Borecore

Illustration by Erik Carter. Screenshots from Vine users Alona Forsythe, Brandon Bowen, Dems, imanilindsay, MRose and Sionemaraschino.

Excerpt from this article:

The Vine videos that rise to the top of the heap typically feature dance routines, quick-cut pranks and the occasional clever stop-motion short. But if you tap into the video-sharing app’s raw “fire hose,” a different picture emerges… reveal[ing] that buried beneath those popular Vines lies a less visible but more intriguing trend: six-second displays of normalcy. Rather than killing time at the mall, in a Spencer’s Gifts or the food court, young people are filming themselves doing the incredibly mundane: goofing around in a backyard pool, lounging on basement couches, whatever; in other words, recording the minutiae of their lives and uploading it for not very many to see.

…A cynic might dismiss all this obsessive self-documentation as evidence of generational narcissism, but you could just as easily choose to view it as a developing global pastime. Call it borecore: the never-to-be-viral output that comes from mixing powerful devices and a lifetime of social-­media training with regular, old teenage boredom. Seen this way, its predecessors are more prosaic than pathological: doodling in a composition notebook, making scrapbooks, driving around aimlessly. But that simplicity, that sameness, can feel magical when you binge on it: a series of furtive glimpses into the lives of people across the country and around the world doing a whole lot of nothing.

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