4. People’s Republic of Desire.

We saw the documentary People’s Republic of Desire (Hao Wu, 2018). It follows two people in China who are hoping to become famous through live-streaming. It also tracks the fans—some very rich, some very poor—who pay to vote for them in an annual competition. We went to get some bubble tea afterwards to talk about the film and wonder about internet audiences, social connectedness, and bad interface design.

Chris Piuma and Lochin Brouillard saw this film as part of Hot Docs. Chris mentions this episode of You’re Not Funny.

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