Team ········· Ksenia Shokhina
     ········· Rocco Punghellini
Cooperation ·· Innovation Lab#2, La Plateforme
Year ········· 2023

The fundamental idea of GizUp is the concept of circles of trust and shared responsibility. In our network, everyone owns a digital space (house) and can exchange their house keys with up to 5 people (their close circle of friends). Every key exchange is mutual, and those trusted contacts have super-admin powers over all the houses to which they possess the keys. Those powers include deleting content, inviting other people over (visitors), and deciding how those visitors can interact in the house. In other words, keyholders are fully responsible for their close friend's houses. This is a big responsibility, and that’s all that GizUp is about - giving responsibilities to trusted people to foster practices of collective care in the digital space.

Living in Berlin, Hassan is a talented young tile maker from Afghanistan. He led us into the Afghan diaspora in Berlin, where we experienced the weight and definition of trust in their culture. Taking this experience as a starting point, we set up a Metaverse workshop in a virtual restaurant to listen to their views on social networks and to discuss together the norms of human interaction in the community.
Based on these guidelines and experiences we created GizUp as a response to the research theme - Social Networks of Tomorrow.

The name of GizUp is a whimsical fusion of "Gizab," a district in Afghanistan's Daykundi Province, and the uplifting spirit of our dear friend Hassan, who is originally from there.

The Metaverse workshop scene was based on an Afghan restaurant we interviewed in Marseille - Chez Romain et Marion. Marion came to Marseille in her youth, and Romain is a native Marseillean. They shared with us about the local Afghan community and the different ways they feel about their Afghan roots.

Hassan once took all of us to dine together at an Afghan restaurant in Berlin. Therefore came this idea of adapting the restaurant as a way of storytelling for the topic of social networks and showing the information architecture of social media applications.

GizUp is part of the research project - Social Networkds of Tomorrow, which initiated by La Plateforme Innovation Lab.
Thanks to La Plateforme Innovation Lab for the opportunity and project partner Project Liberty for the support. Last but not least, thanks to Hassan and his friends for accepting us into their community.

Feel free to check out the full documentation about the Social Networks of Tomorrow research project.