Seven on Seven

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Seven on Seven
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Jacob Appelbaum presents "Panda to Panda", a collaboration between Ai WeiWei and Jacob Appelbaum – documented by Laura Poitras.
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so it can go
in the while and so
thanks so much and I'm sorry
that I'm not I away and I know that that's why all of your here and so thank you to everyone that stain even though he's not going to come up and IAEA had the recent pleasure of being able to participate in an event put on by rise on which is part of a new museum in New York City and they have an event called 7 on 7 and the idea is to pair of 7 technologists with 7 artists and I think this is a pretty interesting frame for creating some art and in this case since it takes place in the United States and I was a little hesitant to accept for a number of reasons and 1 of which is that in about a week you will be the 2 year anniversary of me being in a basically exile in Europe have not gone back to the United States precisely because of the WikiLeaks grand jury and it is the case that the US government's political oppression of myself and other people involved in WikiLeaks has created constraints let's say and those conditions of constraints meant that going to New York City it was really not an option and the people from Rizam understood this so rather what they did is they said well you know would like to pair you up with similar has some constraints to in this case he's a Chinese artists sons interesting our tell me more about them and they said what he he does never password he can't leave China as a cocaine sends interesting in his name is our awareness that OK sounds interesting I don't know a lot about this person and that it turns out I We way for those of you that don't know is a little bit like the Andy Warhol of China but really is 1 of those great living artists and you know I am not a particularly culture person I guess so I missed that so I accepted the invitation without realizing what an incredible experience it would
be with with thinking it would just be I'm minute meet some guy in China and we're gonna make some are together whatever that looks like and I really don't like the frame of our technology versus
artists I think that's a really strange they the pairing up and so I had some ideas which were actually not about the Internet as we think of the internet but about the internet in terms of how we think of relationships and human beings side and 1 makes some some sort of old people audiences start ups I don't wanna make a start party set in 1 major thing that was
meant to be a start up or there was some sort of flashy website on even really like the World Wide
Web the Internet is more than the world wide web and the internet in my view is that a great expressions of humans connecting with each other and that happens with TCP IP but it actually also happens without TCP IP it happens hopefully in some really great ways without having the internet involved in the traditional sense at all I think that's 6 is that you and I can do this and I thank got off of had a heart attack the spondin which is going to show up so this but this art project was really strange because for the 1st few days we were locked in Ai Weiwei's compound to basically come and spending time with him we we get to see him in his hotel where he was staying and inserted to dawn on me that I actually had no idea what I was doing in China had no idea who this artist was and so we just sort of talked and we met and we spoke to and we started to talk about our experience was that state oppression in particular and it turns out we have like some common experiences and it was really very difficult and to make matters stranger Laura Poitras came and choose the director of some of you know from the film Citizen for and she really amazing and I think
maybe but I'm not sure the way where it was very fond of her from the get-go let's say and
so we have a really strange dynamic the 3 of us their invasion it was very good and Laura started to film and she started to spend some time but basically just sort of doing the thing that Laura does which is documenting where everyone feels very comfortable and we talked and we we challenged her
she she was especially challenged by way way with regard to reductions of the Snowden documents and that put the 3 of us in a really interesting debates our way we're actually films most of that which uh that was really interesting I was really a
turn-around moment for I spent 5 years working with Laura and never really has anyone ever turned camera Lauren at 5 years and we we did that and and he documents absolutely everything so we were going to the gym in the morning to work out I think it's really important like from you know from mental fitness in the physical fitness and Weiwei agrees but way way also livestreams streams going to the gym and so he filmed me doing push-ups in the gym was very
tired and and uh so that the you know 500 thousand people
the readers Instagram feed give cometary I need to keep my chin up I do push-ups and so that was the set up for going to his compound in working and I what I wanna show and I think we're initial right now is a film that Laura made about this are commissioned by 7 out of 7 by 7 Bruzzone and the new museum and so I I I would appreciate it if no 1 leaks is but I know how this works so it's mostly just that we hope that we can get it out to a wider audience but you know what if it leaks that so goes and we are entropy after all so this is a film by law and this is the 1st time it's being seen widely in public are there was 1 previous version of this film which was shown at the actual opening the rise of opening and so without further adieu adieu so it'll be a video and it's going to sit back and watch it with your time
uh move in the room
on and on and on and
on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on the uh
