In Media Res

Curator’s Note

David Fincheris the myspace and facebook (2010) informs a story of this delivery regarding the social networking industry, exposing the work behind the tradition of electronic involvement. Fittingly, it really is a narrative that is enthusiastic about identification, especially course identification but similarly racial and identity that is ethnic. The myspace and facebook normally packed with Asian ladies, a well known fact which has been noted by Roger Ebert, among the film that is few who are able to be counted on to see individuals of color in popular cinema, in both their existence and their lack. In the Chicago Sun-Times review Ebert notes just how puzzling it really is that the movie depicts Asian women therefore promiscuously both in feeling of the word–Christy and Alice, played by Brenda Song and Malese Jow, are depicted as intimately aggressive, approaching Mark and Eduardo throughout a lecture, asking them down for a glass or two, and finally doing fellatio on Mark and Eduardo in adjoining stalls in a Cambridge pub bathroom–yet does not provide audiences a fuller image of why these are typically therefore present yet so missing in this tale of electronic hypercapitalism. Ebert writes “A subtext the film never reviews on is the omnipresence of appealing Asian ladies. Many of them are smart Harvard undergrads, two of those (allied with Sean) are Victoria’s Secret models, one (Christy, played by Brenda Song) is Eduardo’s girlfriend.” The film illustrates Asian ladies as idle arms within the industry that is digital respected and included just for their intimate work as hypersexualized, exotic sirens. Alice and Christy can be found at an integral scene during which Zuckerberg assigns positions within Facebook’s business hierarchy, but their offer to operate in the fledgling business is refused. This depiction of Asian females as intimate partners to your brand brand new captains of digital companies conceals their roles that are key these companies as non-sexual workers. Asian females employees in Asia and Southeast Asia assembled the equipment that hosts our Facebook pages and also the mobile computer that Zuckerberg utilized to create Facebook’s code. Depicting Asian ladies’ work as intimate in place of technical obscures rather than reveals the employees of color who “make” social networking.

sensory faculties of “exposure”

Many Thanks, Lisa, with this wonderful post. We especially like exactly exactly exactly how, nearby the end of one’s reviews, you are starting to unpack the methods when the hyper-sexualization and exoticization that is erotic of ladies in fact obscures their presence as raced subjects–one wants to express, raced laborers. At the very least when you look at the videos you reveal (and the thing I remember associated with the movie), it appears that Christy and Alice aren’t portrayed as unintelligent or actually unable. Indeed, they are Harvard pupils, and their intimate methods seem shrewd from the standpoint that is certain. Yet you’re right that after they get sidelined by Mark’s unit of work, their intimate and sex shows assist to obscure the racist divisions of labor currently present in the industry Mark and their cohort are entering. This indicates right here that competition will act as a form of hinge: the women’s racial identities intensify the really sexualizing and exoticizing energies which help to obscure other, less convenient areas of that extremely identity–that is, its place inside an labor system that is exploitive.

Many Thanks once more for a contribution that is great i really do aspire to see a lot more of this task in the foreseeable future!

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I must say I appreciate the job associated with the historic construction of “comfort women” to your intersection of racism and sexism into the social networking. The whitewashing of Silicon Valley in this film has also been extremely unpleasant in my experience; I kept thinking about Chela Sandoval’s great “New Sciences” essay as we simultaneously wondered just just what took place into the male that is asian-American Mark “hired” at Harvard have been evidently changed by white Stanford co-eds during the Facebook workplaces. There’s a great deal more i would ike to state about this, however the concern i do want to ask you to answer is all about Christy’s psychic devolution during the period of the movie, from a sexually-empowered (albeit, as you explain, narratively marginalized) university student upon very very first introduction to a neurotic pyromaniac in her final scene. The myspace and facebook does not appear to do anybody any worthwhile in this film (no body’s any happier for it), but Christy to their interactions undoubtedly suffers probably the most. She seems, to my eyes, to reduce her head in addition to her self sufficiency. Would you just just take this scene as proof of her victimization, or could we read it as acting out against a patriarchal value system that pushes her to the role of convenience woman and makes her with nothing to do?

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I do believe you have struck for a tension that is interesting the movie, one between showing white male privilege and reifying it.

