about the popular uprisings in different countries in the region. A year later, if we want to go back and follow the trail of those revolts, we simply type a keyword into a search engine and we are faced with millions of possibilities. But beyond this initial avalanche of data, what kind of information can we glean from this noisy, slippery magma? In this intervention we will explore how collective memory (and also forgetting) is shaped in a context such as this, through a search focusing on two uprisings that occurred almost simultaneously: the revolution in Cairo’s Tahrir Sqare, which received strong media coverage, and the citizen uprising in Tahrir Square, Baghdad, which was silenced in the press. By following this dual path, we will be able to experience the potential autonomy of the virtual world as a source of information independent of the mainstream media, and to consider the limitations of the Net as a scenario of and for social conflict. GRECS Research Group on Social Exclusion and Control. An interdisciplinary, international group of researchers that promotes critical reflection around the issues of social exclusion and control, based at the University of Barcelona. OVQ: Observatory of Everyday Life. An assembly-based organisation of social researchers and visual arts professionals that carries out research on aspects of contemporary social life on the streets.