Video games have permeated so deep into mainstream culture that they are now places of social activism and protest. Phone Story, a game designed by the Molleindustria collective in Italy, does just this. It turns the fancy screen and sleek design of a smart phone into the engineered system of slavery, inhumanity, and oppression that produced it. And it does it so well, that within hours of its release last Fall, iTunes had banned it from its catalogue.
The Molleindustria collective, founded by Paolo Perdercini, is taking advantage of the popularity of video games and using them to reach mass audiences with critical and political analysis of real-world issues. The Phone Story game acts as an interactive brochure — self-critical of it’s own platform and educating the player about the inhumane practices behind the endless spiral of consumerism & obsolescence foisted on humanity by high tech corporations for decades, made manifest by our wonderous pocket computers.
Despite being banned by iTunes, the game is still available on the Android Marketplace for $0.99. All proceeds are donated to grassroots organizations fighting corporate abuses and the victims of this vicious cycle.
You can play the game in your browser for free — here.
For more info about the game and the politics of mobile devices, read more here.