Hollow Signals

A review of Geoff Gander’s “White Noise” in AEscifi: The Canadian Science Fiction Review.
By Derek Newman-Stille

Our world is permeated with signals – radio waves, satellite transmissions… we are surrounded by sounds that only our electronic devices can hear. Geoff Gander’s “White Noise” pushes us into an electronic blackout, a loss of communication. After three days without radio or satellite, rumours have begun: an EM disturbance, sunspots, a terrorist attack… a myriad of possible reasons why the signals have all gone dead. But, there is a noise, a noise that empties people out, erases them.

Gander explores our dependence on communication, our need for the worldwide net and the feeling of connection that it creates. Told through a conversation, Gander’s microfiction distances the reader from their connection to communication technology, pushes the reader through this snapshot of text to question the dependence we have on information and our need to feel connected. What do we do with dead air?

Gander asks the reader how permeable we have become to sound, to information. How as a society of listeners, do we cope with silence, with not knowing?

You can access “White Noise” online at AEscifi http://aescifi.ca/index.php/fiction/35-short-stories/1998-white-noise

Check out the weblink… I can ALMOST promise you that Geoff Gander’s story won’t hollow you out with whitenoise.

You can explore Geoff Gander’s website at geoffgander.wordpress.com.

Derek Newman-Stille

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