Deep Lab was founded to examine how privacy, security, surveillance, anonymity, and large-scale data aggregation are problematized in the arts and society. The Deep Lab is an all women research collaborative who are an international group of new-media artists, information designers, data scientists, software engineers, hackers, writers, journalists and theoreticians. We are engaged in ongoing critical assessments of contemporary digital culture by utilizing code and culture. Members include women such as: Ingrid Burrington, Researcher/Artist, Director of metadata for the Guardian, Kate Crawford, Principal Researcher Microsoft Research, Visiting Professor MIT, Julia Kaganskiy, NEWInc Director New Museum, NYC, Jillian York, EFF and Runa Sandvik, Privacy/Security Researcher, Tor Project.
The feedback system built into digital networks necessitates the sharing of information. A problem arises, however, when the distribution of this information conflicts with the notion of scarcity—a core ideological component of the value of cultural objects. Since the principles of global capitalism and government determine value based on data, we are left with a fundamental friction in the distribution and creation of culture or research through digital networks. Deep Lab's research focuses on this contradiction by exploring new modes of interaction.
Pushing beyond the boundaries of ego and affiliation, Deep Lab members may choose to protect their identity at any point through anonymity. Doing so allows group members to remain self-reflexive. In order to pursue experimental research and make cultural contributions sustainable, practices of anonymity lend members an authoritative, collective voice unencumbered by individual fear.