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Innovation Design Engineering (MA/MSC)

Lisa Aoyama


Hi! I’m Lisa, a designer that loves to question things, and get people to question things too. Questions are powerful because they can trigger curiosity, enquiry, and empathy.

Before RCA, I studied design at Tokyo University of the Arts, where I was trained as a maker and an artist. So I gravitate more towards questioning the unquestioned, and exploring what could be rather than what will be.

I use expression to shift the way people think. I like to think of innovation not through behavioural but perceptual change.


When I learnt about misinformation spreading on Instagram through influencers, I really felt like I was not exempt from the whole “fake news” problem. My feed was not a “safe haven” just because I curated my feed myself. We live in a society with big problems, but how are we supposed to act if we are influenced unknowingly, and end up believing in the wrong things?

I was told that this was a “difficult topic” on so many occasions, and it certainly was, mainly because it’s about how people think and what they believe, and that’s a contentious area. But I do hope that the project acts as a provocation for you — even if momentarily — to pause and think about how you're influenced, and how you trust someone, on social media.

REFERENCES:

Cheetham, J. (2021, February 19). Does yoga have a conspiracy theory problem? BBC News. https://www.bbc.com/news/world-55957298

Farivar, S., Wang, F., & Yuan, Y. (2021). Opinion leadership vs. para-social relationship: Key factors in influencer marketing. Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, 59, 102371. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jretconser.2020.102371

Haubursin, C. (2020, October 28). The Instagram aesthetic that made QAnon mainstream. Vox. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_7FWr2Nvf9I

Pennycook, G., & Rand, D. (2020). The Psychology of Fake News. PsyArXiv. https://doi.org/10.31234/osf.io/ar96c

Roose, K. (2021, March 4). What Is QAnon, the Viral Pro-Trump Conspiracy Theory? The New York Times. https://www.nytimes.com/article/what-is-qanon.html

Tiffany, S. by K. (2020, August 18). The Women Making Conspiracy Theories Beautiful. The Atlantic. https://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2020/08/how-instagram-aesthetics-repackage-qanon/615364/

Tukachinsky, R., & Stever, G. (2019). Theorizing Development of Parasocial Engagement. Communication Theory, 29(3), 297–318. https://doi.org/10.1093/ct/qty032

van der Linden, S., & Roozenbeek, J. (2020). Psychological Inoculation Against Fake News. In The Psychology of Fake News (pp. 147–169). Routledge. https://doi.org/10.4324/9780429295379-11


IMAGES:

@ashleyjoyhouston. (2020, July 18). A s h l e y h o u s t o n on Instagram: “Speak Up, Get Loud! Y’all have been doing THAT! My heart is so overwhelmed by the amount of people that have shared my previous post! Thank…”. https://www.instagram.com/p/CCye04tA_qs/

@ciarachanelself. (2020, July 28). C I A R A C H A N E L S E L F on Instagram: “Every 30 seconds a child is sold for sex, labor or organ harvesting. Most can’t even think about it, let alone talk about it. It’s too much…”. https://www.instagram.com/p/CDKm8iSnHtR/

@dentistwivesclub. (2020, July 30). Rebecca on Instagram: “Today is human trafficking awareness day. Four Million children are missing every year 800,000 in USA alone!!! I challenge you to post to…”. https://www.instagram.com/p/CDRpnQVnlPx/

@dryflymom. (2021, March 4). Tnobs on Instagram: “I am simply STUNNED at the amount of people lining up for poison. The indoctrination and obedience was so easy. It was NEVER about a…”. https://www.instagram.com/p/CMAoZPrnb1f/

Gillespie, E. (2020, September 30). ‘Pastel QAnon’: The female lifestyle bloggers and influencers spreading conspiracy theories through Instagram. The Feed. https://www.sbs.com.au/news/the-feed/pastel-qanon-the-female-lifestyle-bloggers-and-influencers-spreading-conspiracy-theories-through-instagram

@graceinhisbeauty1. (2021, March 4). Elizabeth Marie on Instagram: “It’s pretty simple. Like 1+1=2. Oh wait, is that racist?! God created you to breathe freely. He also made you with an immune system to…”. https://www.instagram.com/p/CMA-pKgheaD/

@helenowen. (2020, July 31). Helen Owen on Instagram: “This topic is not a ‘trend’. This is not an Instagram challenge. Today is World Day Against Human Trafficking, but tomorrow 10 million…”. https://www.instagram.com/p/CDSmF-ZDxPk/

@krystaltini. (2020, June 8). Krystal Tini on Instagram: “Hey all, please look into the 5G Summit as well as InPower Movement as previously mentioned. The most important thing you can do right…”. https://www.instagram.com/tv/CBL3LVThS1V/

Loofbourow, L. (2020, September 18). It Makes Perfect Sense That QAnon Took Off With Women This Summer. Slate Magazine. https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2020/09/qanon-women-why.html

@madluvv21. (2020, July 10). Maddie Thompson on Instagram: “Love this quote- I feel it to the core and it radiates through my posts as of late. “The truth is incontrovertible; malice may attack it,…”. https://www.instagram.com/p/CCcv-S6jlcR/