Sarah Wanenchak offers a nice theory about the digital uncanny. Specifically she applies the uncanny to our experience of eliciting meaning from cybercultural noise. Wanenchak cites the Horse_ebooks, Webdriver Torso, and numbers radio station cases, where we (well, interested, social-media-wielding people) generated interpretive narratives to make sense of suggestive digital objects.
We sometimes cling to this digital uncanny in order to ward off the depressing fall into the unremarkable reality behind some of these events, or to make our apophenia less eccentric.
Infocult is pleased that she deems humans to be "little sacs of walking pattern recognition algorithms", and in respect of that reproduce her beloved NIN ARG image here:
A Fox News commentator cut loose on Facebooks Oculus Rift purchase.
The article begins with a shrieking headline:"Facebook twists reality again and risks ruining your children". Then Keith Ablow is off to the races, hitting all kinds of fearsome digital media buttons:
Addiction ("My theory is that Facebook is an addictive technological drug... the Oculus VR will make matters worse.")
Medical discourse (bringing in the FDA right off the bat)
A call for regulation ("There is no FDA in the technology space to make sure that new inventions distributed to tens or hundreds of millions of people aren’t going to hurt them. But maybe there has to be.")
Virtual world somehow wars against the physical: "Has anyone wondered whether [Mark Zuckerberg]'s quest reflects an underlying contempt for something he lived through for real -- or for our shared reality, our real relationships and solving our real problems?" And "There are lots of Americans who already sit around and play games like Wartune until they have no money left in their bank accounts, have let their jobs go and have ruined their relationships."
There's also a quiet religious (Christian) argument:
I can’t be the only one wondering whether someone who encourages people to make hundreds of false “friends” and block unwanted feedback and transport themselves into games where they pretend they are knights or murderers is the best shepherd to follow. (emphases added)
CONPLAN 888... written in 2011, was part of a training exercise. And a detailed one, at that. The plan summarizes responses to threats ranging from pathogenic zombies (zombies created via infection) to space zombies (what they sound like) to chicken zombies (they really exist!).
An Indiegogo project aimed at foiling surveillance regimes partakes deeply of the uncanny. URME (pronounced "you are me") prints masks ("facial prosthetics") patterned on the artist's own face. The rest of us can wear his face en masse, confusing Big Brother.
This is a fine example of using Gothic approaches to undermine a Gothic-style regime.