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Physicality and distance is quashed in exchange for immediacy; distance between sexes, the stage and audience, and most crucially, between socio physical real and its virtual double. When the affection that Berardi refers to between the human and body as an information source is lost to virtuality, it is inevitable that a degree of empathy is simultaneously discarded. Banality and violence, as populist material for general consumption, is widely saturated online. Its popularity is sourced from offering a break from convention boredom (which in itself is a consequence of alienated labour), instead offering a new kind of boredom, the numbing anaesthetics of attention economics. Having instant availability to infinite sensational and violent material in an everyday context actively promotes ambivalence and withdrawal, which along with victimhood are perhaps the West's most dominating religions.

Text: From Territories of Victimhood, 2017.

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