move around the room
on the surface of the of the the the it on the and all of the development of the world look for right to the surveillance of me the of the and you know the the and all that
kind of all the the on those known to for all of the and here we need to know for the most part and I should mention that it should for what the means that none of this is not the right to the end of it it's all about the me in not for you and me and I mean this is 1 of the most of all the points on the part of of the of In this case of the logic the this a of other things on the part of the so this was during the plants that they use it for propaganda deception last message in pushing stories area available and the psychological manipulation this is the that caller fullback inside the facts and from the head of the year and from the fact that the book of the use of the user and the reason is that that the period activity and that this the this is not this is not something which is not the only thing we talk to the heart of this
where the journalists involved in and technologies for dinner sigh of since the whole lot lot has information of the blood and usually about 1 of the practices the water in the century and 1 of the things that have I you look at this look at the you this is another
actually targeted facilitator of such as the on
or and
that you not only about the form that we know the the of In my don't remove the the the the set with the only about half of the text the
who the the
effect of class the that I did so this time the on and is in all question in the 1 here that's on on so the also and this happens sometimes this on and the this always cool saunters military time based on uniforms standing 80 centimeters away in front of me 24 hours a day so that in the room like this they're all the all the standing
wave centimeters away from me the call of the current always look at me and of emotion this yeah yeah yeah this is the condition of the hidden
agenda but given people we're sort of show how it can be trying he to be a and here are your notes someone but with the truth is that most of the time I have had that and I have had a kernel and then you might have made was that you that you want and industry that many different places we can sort of like a distributed back we keep 1 year and we send 1 to different places and makes
impossible to destroy the information without destroying all 20 of them and the safest when the safest places to put these things as a museum on a gallery where it's so as an object of detected in the set them 1 of them I don't know
the and and
the functional can I have a disk
the work because and on get off the
airplane and you walked on the jet where in my case there were people waiting at the jet where didn't take me then but I walked to the customs
lines and that the Customs test the flag me and turn around a little yellow light can and took me away downstairs the for later them passed a new word
can observation post at 1 point a mirrored room the door open and you could hear display conversation break before the door closed subsets so that to the terrorist looks like a stage there was uh taken into another room and then kind of took up some of my close but not all of them and pushing up against a wall 1 officer and grab my
wrists held means the wall or another 1 status fingers dangerously close to being inside of me and then they put me in interrogation room and they took turns asking a lot of questions about Wikileaks and eventually and at some point someone walked into the room His clearly together work with computers this should give you give us the passage your computer to your hard evidence of it I have 1 more give us the passive your heart of nationalist that don't have a hard time
like computers little he mean you don't have a harder and we're still you know the thing about being really good with it leverages the onto to get really good with computers 1 of the more the the the the in the the the
the all
good and that the more
more more than in the or the uh of of the of the of the
lumen of the of the of
the of the room and
then you can go on and on and on the right and and and we
we have a weird at yeah the I where where and I want to thank you Sir Harrison with 1 of the members
for saving Edward Snowden's life that uh there
they're naturally thinks that it's clear that with
others person right here we wouldn't be having these discussions and this Misaki's would not exist and if it was not presenters and if it was not for June Asuncion would you use and Edward Snowden's having our world would be a much different place and so we will not discuss the result it was important to 20 these vendors and set and so on number of people using human networks because resistance does not have to come just from the internet resistance comes from our hearts and we can use our friends to do amazing things if we apply ourselves and we want to make sure that we would be able to share so we call this project PDP or appended to and
and I should explain something which is a little contradictory nature which is that in China
Panda is what you call a secret agent which you called undercover cop he's a panda there say so tender depend
is or attempts bodily to think people who helped make this conversation possible but also to make it impossible for people to stop us from having this conversation thank
you very much you
have to the only a couple of minutes so I'll let me say I can have
1 or 2 questions for Jacob from anybody of frontier was good questions rejected totally overwhelmed question the fact there's a
question about it I'll try to make my way there'll and the 1st thing is part of it was really interesting and I'm currently based in Beijing as journalists and if you look at Canada the bubble of draw this super take if you look at the bubble of people look at China and there was a lot of criticism of the left in a lot of people wondering if you had a way way fault that all about how this known revelations to a certain extent gave small legitimacy to Chinese surveillance and the Chinese
