Based on the IG account archiving dealer’s texts, this film explores how young people are swiping and hashtagging to score
The way we’re scoring gear is evolving: we’re bored of skulking the smoking area, desperately awaiting the dulcet, husky mumblings of “Charlie, Charlie”. And we’re really over spending three hours in an alley beside Co-Op, anticipating the awkward handshake/baggy pass when Jay Green finally shows up with something that resembles a slab of concrete.
Now, people are buying their drugs on Instagram, Twitter and even Tinder, according to a recent report by the Guardian. It’s what’s essentially the biggest up shake for those selling and procuring drugs since Nokia’s inclusion of two SIM holders for all your trap phone needs. i_shotta is a film by Dan Emmerson that’s charting this modern phenomenon.
Making use of actual texts archived on the Instagram account @shotta_texts_ldn, Emmerson traces the evolution of our service culture, that’s allowing dealers to be “visible in a hidden space”. Dealers are now able to build an online brand to sell their goods and provide home deliveries, preferable to hanging outside the kebab shops on Kingsland Road in the early hours to pull new clients.
“People are crafty,” observes Emmerson. “I'm sure that every app that comes out in the next few years is going to be rinsed by drug dealers. There are still new accounts popping up daily, so it doesn't seem to be slowing down.”
“It's jokes that Tinder and Grindr is being used too. Someone told me they knew some guys that used Uber in some way.”