Welcome to the Data Healing Recovery Clinic.
After three years of dedicated organising following The Great Outage of 2021, our community of data healers have succeeded in developing a program tailored to the unique needs of individuals recovering from data trauma. Our practice operates based on a holistic approach to digital wellness which centres clients as collaborators and active participants. This is a space where we have patience, not patients.
Each of our collaborators is a recipient of the recently inaugurated Facebook Recovery Fund. Here at the Data Healing Recovery Clinic (DHRC), we are dedicated to focused therapeutic collaboration to tackle the aftermath of the psychosocial unrest which plagued our global community during Facebook and Instagram’s brief tenure in our society.
The DHRC uses the following questions as an introduction to your care plan:
How have Facebook and Instagram brought harm into your life?
How have you harmed others in response?
What steps can we take together to resolve this harm, and to re-wire our algorithmically-programmed behaviours?
As part of your care, you will be invited to sessions in which you will gather with your fellow collaborators to co-create decentralised alternatives for a post-Facebook world, which upon completion will be developed with assistance from the Recovery Fund.
Frequently Asked Questions:
What is Data Trauma?
Data Trauma is a term first coined by the cyber-doula Olivia Ross to refer to manifestations of harm that emerged in the digital realm as a reflection and amplification of the trauma we face in the physical world. The internet, much like the “real” world, has been plagued by racism, sexism, ableism, classism and transphobia. What was fed to us as a space of limitless possibility was in reality a breeding ground for our most violent behaviours.
Data trauma is when you scrolled down your feed and would encounter imagery of violence alongside memes and selfies. It is the impact of this glaring incongruity. Data trauma also took shape in the form of censorship and deplatforming— something that occurred regularly to sex workers who were penalised, censored or even removed altogether from their digital platforms.
Many of our collaborators have been victims of doxxing— a form of data trauma in which personal details about an individual were shared on social media without their consent. For example, organisers who had their addresses and workplaces publicised and targeted, and survivors of domestic violence whose whereabouts were shared online, putting them in physical harm.
If any of this applies to you, know that you are not alone. We are here to help.
What is the Facebook Recovery Fund?
The Facebook Recovery Fund was established in 2023 as the first ever global reparations program, in response to the wide-scale damage inflicted by their model of surveillance capitalism.
The term surveillance capitalism was coined by Shoshana Zuboff who defined the term as “the unilateral claiming of private human experience as free raw material for translation into behavioral data.”
This corporate predation structured Facebook’s entire business. Its platforms made money by surveilling everything we did, and buying and selling our data to the highest bidder. What’s most harmful about this practice was that in addition to selling our data, these platforms also profited from manipulating our behaviour. Jaron Lanier — a founding father of virtual reality who is perhaps Silicon Valley’s most visible outspoken critic — appropriately termed these platforms as “behavioral modification empires”.
The Recovery Fund is the first step towards achieving what we here at DHRC term “digital behavioural rehabilitation”.
What is Data Healing?
Data Healing emerged in 2020 as an experimental practice that sought to draw links between technology, nature, and spirituality. Our integrative approach centres indigenous wisdom and its perspectives on wellness and interdependence. Here at the DHRC, data is used to empower, not categorise.
Mycelial therapy is central to our practice. Often cited as the original internet, mycelia are the intricate networks that exist in the subsoil to connect and support plant life. We have found that psilocybin – a compound created by some of these fungi – is foundational in healing relationships to connectivity, and facilitating ancient data retrieval.
Data Healing is actively being defined by its collaborators, and it is with this co-creation in mind that we invite you to join our practice. Let us logout to log-in, together.