‘The Social Dilemma,’ a Netflix original, joins the ranks of momentous documentaries that have been synonymous with the streaming service in recent years, and why not? A well-rounded documentary is the best approach to portray the core of a tale. Since its beginnings, social media has been a talking point, and while its accessibility benefits humanity, our crippling reliance on it is evident. ‘The Social Dilemma,’ created by Jeff Orlowski, examines how addiction and privacy breaches are features, not defects, of social media networks.
The video goes the extra mile to explain things by presenting fragments of conversations with a few people who helped establish social media but are now concerned about the impact it has on users’ mental health. If you enjoyed ‘The Social Dilemma,’ and want to see more powerful documentaries, we’ve got you covered. While the majority of the documentaries on this list argue for keeping the Internet at a safe distance, if only to protect your mental health, we’ve included a couple that are as thought-provoking and important.
Our Planet (2019)
‘Our Planet,’ a British documentary film narrated by Sir David Attenborough, a world-renowned natural historian and broadcaster, is a thought-provoking and painstakingly researched portrayal of our culpability in the decline of nature. This documentary, which was made possible by the joint efforts of a 600-member crew that toiled for more than 3,500 filming days across 50 nations, will make you admire mother nature’s majesty while simultaneously calling attention to the perilous ways we’ve been abusing her. You’ll be left with nothing except a rush of creativity to help you keep it alive.
Period. End of Sentence. (2018)
‘Period. End of Sentence.’ is an inspiring and instructive video about women’s health in rural Indian areas, where menstruation is still a taboo subject. It follows a group of rural Indian women as they develop their own low-cost feminine hygiene products and gain financial independence. The Academy Award-winning film raises awareness by exposing the shame associated with menstruation in a country where 23 percent of girls drop out of school once their periods arrive.
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‘Startup.com,’ a film from the early days of the internet, exposes the fragile status of the revolution, in which hard economic realities and failed promises have replaced flamboyant aspirations and visions of immediate fortune. The documentary manages to humanize this situation with penetratingly private perspectives of the people involved, thanks to honest storytelling and an intimate cinéma-vérité technique. As the story progresses, you’ll notice that ‘Startup.com’ is a voyeuristic interpretation of the proverb “no good act goes unpunished.”
The American Meme (2018)
‘The American Meme’ examines the contemporary state of internet popularity and celebrity culture, as well as the lives of people who have turned social media into a marketplace for their own commodification and adulation. The film includes in-depth interviews with a few of the most well-known online celebrities in recent years. It allows us to see how they develop empires or, more accurately, how they earn the coveted blue tick, as well as the monetary and personal benefits that come with living on Instagram’s page.
The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin (2014)
‘The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin’ tells the story of how Bitcoin, an open-source digital currency, may be utilized in a variety of ways. Transactions may be sent swiftly via the Internet while utilizing Bitcoin. They are recorded in the blockchain, a public ledger. The film spans several years, following the currency’s development from the first global Bitcoin transaction in 2010 through its meteoric rise in 2013. ‘The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin’ is an excellent introduction to the digital money for people who are new with it.
Terms and Conditions May Apply (2013)
Cullen Hoback, a filmmaker, exposes the erosion of online privacy and what personal information governments and numerous internet firms – such as ISPs, e-commerce websites, search engines, and social media networks – are lawfully taking from consumers on a regular basis. ‘Terms & Conditions May Apply’ looks into the ramifications of our unwitting surrender every time we inadvertently click the ‘Agree’ button on those lengthy, and sometimes unread, internet user contracts. Even the most oblivious spectator should be roused by the topic of this quietly scorching documentary.
The Great Hack (2019)
‘The Great Hack,’ directed by Karim Amer and Jehane Noujaim, tells the story of the well publicized Facebook-Cambridge Analytica data scandal. It shows how, as reported by journalist Carole Cadwalladr, this data corporation came to symbolize the dark side of social media in the aftermath of the 2016 US Presidential Elections. The documentary sheds light on how data is weaponized for political benefit and what it means for the future by providing a window into data-driven decisions made by massive corporations. This serves as a reminder of why we should be paying great attention to this issue. So, if you haven’t seen it yet, we strongly advise you to do so right soon!
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