At it’s inception, Black Mirror was a show which dismantled perceptions to reflect the darkest fringes of modern society back to its audience.
From the beginning of series two, the focus shifted slightly. While the show maintained its comments on society, these became more and more focused through the idea of technology and what it has done and is doing to humanity.
Viewers have cringed in horror at VR creations, cried with joy at a virtual afterlife, and quivered with terror at the idea of being rated for their actions.
In Black Mirror‘s view, increased prevalence of technology in our lives rarely leads to positive outcomes. Few episodes of the series don’t end with tragic consequences for their protagonists.
However, it seems that some viewers actually are interested in trying out the speculative technology featured on the show. A worrisome thought, considering that some of that technology might not be too far away…
Which of the speculative technologies from Black Mirror would people actually use?
British market research firm YouGov quizzed 1,714 people about whether they’d try Black Mirror‘s technology.
Respondents could rate each piece of technology based on how likely they’d be to use it. They could rate from very unlikely to very likely. And it seems that some pieces of technology are more popular than others.
Based on the respondents who said they’d be either likely or very likely to use the tech, these are the percentages of respondents who’d use Black Mirror‘s technology.
Which Black Mirror technologies would Brits actually be willing to use? The most popular, at 29%, is an implant that would allow you to record everything you saw and heard so you could re-watch the footage later (as featured in The Entire History of You) https://t.co/ihUWBHy8v3 pic.twitter.com/XXFQLfVTRl
— YouGov (@YouGov) January 29, 2018
It’s worth noting that the majority of respondents would not use the technology.
Even for the most popular piece of technology, 71 percent would not use it. Probably the wisest section of the population, if Black Mirror creator Charlie Brooker had anything to say about it.
Still, for those who haven’t seen Black Mirror, the most popular piece of technology was the grain.
This was an implant that allowed its users to record, rewatch, and delete their memories.
The device eventually sent the protagonist of the episode, The Entire History Of You, mad and ruined his life. He was able to use the technology to catch his wife cheating and learned his daughter was another man’s.
Other popular ideas included the virtual afterlife as seen in San Junipero and the implants allowing people to see out of another person’s eyes as seen in Archangel.
The least popular speculative technology was the societal rating app seen in Nosedive. This assigned everyone a rating, akin to that of Uber drivers and people could rate each other.
Those with higher ratings qualified for perks and better treatment in society. Perhaps it fared the worst because people are concerned their own ratings wouldn’t be great…
Still, though the majority wouldn’t try Black Mirror technology, it’s slightly worrying that some would.