'Black Mirror' Brings Us A Reminder About Online Culture

'Black Mirror' Brings Us A Reminder About Online Culture

What we need to learn from the third season's final episode, "Hated in the Nation."

In "Hated in the Nation," the final episode of the third season of "Black Mirror" lies an important, if unnecessary, blatant and unsubtle message. The final episode of the show details the investigation of a detective in relation to the mysterious and odd death of a journalist, whose husband claims that she slit her own throat with a broken piece of glass. But before delving into the details, a little bit of background: In this futuristic world, bees have become extinct and to compensate for this the government has allowed the creation of artificially intelligent bees, robot bees, which function essentially the same way in terms of pollination. Now back to the story, inside the woman’s head, following an autopsy, one of these bees is found. Essentially the bee had lodged itself into the pain center of the woman’s brain and caused such excruciating pain that she killed herself.

Barely a day later another person dies the same way; a bee burrows itself inside a man's head. Although he is sedated before he can cause himself harm, when the doctors perform a CT scan to figure out what’s wrong with him, the machine, acting as a giant magnet, rips the bee out of his head, killing him. The common thread? They both did something offensive; the journalist wrote an offensive article on a disabled rights activist and the man, a famous singer, insulted a young fan of his, inciting a strong response from the online mob. It is quickly discovered that the bees have essentially been hacked, and they are being directed through a hashtag. It is a game of consequences which states that if you post #DeathTo followed by the name of the person and their photo, by the end of the day the individual mentioned the most will be killed.

It is also discovered that the man behind all of this was involved initially in the creation of these bees. His coworker and roommate had been the subject of the online mob's rage after posting a seemingly offensive photo online, due to this she had attempted to commit suicide, and he was the one that found her and saved her life. As it turns out, in the end, the real targets were never the people that had done said perceivably offensive things online; but rather all those that used the hashtag on another person, 37,000 people, all of whom used the hashtag were eventually themselves attacked by the bees and killed. The tortured metaphor is not a subtle one, the one story, out of thousands, that it brought to mind was that of Justine Sacco, the woman that tweeted the juvenile and stupid joke: “Going to Africa. Hope I don’t get AIDs. Just kidding. I’m white!” Little was she aware of what followed as she was on her flight:

“Sacco’s Twitter feed had become a horror show. 'In light of @Justine-Sacco disgusting racist tweet, I’m donating to @care today' and 'How did @JustineSacco get a PR job?! Her level of racist ignorance belongs on Fox News. #AIDS can affect anyone!' and 'I’m an IAC employee and I don’t want @JustineSacco doing any communications on our behalf ever again. Ever.' And then one from her employer, IAC, the corporate owner of The Daily Beast, OKCupid and Vimeo: 'This is an outrageous, offensive comment. Employee in question currently unreachable on an intl flight.' The anger soon turned to excitement: 'All I want for Christmas is to see @JustineSacco’s face when her plane lands and she checks her inbox/voicemail' and 'Oh man, @JustineSacco is going to have the most painful phone-turning-on moment ever when her plane lands' and 'We are about to watch this @JustineSacco bitch get fired. In REAL time. Before she even KNOWS she’s getting fired.'"

"Black Mirror" took this growing trend of Internet social warriorism to its extreme, but the point still remains. Justine was just one of the hundreds or thousands of others who made the fatal mistake of posting something stupid, ignorant, or offensive in the intent of humor, and having that one mistake essentially end their life. It accentuates this mob mentality that often comes about on the Internet, a trend that very much needs to change.

Cover Image Credit: Tom Sodoge / Unsplash

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20 Fun Facts To Use When Introducing Yourself

As we embark on the semester, we are put on the spot in order to share interesting details about ourselves. This article discloses possible fun facts to tell others!

After experiencing my first week of classes, I have learned that every student needs a handy-dandy list of fun facts about themselves to tell other people. Many professors use the first couple of classes to learn about their students, so you may need to think about who you are and how you want to introduce yourself to your professor and classmates. We all have that one go-to interesting fact about ourselves, but sometimes you just have to mix it up!

1. My favorite hobby is...

What do you do in your free time? Personally, I love to stay active! I am a competitive Latin dancer and enjoy teaching and taking Zumba classes, going to the gym, and hiking.

2. I love...

Is there something, someone, or somewhere that you love? What makes your heart ache? What do you miss when it's gone? I can say that I love my friends because I feel my most confident when I'm surrounded by those who love and support me.

3. I look up to...

Is there someone you adore? Who mesmerizes you? Who do you wish to learn from? After watching "A Ballerina's Tale," I discovered Misty Copeland. In 2015 she became the first African American ballet dancer to become the Female Principal Dancer at American Ballet Theatre. Her passion, grace, and strength continuously motivate me to better myself as an athlete and an individual.

