Chuck Kuan

Former Child Unemployment Services (FoCUS)

single-channel video installation (2017)

As we have come to increasingly rely on technology even for the most basic tasks, the kind of work we do has transformed alongside it. This emerging form of labor that is augmented by, and often times exists in, digital spaces is digital labor. More specifically, sometimes unwaged digital labor blurs relationships between the worker (user) and employer (corporation) so that unwaged work is often sought out voluntarily and, more importantly, unknowingly through participation on social media and by sharing data. This is known as play labor.

Former Child Unemployment Services (FoCUS) uses video to present different scenarios surrounding a speculative employment training program for play labor. By casting a narrative light on the physical actions related to this new type of labor, FoCUS prompts the viewer to recognize their own part in this system of exploitation and understand it from a new, critical perspective.