This paper presents a case of a digital device – a noise app – employed by a wind farm operator as a response to growing noise annoyance by residents living next to their wind farm in the Netherlands. This noise app communicates predicted sound levels to the residents and monitors their noise annoyance. We analyse the noise app as a digital framing device that governs concerns around wind turbine sound through three processes: capturing, channelling and managing. We show how in the process of capturing, the app uses a particular definition of ‘the public’ and construes ‘noise’ as a matter of concern. We use the term channelling to highlight who is involved in the interpretation of the data about annoyance, and how certain conclusions come to be seen as legitimate. Finally, we discuss how in the process of managing, specific kinds of solutions are proposed that fit with this problem definition. The framing process of the noise app also leads to unforeseen effects in the form of overflows. Particularly, we see that concerned residents develop an expectation to be more actively involved in decision-making around the wind farm, and that residents resort to alternative forms and channels for expressing existing and new concerns. We conclude by reflecting on the broader energy justice implications of digital framing and overflowing in terms of recognition justice, procedural justice, and distributional justice.
- Wind turbine noise
- Digital devices