4. This art speaks to me because...

Coco Chanel said, "In order to be irreplaceable one must always be different." This encourages me to always follow my heart no matter what. I will never follow society's standards and norms because they do not define me. Chanel's saying definitely influences my character and lifestyle.

5. A funny and/or embarrassing memory of me is...

When you make others laugh they want to spend time and make memories with you! Don't be afraid to embarrass yourself. You will come off as down to earth, easy-going, and loyal.

6. My siblings or lack thereof influenced me by...

I can go on and on about my brother, who is 10 years older than I. We have opposite personalities and despite the age gap, we're quite close.

7. My pet(s) are my life because...

Only sad people don't like hearing about furry creatures, even if your pets are slimy and slithering creatures all human beings enjoy hearing pet tales!

8. I'm afraid of...

Your personality can be revealed by your likes and dislikes, including the things that you fear. I am terrified of change and the unknown, hence, the future is an anxiety-inducing topic to discuss for me.

9. I am the way I am because...

What have you gone through in life that has shaped you into who you are today? Remember to be open minded and allow yourself to open up to your peers. You may be surprised by how others respond and/or what others have endured as well.

10. The most unusual item that can be found in your dorm...

This is a fun fact about yourself that can easily liven up an awkward conversation. Think about your quirks and differences! One item I have in my dorm is my teddy bear, Peter, whom I like to joke is my boyfriend.

11. My dream job is...

In college, "What's your major?" is a widespread question. Nonetheless, skip the boring statement of "I'm majoring in..." and go in depth on what your dream job is (hopefully your major factors in to this dream of yours).

12. My hidden talents are...

Angelina Jolie is a knife thrower. Kendall Jenner can produce bird noises. Amanda Seyfried can crochet and knit. Is there anything special you can do? Some people have rare and unique talents, maybe you can think of some hidden talents of your own!

13. My guilty pleasure is...

I will say it a million times: don't be shy when introducing yourself to new people! I'll start by divulging my guilty pleasure: Youtube's family vlogging channel, "OKBaby"!

Check them out: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCvUCbnwzySKgbKiB_...

14. Some activities on my bucket list are...

This is an easy way to grab people's attention and find others with similar desires as you. Be an adventurer! Go out of your comfort zone!

15. Talk about your best friend...

How would your best friend describe you? What do you love to do with your best friend?

16. Talk about an accomplishment of yours...

You are incredible and have achieved so much! Reveal something that you are proud of — show off a little!

17. This one time at my job...

Bosses breathing down your neck. Curious coworkers asking personal questions. Cursing customers who never leave you alone. Your job can be filled with tons of hilarious situations that can easily entertain a crowd.

18. During the summer...

Any scars with stories? Any summer flings? Any lessons learned from the tanning too long? Now that summer is over, disclose memories that can leave positive impressions on others.

19. I volunteer at...

Do you do any community service? Share a funny moment while you were volunteering. What did you learn while there? Would you continue?

20. [blank] is meaningful to me because...

What do you appreciate in life? What brightens your day? What makes you fall in love? What does someone have to do to make you smile?

Finally, remember to be outgoing! Reveal that three-mile smile and open your arms to learning about others. Spread smiles, love, and happiness.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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A Love Letter To The Oxford Comma

Something that needs to be said.


My dearest love,

I know what it's like to feel unneeded, unwanted, and like if you disappeared forever, no one would know the difference. But I need you to know something—I would notice.

Sometimes people leave you out, not considering how it makes you feel. They're simply searching for leisure, style, or the satisfaction of others—all things that should pale in comparison when it comes to what you can provide.

You provide clarity and consistency. Elegance and intelligence. You are a light in my life. Without you, I feel dazed, confused, disappointed, angry, and hopeless.

But I know that I have to stay strong. I must, for you, because you are a force worth fighting for, but you're just not strong enough to fight for yourself. I must take it upon myself to fight for your rights, your justice, and your very life.

Whenever you are absent, I will bring you forth from your lonesome despair and reprimand the doer of this dreadful deed. Whenever I can, I will speak of you kindly in intellectual conversations with my peers. And above all, I will never ever fail to remember you and utilize you, for the benefit and integrity of both of our combined works and efforts.

I don't know how this monstrosity that is your common exclusion started, but by all means possible, I will attempt to put it to an end. I knew from the minute I saw you that I would love you forever, and someday, the sooner the better at that, the rest of the world will appreciate you in the same way I do.

I am not certain about many things, but if I am certain about one, it is you. Bid me good wishes in our joint endeavor, as I bid the same for you. Godspeed, my love.

Forever you obedient servant, faithful admirer, and steadfast warrior,

Aaron Doss

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