Facts About Life That Prove ‘Black Mirror’ Is Closer To Our Reality Than We Realize
Marc Gordon - August 27, 2019

Have You Earned Your Tomorrow

By Edgar Guest

Is anybody happier because you passed his way? Does anyone remember that you spoke to him today? This day is almost over, and its toiling time is through; Is there anyone to utter now a kindly word of you?

Did you give a cheerful greeting to the friend who came along? Or a churlish sort of "Howdy" and then vanish in the throng? Were you selfish pure and simple as you rushed along the way, Or is someone mighty grateful for a deed you did today?

Can you say tonight, in parting with the day that's slipping fast, That you helped a single brother of the many that you passed? Is a single heart rejoicing over what you did or said; Does a man whose hopes were fading now with courage look ahead?

Did you waste the day, or lose it, was it well or sorely spent? Did you leave a trail of kindness or a scar of discontent? As you close your eyes in slumber do you think that God would say, You have earned one more tomorrow by the work you did today?

Although the sci-fi stories of the Black Mirror TV series are intended to be fictional, they do in fact represent a certain reality of our world or at least the fact that we are on our way there – far more than we would like to believe. The unfortunate dark side of real-life technologies is shown on the show,  with certain examples so unsettling that they make us question what the future holds for us.  With just another advancement or two in technology,  we may very well find ourselves living in a real-life Black Mirror…

 

Deceased Chatbots

 

 

In the Black Mirror episode of ‘Be Right Back’ a heart-shattered woman decided to bring her dead partner back to life (as much as possible) by creating a synthetic replacement of him, using his online chat history in order to make him as real as possible.  Believe it or not, reality has it, that in 2016, Eugenia Kudya actually managed to bring her deceased best friend ‘back to life.  She collected all of his text messages and history on social media in order to create an Artificial Intelligence chatbot that was similar to her partner as could be.  Sci-fi fantasies at its finest.

 

 

Ratings On Social Status

 

 

In the Black Mirror episode ‘Nosedive’ people are defined by the ratings that they are given by others based on their actions. The higher the rating, the better the social status one is given, and the more access and opportunities one is given. Without a high enough rating, people are not capable of virtually anything.  While it sounds crazy, it’s not too far off from reality, with popular social media apps such as Instagram and Uber using ratings and likes in order to determine our status.  What hits home, even more, is China’s current development of a Social Credit System, which is intended to rate people on many aspects such as their financial situations and political views. 

 

Children Tracking

 

 

In the Black Mirror episode ‘Arkangel’ parents implant a chip into their children in order to keep track of their every move. Parents are even given the ability to blur out certain images for their children’s discretion. In the episode, a highly overprotective mother watches her daughter’s every move as she grows up, ending in a less than pleasant situation for both of them. Reality has it that many apps enable parents to track the locations of their children, and even to see what their children are looking at on the internet. Scientists at UC Berkley are also currently working on a system that allows for visual experiences to be reconstructed – although it’s still in the making, it seems uncomfortably similar to Black Mirror.

 

 

Cyberbullying

 

 

In the Black Mirror episode of ‘Shut Up and Dance’ hackers make their way into the webcam of a young boy. After spying on him and catching him doing some embarrassing things, they blackmail him into doing a variety of dangerous tasks, such as robbing a bank and even harming others. Unfortunately, cyberbullying is nothing short of a reality today, with hackers constantly stealing the personal information of innocent people. Although the episode may have been slightly dramatized, it explores the vast power hackers can obtain, and how they can ruin your life. 

 

Virtual Reality

 

 

In the Black Mirror episode ‘San Junipero’ people live their fantasies in a virtual city. People upload their brains into a computer and are then able to feel as though they are living their wildest dreams, even after death. One of the characters even chose to die in order to be with her friend in the virtual world of San Junipero.  As crazy as this may sound, Nectome, a startup is the starting stages of a service that can potentially upload minds and preserve brains. The aim of the startup is to bring back the consciousness of the dead in the future by digitalizing their brains.

 

 

Self Driving Cars

 

 

In the Black Mirror episode ”Crocodile” a self-driving pizza delivery truck crashes into a pedestrian, leading to series of unfortunate events. Regardless of whether or not you’ve seen this episode, the reality is that Toyota and Pizza Hut have recently announced that they will be launching a partnership with their first self-delivery vehicle. Furthermore, in addition, back in 2018, a self-driving Uber car killed an innocent woman, as the sensor did not sense her walking by. Automated food delivery services only continue to grow: food for thought.