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Playlist "37C3: Unlocked"


Trevor Paglen

How the history of military and government PSYOPS involving mind-control, UFOs, magic, and remote-control zombies, explains the future of AI and generative media. Along the way, talk attendees will be given an enrollment code to join a specialized CTF/ARG game called CYCLOPS that explores these themes and that will run the duration of Congress.

As AI-generated content, social-media influence operations, micro-targeted advertising, and ubiquitous surveillance have become the norm on the Internet and in the market in general, we have entered an era of PSYOP Capitalism. This is an era of hallucinations designed to transform each of us into a “targeted individual” through the manipulation of perception. This talk explores a secret history of reality-altering military and intelligence programs that serve as antecedents to a phantasmagoric present.

At the talk, attendees will be given a registration code to play “CYCLOPS,” a CTF/ARG game that will run the duration of Congress. CYCLOPS explores the themes of the mind-control and PSYOPS through an interactive parafictional narrative taking place in the context of an obscure CIA cognitive warfare program from the early days of the Cold War.