My very first impression for the pretty terrible depiction of Asian feamales in the movie — particularly set alongside the other two ladies played by Rashida Jones and Rooney Mara — had been the film had been wanting to mark this business as criminals, and that media empires in many cases are established by (misogynistic) criminals. There’s a method to see the movie as an exposition of (white, male, right) elite privilege, an area where there is maybe not space for anybody else (one of Twitter’s founders is homosexual, nevertheless the tale has very little time for that information either). The movie’s dark environment as well as its multitude of narcissistic jerks may be read as critical of everything the people do, not just their attitudes towards ladies but additionally their alternatives in starting Facebook while the web site’s politics.

All of having said that, I’m unsure the movie does great deal to market that sort of reading, which can be instead large back at my component. We question most viewers selected through to these depictions (it) and less nevertheless will ask: “hey, as these are Harvard gals, are not here a lot of productive working Asian women we’re maybe not seeing? while you pointed out, most experts thought we would ignore”

Wonderful insights, as constantly.

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Limitations of social realism?

I’d this exact same discussion during the Golden Globes, by which We took the movie to endeavor because of its unimaginative depictions of females. A buddy held the view that the movie ended up being critiquing the culture of male privilege in tech start ups (and also at Harvard!) and, further, felt that the film ended up being fundamentally practical in failing woefully to express strong characters that are female! Which raises a concern: are you able to critique the social dominant through the mode of social realism that Sorkin favors? Or do you need some mode of exaggeration, satire, surrealism, something?

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That is precisely the concern, and demonstrably there is no answer that is right. Exaggeration is very important. It brings into sharper focus issues otherwise concealed, because we do not love to speak about them. Realism is necessary is people that are lure the storyline.

why is The myspace and facebook so vexing will it be is both realistic (like in a significantly true tale) and, in my situation, exaggerated — the copious sex and medications, its overly articulated Sorkinesque discussion and very nearly campy depiction of Harvard. But a quantity of audiences might miss its excesses and any (prospective!) social message.

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Asian Women and Cyber-Punk Fiction

I needed to attend to react to this interesting post till when I had the opportunity to look at Social system and this afternoon We went right down to the area Redbox and rented the film. After reading your post today my attention ended up being interested in the asian ladies that look through the movie. We very much buy into the point which you make that the main focus on sex obscures the labor that is real of people within the manufacturing of electronic culture. But we wonder in the event that option to wallpaper the movie with asian females had one thing related to the legacy of cyber-punk fiction. As an example, David Fincher’s moody nightclub’s reminded me personally of Chiba City from William Gibson’s Neuromancer. Gibson’s cyber-punk novels imagine an electronic future described as a mixture of asian and culture that is western. Possibly the filmmakers had been trying to mirror this legacy without stopping to unpack its implications. As well as the legacy of cyber-punk pictures, We pointed out that the film reasserts lots of the tropes of 80s and 90s production culture that is digital. Computer nerds versus jocks. “no-collar workers” versus matches. Endless workdays and office that is open plans. I will be maybe not providing this description as a reason. I will be simply suggesting that asian females are becoming one thing of a meeting in depictions of hacker/digital tradition.

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exceptional feedback

Great remarks, and I also particularly agree with Tavia and Aymar: the relative line between review and “realism” are difficult to see. That you cannot run a reasonable tech start up in California without hiring lots of Asians and Asian American of both genders to work at it because I come from Silicon Valley, it is absolutely obvious to me. Several of my asian feminine friends from senior school now are project supervisors at silicon valley businesses this is exactly why i desired to create about this–the movie has its mind when you look at the sand re: asian feminine work in countless means. We have since learned that Priscilla Chan, Zuckberg’s gf since university, worked at Twitter while she is at Harvard, and so the movie’s framing of Asian US women as outside of the circuit of manufacturing is an energetic repression of exactly what appears like a historic reality. In line with the Time Magazine article about Zuckerberg as guy of the season, they came across at A jewish fraternity, that will be where in actuality the myspace and facebook illustrates an integral scene during which Eduardo speculates from the “connection” between Jewish guys and Asian ladies.

Caetlin, i believe that Christy’s devolution throughout the movie should indeed be important. It’s that bipolar image for the Oriental girl as both flexible and also as a dragon woman.

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