‘Listening Back’ is a plug-in for the Chrome Browser that sonifies internet cookies in real time as one browses online. Utilising digital waveform synthesis, ‘Listening Back’ translates internet cookies into sound thereby creating an audible presence for hidden infrastructures that collect personal and identifying data by storing a file on one’s computer. Through the direct intervention of the World Wide Web as a technological, social and political platform, web audio is employed to expose the proliferation of ubiquitous online surveillance. Our access to the Web is visually mediated through screen devices and this project explores how sound can help us engage with complex phenomena beyond the graphical interface of the world wide web.
A live performance by the Browser Duo (Jasmine Guffond & Jacob Eriksen), will explore the potential of the ‘Listening Back’ browser plug-in as a musical instrument.