Portal connecting Dublin and New York 'reawakens' under new restrictions

By John Mercury May 20, 2024

A portal which links people in Dublin and New York via a live stream has been reactivated after “mooning” and other inappropriate behaviour was reported.

The artwork had been temporarily shut due to “inappropriate behaviour” which included people flashing body parts to the camera, swearing and displaying images of 9/11.

The portal has now reopened with set times of operation – 6am to 4pm in New York City and 11am to 9pm in Dublin.

In a bid to tackle antisocial behaviour at the installation, the team behind it – Portals.org – has adopted a “proximity-based solution” whereby if people now try stepping on the portal and block the camera, it will trigger a blurring of the live stream on both sides of the Atlantic.

In New York, the portal will continue to have on-site security during all hours of operation, while fencing has been installed to help with crowd management.

In Dublin, “physical design features” are being put in place to assist with the crowds.

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The interactive artwork drew the attention of tens of thousands after it opened at the start of the month – and received nearly two billion online hits.

But while the majority of people felt a “sense of joy and connectedness” – solutions were subsequently sought to crack down on the inappropriate behaviour of a small minority of people in front of the portal.

‘I invite communities to care about their portals’

The portal has now “reawakened”, a joint statement from Dublin City Council, Portals.org and the Flatiron NoMad Partnership said.

“The team will continue making updates as needed to ensure that everyone can continue to enjoy the portal.”

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Portals.org artist and founder Benediktas Gylys said: “As humans we are creating the portals experience together.

“I invite local communities not only to enjoy but to care about their portals and how other community members are approaching the sculptures.”

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