Keeping Distance. Notes on Video-Mediated Communication During the Covid-19 Pandemic

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The Covid-19 pandemic has significantly changed communication practices, as physical proximity has been curtailed in order to deal with a global pandemic. For many, video-mediated communication has replaced face-to-face meetings, as work, education and leisure activities have been moved online. While video-mediated communication has a longer history, we are witnessing an unprecedented scale and scope of video-mediated interactions. These affect established ecologies of social interaction, and participants need to learn and negotiate novel stocks of knowledge for appropriate ways of being together. While in public discussions many lament the lack of face-to-face interactions with those dear to us, it is argued that video-mediated communication tends to socially sort our interactions towards those we already know, or towards those who are introduced to us via trusted intermediaries: it is much less amenable to the unexpected, and hence to the valuing of diversity in our social encounters.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)161-175
Journal21: Inquiries into Art, History and the Visual
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2021
Publication typeB1 Article in a scientific magazine


  • Screens; Social Sorting; Proxemics; Social Interaction


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