FUTURE TAPES was a collective sensemaking project I produced and directed in New York from 1978-1981 under the aegis of my NGO Global Vision Corporation. It's a collection of dozens of 3-minute interactive videos about the future of the world, made by its own public including ordinary people and leading global thinkers. Participants recorded their message alone in a private room, while facing their live image on a video monitor. All tapes were then screened back for the whole group; this feedback loop enabled each participant to become more aware of the group differences and consensus. Participants included the visionary designer Buckminster Fuller, paleoanthropologist Richard E. Leakey, futurist Hazel Henderson, psychiatrist R.D. Laing, eco-philosopher Thomas Berry, architect Paolo Soleri, educatior Elaine de Beauport, US Center for Defense Information director Rear-Admiral Gene LaRoque, anthropologist Helena Norberg-Hodge, economist Kenneth Boulding, UN Under-secretary General Robert Mueller, and many other leading thinkers and ordinary people.
Here's what Bucky Fuller said: "The next few years of humans on board Spaceship Earth are going to be as event-packed as a million years, a million years ago! We will know then, whether humans are going to remain on board of planet Earth... (...) The point is, the universe wants to find out whether individual humans have the integrity to really go along with their own decisions, or are they still going to take orders from others? I simply say, if we stay on planet Earth, it's because we pass our cosmic examination of integrity."
The project was inspired by my collaboration with the American video artist Wendy Clarke's Love Tapes, a public interactive video project we held for two weeks in the lobby of the World Trade Centre in New York. Hundreds of people participated. A daily selection of the tapes were broadcast on Manhattan Cable TV, which brought more participants. The project made video history and was featured with a front page headline in the New York Post.