Whether you’re looking to gain insight on what the course entails or want suggestions to add to your watch library, here are a list of recommended films and shows to watch before joining a Digital Media & Culture BA!
From e-hailing to augmented reality, the Black Mirror series offers a wide palette of stories that sheds light on the potential adverse and unexpected impacts of technology on people and society. Many of the episodes scratch the surface of themes discussed in the course, such as surveillance capitalism and the gamification of life, and will likely leave you thinking whether these tales are as fictitious as they seem.
The Social Dilemma
Recently released in 2020, The Social Dilemma is a documentary that dives deep into the world of the largest technology companies as experts from the field uncover the hidden consequences of using these platforms. This is a great introductory look into algorithm manipulation and how features on these platforms are deliberately designed to foster an addiction amongst users in order to harvest their data.
The Great Hack
The Great Hack takes a similar stride with The Social Dilemma in highlighting the issues with big data, as it explores how Cambridge Analytica and Facebook exploited the data of millions of people amidst the US Presidential Elections in 2016. The documentary focuses on how the data of voters was mined and used against them to fuel propaganda during the elections, and intrinsically exhibits how the rise of digital technologies is becoming more prominent, particularly within government and politics.
If you’re looking for a more light-hearted film, Her follows the journey of a lonely man who rediscovers self-love and love for others through a romantic experience with an artificial intelligence named Samantha. This movie begs the question of the future of A.I., and whether we might see a transcendence of machine-learning A.I. beyond simply assisting humans in their day-to-day lives into something more personal and intimate.
The Age of A.I.
Hosted by none other than “genius, billionaire, playboy, philanthropist” Tony Stark, a.k.a Robert Downey Jr., the documentary YouTube series The Age of A.I. aims to educate and simplify concepts relating to A.I., machine learning and new-age technology. Additionally, they showcase these ground-breaking technologies and their application in a multitude of fields, such as healthcare, education and day-to-day living. This series not only provides an avenue for discovering up-and-coming occupations, but shows the profound impact that new technologies have on our lives as we become increasingly dependent on these tools.
For diehard animation fans, Disney Pixar’s WALL-E is a 2008 Disney film that draws upon many of the themes which you will find throughout the course. This may seem like an unconventional choice, but the film depicts a future where human lives are governed by machinery and technology, with characters and settings that blur the line between technology and what it means to be human. The big question of ‘how convenient is too convenient’ arises as humans in the film are extremely dependent on technology, which has resulted in them caring for little besides themselves.
To find out more about what Digital Culture is, click here
To read Dana’s blog post, ‘Why Study a Digital Media & Culture BA?’, click here
To read Jiawen’s blog post, ‘A Day in the Life of a Digital Media & Culture BA student’, click here
To learn about Digital Media & Culture career options, click here
To find out more about studying Digital Media & Culture at King’s, click here
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