I think the 2016 movie, “Nerve” starring Emma Roberts should be featured in the DCI curriculum because it shows the power of the internet and its ability to make people obsessed with their online appearance and inability to take defeat. This online truth or dare game becomes very personal for many of the high schoolers involved in it to the point that money is given as rewards and taken directly from bank accounts for failure. This movie fully depicts the idea that people desire fame through social media and just like in today’s world, going digitally famous is something that every teen wants in order to become more popular and accepted by their peers.
I think it would fit really well with the discussion we had about the impact technology has on one’s desire to uphold an accepted, sometimes fake appearance to claim respect and popularity from others. Similar to the Black Mirror “Nosedive” episode that we watched for class, “Nerve” depicts the negative impact digital culture has on one’s ability to separate what’s truly important to them versus what they want people to think is important to them, two things that seem to be very different for most people. This transparency is often masked by the world’s technological growth as there are so many ways to indulge in every aspect of our digital culture, particularly for the worst. In addition to the “Nosedive” episode this would also connect well to The Guardian article, “Facebook Told Advertisers It Can Identify Teens Feeling ‘insecure’ and ‘Worthless’” by Sam Levin, as it demonstrates a group of teenagers who continue their participation in an online game that they are aware is dangerous, yet continue to play anyway in order to avoid feeling worthless.
This episode further covers topics we have discussed in class such as online surveillance. Throughout the truth or dare game, every action, both physically and digitally, undertaken by the “players” is monitored by the “watchers” with the internet being the main source of communication between these two groups involved in the game. Just like social media platforms have for many people around the world today, this online truth or dare came has too, become an obsession amongst the players.
I feel this addition to DCI180 could be very beneficial as it is yet another media source that explores our digital culture’s ability to promote self-indulgence. The situation described in the movie is definitely an example of something that could potentially occur in today’s world and is something that should be recognized in order to prevent such thing from occurring.