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Is China Getting Ideas From “Black Mirror”?

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Black Mirror. Season 3. Episode 1. Nosedive.


A society where your life literally revolves around your phone, and you have to be nice to everyone.




This society has adapted a system whereby every interaction you make is rated out of five stars. Literally every interaction. With your friend, boss, Uber driver, mailman, waiter, everyone.


This might be acceptable except that your ratings determines/limits what you can or can not do. For example, where you live, what you can buy, what you can rent, where you can go etc.


This system does not work like a credit score where pretty much only you knows what it is. No, everyone who has a phone can see your rating. Therefore, leading to high levels of discrimination and desperation to increase your ratings no matter what.


So, I was watching the news recently and apparently China is developing a similar system that is intended to be fully launched in 2020, if all goes as planned. To start, it is supposed to put a ban on those with “bad credits” on train and air travel, a ban that could possibly go as long a year.


While it might be really cool, the Chinese government did not actually get this idea from “Black Mirror.” The start of this process is said to have started before the episode “Nosedive” was even aired. Rather than social interaction as it is in “Black Mirror,” this credit is going to depend on things like online activity and criminal records.


Can a system like this actually be beneficial to a government and its citizens? Or is a going to be another step into the downfall of today’s society?


Abby Olaleye is a junior at the University of Kentucky. I'm currently majoring in Biosystems Engineering with a minor in Biomedical Engineering. I'm a writer for HerCampus because writing is fun and a better way to procastinate. 
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