state was kind of turning this around in a lot of people were saying look at how terrible the
states are they may be even worse than China and suddenly China was being all this Chinese states seem to be in a position where they actually look much better than before the snow revelations that may be true in relative terms but not necessarily in absolute terms across the
situation in China hasn't really changed so I would be interested in what you think about this and if you to talk about
this at all share of them of course where and I did talk a great deal about
this on 1 of the days when we were working the 1st day we were in a studio working the police requested a lunch with them and if you've ever had a police officer request for lunch with you you know that usually say no is not an option it's not a request so where we went and he was really visibly shaken after this I mean it was a 2 hour lunch we continue to work what he was away and it was obvious that fuck them up I mean my particular experience with this was seeing all of a person who was in a similar position to actually things a single or go through after she went through a particularly brutal interrogation and things that I myself of experience where I was definitely ask things that I wish that I hadn't been asked and we really connected about actually after this happened we talked about authoritarianism in China and particularly in networked authoritarianism I told my view about the tibetan genocide for example it's quite clear that China is an authoritarian state and it's also quite clear that some of the scariest things about China are the things that you don't see so for example I sell online data doesn't feel like an oppressive place and this is an important distinction there's there's a lot of demonization of China where people ImageNet to be like a Maoist story where there is a policeman with a truncheon who's going to hit you every 5 minutes and that's the case for some people in China but the majority of the people in China do not have that direct experience instead the an invisible authoritarianism networked authoritarianism where all of the things that they do are part of the Golden Shield Project or all the things they do online are going into analytics systems not so differently from other analytic systems in fact Cisco even gave a presentation in which they tried to sell the Chinese government this kind of networking equipment specifically to track down religious minority groups and then and those religious minority groups tried to sue in the United States about it so that the authoritarianism of the Chinese state is electronic an invisible for many people so for example there's surveillance cameras completely surrounding Weiwei's compound which we hope he hung landed on my general inclination with surveillance cameras is to play a game of CAM over and for those of you that don't know it's where you smash the cameras and then upload videos anonymously to YouTube to collect points don't forget to use store and so on the in China his view was
that you shouldn't provoke so he put instead of just lanterns to signify that the cameras were there and I think it's very clear for example that a country that has mobile
death events but there is something deeply wrong about that culture and what we we was facing is also deeply wrong and for example we does not have a passport and he is held in a perpetual state of terror this is my observation it's not what he said he's very discreet about the things that he said and he resorts to self-censorship like many people do actually and that self-censorship is very overwhelming and very powerful and it causes him to have a veil you know don't know him obviously but but he has a very and you can see the veil and after the interrogation the veil was lifted up for a brief period of time you could see just the raw humanity that was pulled out by this experience of explaining how embarrassed they were you know that he did never pass for and he's obviously a good guy and you know she doesn't mean to cause trouble and this just doesn't make any sense to them why he doesn't have a sparse for back and they're gonna work on getting his passport back so they have this character and
of course the authoritarian is stick is everywhere and of course we
didn't miss that you know the hotel or did not of crypto on the cell phone networks it's very obvious the surveillance was happening it's also clear that if you come as a person of privilege from the West would save telecom SIM card and a follow-on to China you bypass most of the censorship because the connection is told back to Germany so it's an effective circumvention techniques I use that technique specifically because I wanted to see if it would work at all there are many other connections hotel connection had a different kind of filtering and again this is another conception which is there's this great wall around China and its impenetrable but actually it's not it is the case that this wall that exist there is actually a series of little walls little webs little bureaucratic cracks actually and people get caught up in them and so it's very obvious to me that there is some deeply fundamentally unsettling things it's also clear that it requires exploration and it requires people actually traveling there and a lot of the people that are concerned about China some of them are actually just fucking racist and I think it's important to call that out there's a lot to criticize about China but we should not give in to some of the petty racist better simply scaremongering Xena followed people there are a lot of those people around the world have
a very much higher so you have to have a very great minds of together how you only have another
torque coming up in a minute so that's about makers fair in Berlin uh something
totally different but stick around and learn more about the makers fair in Berlin and thank you very much