How to Virtually Attend and Participate in Burning Man

Photo: beersonic, Shutterstock
Photo: beersonic, Shutterstock

Each year, tens of thousands of people descend upon Nevada’s Black Rock Desert the week leading up to U.S. Labour Day to take part in Burning Man. Since 1986, like-minded Burners have gathered together in the name of decommodification, radical inclusion, radical self-expression, and the rest of their 10 Principles (though weren’t actually written down until 2004).

But don’t call it a festival. Per their website (bold theirs): “Burning Man is not a festival. Burning Man is a community. A temporary city. A global cultural movement based on 10 practical principles.” Unfortunately, this temporary city won’t be built this year — at least not physically. That’s right: Burning Man is going virtual. Here’s what you need to know about attending and participating in Burning Man 2020.

How to virtually attend Burning Man

We are currently at the end of Burn Week, which started on September 1 and ends on September 7. But don’t worry, there’s still plenty going on over the next two days, including the (Virtual) Temple Burn at 1:00 p.m. AEST on Monday. The first step is to visit Burning Man’s new platform, Kindling. There you’ll find links to not only the Temple Burn, but also a 24-hour online multi-Burn gathering featuring clips from people’s at-home burns around the world (more on that in a minute).

Kindling also allows users to sign up for one of eight universes in their Multiverse, operating similarly to theme camps at the in-person events. If you’re not sure which to join, here’s a video that might help:

According to the Reno Gazette Journal, most of these universes will have their own Man Burn.

How to virtually participate in Burning Man

If watching other people conduct burns doesn’t cut it, Kindling also has posted a set of instructions and blueprints so you can build your own man to burn. The page also comes with a set of disclaimers, including: “In keeping with the Radical Self-Reliance Principle, you are building and burning at your own risk. You are responsible for ensuring the safety of your burn, and Burning Man Project is not liable for any loss or damage that may occur.”

And, of course, there’s a note on fire safety, specifically on not starting a fire in an area prone to or currently experiencing wildfires. If you do decide to construct your own man to burn, please do it responsibly.

Log in to comment on this story!