The hidden life of an amazon user

the hidden life of an amazon user by joana moll

emap perspective #1

26 Jan

to 27 Apr

free admission

galeria um


The Hidden Life of an Amazon User, by Joana Moll, brings to light the often unknown abuse and exploitation that Amazon exerts on its users. This project is based on the artist’s experience when she decided to buy The Life, Lessons & Rules for Success: The Journey, The Teachable Moments & 10 Rules for Success Cultivated from the Life & Wisdom of Jeff Bezos. To buy this book, the largest e-commerce platform on the planet forces customers to go through twelve different interfaces, made up of large amounts of code. This code performs all kinds of operations, from organising the site’s content to recording customer activity. In all, Moll captured 1307 requests, which translates into 8724 A4 pages of printed code, 87.33 MB of information and around 30 Watt-hours of energy needed to charge them. According to Amazon’s guidelines, its business model is based on “constantly listening to customers to improve and perfect the customer experience”. In other words, the business of the company owned by the world’s richest man is based on continuously recording customer behaviour and activity in order to increase the company’s revenues. The 8724 pages of code that track user behaviour and experience, and which are involuntarily loaded by the customer via their browser, are proof of Amazon’s main monetisation strategy and take centre stage in this piece, which also includes texts by Jara Rocha, Jussi Parikka and Christian Ulrik Andersen & Søren Bro Pold.
An artist and researcher based between Barcelona and Berlin, Joana Moll’s work explores how techno-capitalist narratives affect the literacy of machines, human beings and ecosystems. Her main research topics include the materiality of the internet, surveillance, social profiles, interfaces and energy.

work created in 2019, resulting from a residency at impakt in utrecht (netherlands)



european media art platform is a project co-funded by the european union




this piece is part of the emap perspective #1 exhibition 

support portuguese republic – culture / directorate-general for the arts. rtcp – network of portuguese theatres and cinemas

Created using Figma