UnionDocs is excited to present a night of diverse media that ask questions about ownership, aesthetics, and consumption of a central feature of the internet: the domain name. With the foundations of the internet shifting below us, we wanted to host a conversation about the economy and consumption of this intangible form of real estate. Come for a screening of G. Anthony Svatek’s new documentary film .TV, a listening of of StartUp’s episode “The Domain King,” and Brian McMullen’s zine Still Not Dotcoms.
Thursday, Feb 8 at 7:30 pm
Who Owns Your Domain?
Screening to be followed by discussion with G. Anthony Svatek, Amy Standen & Andrew Leland
22 min., 2017
The much sought-after, two-letter web domain suffix of the title is examined as both a form of capital and an emblem of a country on the brink of a climate-induced catastrophe in this simultaneously humorous and illuminating essay film centered on the environmentally contentious Pacific Islands of Tuvalu.
The Domain King
29 min., 2017
Reporter Amy Standen brings us the story of Rick Schwartz, who earned the title “Domain King” by building a portfolio of dot com web addresses worth millions. But why is a “.com” address worth so much in the first place? And why doesn’t Gimlet own “gimlet.com”?
Still Not Dotcoms
Brian McMullen’s foray into the land of unclaimed domain names began when he published a poem titled “Stillnot Dotcoms” in his college dorm’s literary magazine. Fifteen years later he revived the project on Twitter using the hashtag #StillNotDotcoms, and more recently he adapted these stray domain names for an episode of The Organist podcast from KCRW and McSweeney’s and in zine form.
G. Anthony Svatek makes nonfiction films that examine humans’ relationship with natural and urban environments. Having grown up at the foot of the Austrian Alps, Anthony is deeply awed by the living world, landscapes, and the way people’s awareness of nature is changing through our increasingly techno-urban experiences. Amongst other venues, his work has been shown at the New York Film Festival, International Film Festival Rotterdam, Edinburgh International Film Festival, Ann Arbor Film Festival, Big Sky Documentary Film Festival, and DOCNYC. He’s received grants and support from the New York State Council on the Arts and the Austrian Cultural Forum New York. Anthony collaborated with filmmaker Jessica Oreck at Myriapod Productions for several years and has staffed at the Flaherty International Film Seminar. He currently serves as board member at The Film-Makers’ Cooperative / New American Cinema Group, freelances at BBC World, and has been a devoted volunteer at the American Museum of Natural History. Anthony is based in New York City.
Amy Standen is a reporter and host for StartUp, from gimletmedia.com
Andrew Leland hosts and produces the Organist, an arts-and-culture podcast from KCRW and the Believer magazine. He’s been an editor of the Believer since 2003 and has edited books for McSweeney’s, Vintage, Chronicle and elsewhere. His writing has appeared in McSweeney’s Quarterly, the San Francisco Chronicle, BOMB magazine, the catalog for the 2014 Whitney Biennial and elsewhere. He was an editor in residence at the Oakland Museum of California from 2011–12. He’s written or produced audio for Slate magazine’s Panoply network, Detour.com, City Arts and Lectures, and HowSound, among others. He’s taught writing, radio and digital storytelling at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, the University of Missouri, the Banff Centre and Transom.