Calling for Clever Critics

I’ve been thinking about New Media Arts criticism and the difficulty in assessing or criticising a form that is incohate. I’d like to see some reviews of bots, reviews as in arts criticism or commercial reviews, not so much academic analysis or the usual unfriendly users. Here is a couple, the first more of what I’m calling for than the second which is more academic-oriented:

Lewis laCook’s review of Christopher Fahey’s bot, ada1852, for Rhizome’s artBase > ‘Let your fingers do the talking‘.

Jill Walker’s paper on ‘Online Caroline’: How I was played by Online Caroline.

3 Responses to “Calling for Clever Critics”

  1. 1 Websafe

    Well-written reviews of any media are sometimes more interesting than the piece itself! A case in point: Anthony Lane’s film reviews in “The New Yorker.”

    Lewis laCook’s review of ada1852 was good. I had my first successful chat with her just now. There were always some unexplained technical problems before. Because of this, I have never yet been able to view the art in the database. Rhizome’s arrangement of making Friday a free day and asking for a modest membership fee to cover other days sounds eminently fair.

    Jill Walker’s review of Online Caroline was excellent. She brought out the queasy, uneasy elements of interactive theater in general. A lot of people I know don’t want to chat with bots, but can’t articulate why; they might just say it’s “creepy.” Walker’s review helps to examine this.

    I like seeing bots/interactive theater taken seriously as art forms. Onward and upward!

  2. 2 Christy Dena

    Hello Websafe,

    Yes, onward and upward indeed! I should make this clear now that you’re all welcome to email Mark, Jeremy or myself with reviews of bots. We’ll post them for you.

  3. 3 John P

    Anyone feel like reviewing my chatbot, A.I. Alex? It’s at The bot is available for download, or you can talk to it online.

    If anyone does do a review of it, can you drop me a line as well ( That way I can put a link on my site to the review - or just post the text there if you want.

    Oh, and Alex is entered in this year’s ChatterBox Challange (, so feel free to vote for it there ;)

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