The Mercy of Data operates as a living metaphor, embodying actual trends from the social media platform Twitter. The installation is a closed system containing a plant and a maintenance system controlling water, air and light. While using the Twitter API, hashtags are utilised to regulate these three elements and therefore decide over the plants fate. Each element is assigned to its hashtag counterpart. The appearance of an “element” will trigger its associated lamp, pump or fan.
The work questions the fetishisation of common online media platforms and the resulting social and psychological dependencies. Therefore it outsources the three most essential elements required for life and make them dependent on a live data stream from Twitter. Every tweet containing the keywords #water, #air, and #light will become part of the installation and influence it. Being the only force to affect the living conditions of the system the social network gains the facet of a divine power. The life of the plant is at the mercy of its data.