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In a short span of time, our lives have been transformed by mobile phones and internet technologies — what does this mean, particularly for a generation who’s never known anything else? Beeban Kidron’s timely and insightful documentary encourages us to think critically about our adoption of technology.
In a short span of time, our lives have been
transformed by mobile phones and internet
technologies that connect us to each other
and to the world. What does that mean,
particularly for a generation that has never
known anything else?
After observing the immersive behaviour
of her own teenagers, director Beeban
Kidron set out to answer the question:
What exactly is the internet, and how is
it changing us? She talks directly to teens
about how technology shapes their expectations
of friendship, their cognition, and
their sexuality. She interviews experts
including Wikipedia's Jimmy Wales, writer
Clay Shirky, Microsoft researcher danah
boyd, and the MIT Media Lab's Nicholas
Negroponte. Her timely investigation also
raises questions about the implications of
data collection and who profits from it.
Since these hot buttons are bound to
prompt further conversation, the film will be
followed by an extended talk with the British
director. In her eclectic career, Kidron's
work has ranged from crowd-pleasing comedy
(Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason) to
bracing documentaries (Hookers, Hustlers,
Pimps and Their Johns). She writes in a
director's statement, "I thought the cultural
shake-up was something to embrace not
fear — but all around me were young people
attached to their phones like a third limb.
Their social rules were different, their
behaviour was different, and they seemed
to think nothing of the fact that everything
they ever did, thought, listened to or Googled
was sitting in a cloud…somewhere."
InRealLife encourages us not to be passive
in our adoption of technology, but to
think critically and make smart choices.
- Beeban Kidron
- Beeban Kidron was born in London.
She studied at the National Film and
Television School and co-founded
the educational charity FILMCLUB.
Her directing credits include the
fiction features Used People (92),
To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything!
Julie Newmar (95), Bridget Jones:
The Edge of Reason (04), and the
documentary features Hookers,
Hustlers, Pimps and Their Johns (93),
Sex, Death and the Gods (11), and