#09 – Who cares about EU communications?

SMART blog.
Tech, pop-culture, and politics for a sexy media literacy.

Who cares about EU communications ?

by Alessandro Cozzutto 
Digital Communication Specialist @ Slash_Prod
Estimated reading time: 3 minutes + videos
“In the future, everyone will be world-famous for 15 minutes.”
This article argues that pop-culture can explain citizens’ indifference towards the EU.

In the arts, design, advertising, as well as in the music business, Andy Warhol always focused on identity.

His work seems to answer one and one only question: how does mass communication’s daily consumption shape human beings’ perception of both the collective and the individual self?

In the mechanical repetition of soup cans and Hollywood’s icons, he was able to see and to reproduce desire and fear, of control and meaning.

And sex.
And power. 
Kevin Spacey knows. 

The famous 15 minutes to be famous are a commodity, which people want to buy, and even die for, to convey a 
simple message to the biggest crowd possible: please do not forget about me.

I call EGO-POP this simple search for relief, this intimate belief in eternal life via selfie.

Popular culture has a relevant role in shaping the linguistics of this new (old) religion: 15 minutes of celebrity as a taste of paradise.
With the arrival of a generation of YouTubers and social network stars, someone saw the fulfillment of a prophecy. People follow, tweet, post, share. 

Why – in the century after the century of the Self – do they seem to like the ephemeral so much?

Is this need for self celebration a social plague of ignorance and radicalism, or is something that can foster political participation in EU integration?

If yes, at what conditions? 
#EUandME – European elections 2019
Duration: 1:27 minutes
One mission
I cannot help wondering what principles drive, inspire, and limit EU communications.
5 questions epitomize my 5-year direct observation of EU-funded communication campaigns:

  1. Is communication participation? 
  2. Is participation possible today, without digital communications? 
  3. Is participation just another form of communication?
  4. Are parliamentary elections still relevant, as a direct form of communication between private citizens and institutions?
  5. Why shall people care about all that, exactly? 
These tweets, which resonate with both my education and my profession, yield to a less-than-140-character answer: 

The main goal of EU-funded communications is to validate the EU budget.

And influence, by extent. which means that only those, who get the even smallest piece of the cake, care about it.

Could it be different?
Hilde Vautmans – World Childrens Day Challenge
Duration: 1:00 minute
It’s all about money, because it’s not all about money
Although most of the important things in life require money, at some point, I don’t believe that money is the most important thing in life.
I think it’s all about people.

Participation and communication form individuals’ collective identity. 
Which allows people offer what 
money cannot buy.

A smart communication strategy uses its budget to purchase the 15 minutes, which people are desperately trying to sell. 

Is it an “EGO-POP EUROPE” what Europe needs? 
School of the Future – Cyber Security Day
Duration: 1:52 minutes
The SMART revolution
Each time history repeats itself as a farce, a specter starts haunting Europe.

The question is not whether a revolution is going to take place or not. 
The question is: 

  • what kind of revolution is going to take place? 

A SMART revolution is a revolution, which does not simply rotate on itself, in order to change all, so that all remains the same: a SMART revolution is rather awareness that 
we are constantly spinning.
I find hard to believe that the digital transformation, which many mention but nobody has seen yet, will take place with much more than these three principles:

  1. People-centred: direct forms of micro-funding, crowd-sourcing, training, and education.

  2. Mobile-centred: all we need is a smartphone and an internet connection. 

  3. Video-centred: if you can just show and tell, no explanation or translation is needed. 
The Partisan II – trailer
Duration: 1:39 minutes
Who cares?
In the end, who shall care about EU communications, apart from those who make their passion, or at least their living, out of it?

It’s a matter of decision and control: take the European Commission’s visual identity.

The EC rightly assumes responsibility for whatever is published under its name and logo.

In the world wide web, though, the only zone where the magic happens is out of the box. People need to have access, to adapt, to own, so that these messages
reach them, and – as a consequence – to them. That’s correct: people want to see their ugly face in the picture.

And this is what I have tried to do, each time my agency Slash Prod communicated on behalf of the EU institutions.

By shaping a visual identity according to their own 15 minutes, citizens can shape not only their identity, but the identity of a nation and – by extent – the identity of a nation of nations.

Now, if you feel ready to find out how, just join the revolution!

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