RAGE AGAINST THE COPIER MACHINE

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RAGE AGAINST THE COPIER MACHINE

 user 2008-02-20 at 2:23:00 pm Views: 54
  • #21016

    Rage against the photocopier machine
    Photocopier rage is all the rage. A Canadian study by copier manufacturer Hewlett Packard found 10% of users admitted hitting recalcitrant photocopying machines. A further 30% said they “seriously wanted to kick or hit” their photocopier but managed to exercise restraint.”You know there is something seriously wrong with your photocopier at work when someone has laminated an ‘out of order’ sign,” wailed one blogger. “One wants such a frequently used sign to look its best, after all.”An agent for a well-known brand of copying machines says each machine will jam or suffer some sort of breakdown on average every 1000 copies. With the average machine in a medium-sized office responsible for 3000 copies every day, that means multiple opportunities for collective rage.

    The Hewlett Packard study blamed violence towards photocopiers on workplace stress. In the comedy feature film Office Space, a photocopier comes to represent the drudgery and blandness of office work and, in a cathartic scene, is destroyed by a disaffected worker.But they’re not only an agent of oppression. Photocopiers have underwritten the explosion in zine culture, as illustrated by an exhibition currently showing in Flinders Street Station’s Degraves subway. “Zines are a low-budget, accessible ‘democracy of the multiple’ form of artistic and written expression, usually centred around photocopier technology as an easy and immediate form of reproduction,” says the blurb for Secrets of the Photocopier: Exposing Australia’s Underground Zine Culture.Conformist and counter-culture, the photocopier is a contradictory symbol of the potential and the restrictions of modern life. Says Wilken: “We understand so little about how we interact with everyday technologies. They’re fascinating and quite odd. But I would hate to be one of those people who work in places like Officeworks. It’s just too stressful.”