Hot Tub Streams & Wet Media Dreams

On February 24th, 2022 I was part of a panel at the University of Toronto Sex Salon discussing “the hydraulic technopolitics of sex, games, and Twitch.”

From the event abstract: “From “streaming” to “the Internet as tubes,” aquatic metaphors are historically central to conceptualizations of digital technology. Hot Tub streams literalize the erotic work that intermingles the controlling and hydraulic imaginaries of the wet, wide web. Reflecting the fluid and ludic nature of this topic, we invite this Zoom discussion to be iterative. Five members will narrate their encounters with Hot Tube streaming & what their work in games brings to the topic of erotic leisure moderation. We then ask our guests: Can digital media’s “wet” history teach platform users and policymakers to be better (or productively worse) players with each other?”

For my part, I spoke on observations I had made of a fishing channel on Twitch. I connected those observations to the “hot tub meta” to conclude “It seems that no matter what a woman is doing in water (even a “masculine” hobby like fishing, bikini clad or not) there are attempts to sexualize that woman and her body. What I think this underscores is the real fear behind this preoccupation with women and water: that the power and success of women diminishes that of men in environments they think of as naturally theirs.”

A recording of the panel is available on YouTube: Hot Tub Streams and Wet Media Dreams: the Hydraulic Technopolitics of Sex, Games, and Twitch

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