Whispering Wall Project


(2018) An internet-of-things confession and guilt-elimination device. Collective of small devices (14x14x10cm) connected through the internet. Installation in one ore many rooms.

Guilt is the worst. It’s what got us into this mess in the first place. Guilt is a trap, a mindfuck, a spell. And even though you know it stinks and you’re being played, the dirty trick with guilt is that it’s non-rationalizable. You cannot ignore the feeling of guilt, or reason with it. You will have to find a way to deal with it, get rid of it, eliminate it. Well, now you can.

Get rid of the guilt you are feeling for something you know or think you did wrong, by putting your finger into this device. A signal will immediately go off on all other devices, inviting people to join in. During the next minute, these people decide how you shall be relieved of your guilt, by also putting their finger into their device and pushing one of two buttons. If the majority of these people chooses to push the SENTENCE button, the lights on your station will go red and a harmless but unpleasant electrical shock will hit your finger. You can now rest assured and consider your guilt abolished: you were punished and you are free. If the majority pushes the EXONERATE button, the lights on your station go white. You’re free. You have been absolved; you are instantly relieved of your guilt and you will not be punished. Instead, two of the people who voted are randomly selected and will undergo the punishment for you.

Technical notes: If nobody answers a station’s call, the station itself will decide and vote. In case of exoneration, these stations also take part in the random selection. People and stations voting in favor of sentencing have a 2:1 higher chance of being selected in case of exoneration.