Human Not Human

Natan Castay
Belgium | 2023 | 39 min
World premiere
Languages : English, Portuguese, French
Subtitles : French, English

After losing his job during lockdown, Natan signs up to a microtask website. Having become a “Turker” alongside tens of thousands of others, he is paid a cent for each face he erases on Google Street View. Under the guise of Otto, a fictional character, he embarks on an experimental and playful investigation into “clickworkers”, haunted by the spectre of Beckett.

Is the work of humans waiting to be absorbed by the programmed rise of artificial intelligence? This striking prophecy was discredited in Antonio Casilli's 2019 sociological study En attendant les robots (“Waiting for robots”), which has inspired Natan Castay's first film. After losing his student job during the Covid-19 pandemic, he signs up to Amazon Mechanical Turk, a microtask website that pays peanuts. At a unitary rate of one cent, an army of ‘Turkers’ spend most of their time blurring faces on Google Street View, or looking at satellite photos to identify swimming pools (!). Castay has assigned the role of his fictional twin to an actor (Harpo Guit), in order to carry out a humorous investigation into digital labour, during online conversations with other very real ‘Turkers’ - such as Phil, an alcoholic based in Thailand, or Eric and Cindy, a pair of cheeky Brazilian siblings. The absurd, carefully staged, and quite Beckettian tribulations of Otto show how modern click workers - the consenting dupes of this digital farce - are working today to teach the machines that will one day replace them.

Emmanuel Chicon

En attendant les robots, 2023
Athéna, 2020


Elias BerdahPierre Adamczyk
Guillaume Lion
Tabatha Duval
Theda CPH Stream
Bénedicte LescalierMediadiffusion
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