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Twenty-First Century Digital Snuff: The Circulation of Images and Videos of Real Death Online

MCKENNA, Mark (2023) Twenty-First Century Digital Snuff: The Circulation of Images and Videos of Real Death Online. In: Difficult Death, Dying and the Dead in Media and Culture. Palgrave Macmillan, London. ISBN 9783031407314 (In Press)

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Abstract or description

The snuff movie has been a cinematic spectre that has haunted successive generations of moviegoers. In the 1970s, the idea galvanised the feminist movement, and while most were quick to concede that it was unlikely that a snuff movie existed, the possibility that one might have proved impossible to dispel. Narratives of this kind have imagined the aesthetic of the snuff movie as the resolutely analogue aesthetic of degraded videotape or flickering cine reels. However, in the twenty-first century, the digital shift has not only democratised production, thereby making the likelihood that a snuff movie might exist more probable, but it has also seen the rise of ‘tube sites’ which provide a platform for the dissemination of this kind of material. This chapter will examine the origins of the snuff movie and will explore its evolution from marginal media myth to digital reality. Considering the murder of Jun Lin by the ‘cannibal killer’ Luka Magnotta, shared online as 1 Lunatic 1 Icepick, this video was freely shared to ‘shock sites’ across the world and garnered hundreds of thousands of views raising significant questions about the motivation of those who would choose to access a film of this kind.

Item Type: Book Chapter, Section or Conference Proceeding
Faculty: School of Digital, Technologies and Arts > Film and Media
Depositing User: Mark MCKENNA
Date Deposited: 14 Sep 2023 09:51
Last Modified: 14 Sep 2023 09:51

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