There's power in the status update. That atomised, ephemeral piece of content can move markets, politics, and people. It has contributed to massive social change; it has contributed to the creation, and closure, of massive businesses; and it has fundamentally changed the relationship between the self and others.
The spontaneity of the status update does not lessen its power to create tremendous emotional impact. When brevity is the order of the day, something said in less than 200 characters can be shocking, jolting, and harsh. Whatever is written in a status update, it is part of the self, the body politic; it can possess emotional currency that has as much lasting value as the longest book.
This currency is celebrated in an exhibition recently held by Mandatory Thinking – a duo, made up of Rishi Dastidar and Matt Busher - at the Her House Gallery in Hoxton, London. Entitled Self Portrait Postcards, it displays 1000 of Dastidar's Facebook updates as colourful A5 postcards. The result is a mosaic of experiences captured in short form.