The philosophy of the “Black Mirror”: A revolution in the minds up and down

Vladimir V. Sliusarev
Nation­al Research Lobachevsky State Uni­ver­si­ty of Nizh­ni Nov­gorod

The phi­los­o­phy of the “Black Mir­ror”: A rev­o­lu­tion in the minds up and down…

Abstract. The arti­cle con­sid­ers the prospects for the evolv­ing infor­ma­tion and com­mu­ni­ca­tion tech­nolo­gies bas­ing on the British sci­ence fic­tion TV series “Black Mir­ror”. The con­tem­po­rary devel­op­ment of the tech­nolo­gies and the glob­al lev­el of their dis­tri­b­u­tion allow us to talk about rev­o­lu­tion­ary changes in the struc­ture of soci­ety. The Inter­net, mobile com­mu­ni­ca­tions, the abil­i­ty to accu­mu­late and ana­lyze large amounts of infor­ma­tion (Big Data), the inte­gra­tion of con­sump­tion into web-resources, and the devel­op­ment of AI-like sys­tems make a com­bi­na­tion of fac­tors that encour­ages a num­ber of schol­ars to speak about the for­ma­tion of the Sixth tech­no­log­i­cal par­a­digm. Along with it, the ques­tion of such tech­nolo­gies most­ly turns out “over­board” from human­i­tar­i­an exper­tise, since eco­nom­ic ben­e­fits pre­vail over con­sid­er­a­tions of human­ness. Obvi­ous that the socio-cul­tur­al impli­ca­tions of tech-nol­o­gy imple­men­ta­tion have a long-term per-spec­tive, and it is prac­ti­cal­ly impos­si­ble to pre­dict how the soci­ety will change. The “Black Mir­ror” attempts to envis­age not so much the tech­no­log­i­cal changes but the influ­ence of ICT on soci­ety in the long term. Pro­ceed­ing from the cur­rent trends in robot­ics, tech­nolo­gies of vir­tu­al and aug­ment­ed real­i­ties (VR and AR), med­ical func­tion­al diag­nos­tics and psy­chophys­i­ol­o­gy, the cre­ators of this TV series antic­i­pate some trends in the devel­op­ment of tech­nol­o­gy. A glob­al pro­jec­tion of one or more of these trends rep­re­sents an agen­da for a pos­si­ble future. Along with it, the authors focus on a cer­tain tech­no-para­noia that exists in con­tem­po­rary mass cul­ture. In this way not tech­ni­cal and tech­no­log­i­cal aspects but ra-ther some pro­jec­tive ethics of the future and future gen­er­a­tions appears “on the sur­face” first of all. Such issues seem quite rel­e­vant giv­en the rapid evo­lu­tion and imple­men­ta­tion of tech­nolo­gies. An attempt to crit­i­cal­ly eval­u­ate their impact sug­gests that they mere­ly man­i­fest human social­i­ty. Nev­er­the­less, the author empha­sizes the impor­tance of assess­ing the social and hu-man­i­tar­i­an con­se­quences of tech­nol­o­gy devel­op­ment, since mod­ern ICTs are no less a threat than atom­ic physics or phar­ma­col­o­gy.

Key­words: Black Mir­ror, utopia, dig­i­tal­iza­tion, vir­tu­al real­i­ty, medi­are­al­i­ty, dystopia, Social Cred­it Sys­tem, Infor­ma­tion and Com­mu­ni­ca­tion Tech­nolo­gies, arti­fi­cial intel­li­gence

DOI: 10.5840/dspl2019212

The report­ed study was fund­ed by RFBR with­in the research project № 18–011-00335.


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