Holding Hands through Machines Made to Chop Off Hands

Creating connections between precarious AI workers to build unions and collaborative art.

The AIs we use are trained on datasets labelled by precarious workers. Platforms like MTurk offer contractors “people as software components”. This atomisation allows organisations to make billions from €2-an-hour labour of people with no other option.

Holding Hands intervenes in these digital platforms to create connections; connections between workers and connections to contractors, strands of intimacy that may grow and eventually subvert the basis of these platforms.

The methodology is based on Intimate Art, a framework that Rayén Jara Mitrovich has developed that uses art and activism to create spaces of intimacy. The project adapts these ideas to digital spaces, creating connections where the software is built to eliminate them.

Through making tasks in the platform MTurk, we create new relationships between Turkers and contractors. These experiments will grow into methodologies and digital tools.

Can we take over these spaces to create collaborative art? Build unions? Make friendships?

This project begins by building relations with Turkers, codesigning and creating tasks for building connections. Through an iterative process, we will work with collaborators to build outputs that could end up being digital tools, an exhibition, a political campaign or a union.

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