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Must Watch Internet Culture Documentaries

These must watch internet culture documentaries will shed light on the boundless prospect on the other side of our screens.

By Bjorn BjornsonPublished 7 years ago 5 min read

The technological age has given way to massive paradigm shifts in our daily lives. A new era of communication, sharing, and anonymity is upon us. As everyone finds their niche internet culture, it becomes easier to lose sight of the potential the internet has. But if we look at all that has come before and what is happening now, we stand a better chance of understanding what it is exactly we get when we hit 'enter' on the keyboard. These must watch internet culture documentaries will shed light on the seemingly boundless prospect on the other side of our screens.

Most avid internet-goers don't realize the full scope of what occurs when they search Google, state their opinion, or post a picture. Like it or not, using your favorite free platform means you sacrifice your privacy. Your information is at the hands of the highest bidder when you happily send snaps or sign up for social media sites, such as Facebook. Using films, shows, news archives, and political interviews, Terms and Conditions May Apply examines the information gathering age of the internet. If you don't like the notion of all your favorite websites recording your time and selling your information, then it may be time to brush up on your knowledge.

The 21st century has seen a boom in valuable video game development and online interaction. From consoles to cell phones, the landscape of play has evolved to become the most widespread it has ever been. With the arrival internet age, independent developers have found they can create their nuttiest ideas. Indie Game: The Movie is a must watch internet culture documentary. It tells the story of the development of Braid, Super Meat Boy, and Fez, three acclaimed games that helped spark the indie development boom. Explore the challenges and triumphs faced by small development teams with dreams on the level with those of AAA studios.

Craigslist Joe answers the age old question “Can you survive off of craigslist alone?” Yes, you can. Craigslist is the "classifieds" of the internet. Users can offer or request all manner of services, goods, discussion, and so on. This must watch internet culture documentary follows Joseph Garner’s successful journey across the U.S. spending no money and only using Craigslist to support his travel and rooming. His time traveling was defined by the kindness of strangers and left him with dozens of connections and memories.

Before Itunes and Limewire, before The Pirate Bay and torrenting, there was Napster. Napster was one of the forerunners of peer-to-peer file hosting, paving the way for modern information and content sharing. But back in its inception, it was simply about sharing music. Downloaded interviews Napster developers and music industry experts about the rise and fall of Napster as a result of the digital shift in the industry and regulations to copyright infringement. Napster's file sharing capabilities would lead to the fall of the current record industry and a shift to new platforms of sharing and distribution that remain in use today.

In 2010, Catfish captured the internet's potential for skewing the line between perception and reality. The documentary follows Nev Schulman and his online correspondence with a girl named Megan. The further he goes to try to meet her in person, the stranger things get. While Catfish has been considered by some to be more an over dramatized, faux documentary, its commentary on the potential of the internet for distortion of character holds true. The social infrastructure of the internet presents opportunities to be something or someone you are not.

With the rise of the internet age, it is no surprise that a shady digital currency has become widespread. The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin is a must watch internet culture documentary since it walks through the inception and spread of bitcoin, a peer to peer monetary system lacking any central depository or administration. Starting from the perspective of 35-year-old Bitcoin user Dan Mross, before expanding to various individuals and companies, the film presents the far-reaching potential of the new addition to the digital verge. The maximum potential for this relatively new currency is unknown and the time is now to get educated.

There is a slice of the internet most people have no idea exists or how to reach. It is the gateway to many illegal and questionable platforms not fit for public eyes like the dark web and silk road. Deep Web should be on your list of must watch internet culture documentaries. It examines this hidden away realm's potential and chronicles the timeline of its inception and growth. Narrated by Keanu Reaves, no doubt inspired by his role as the ultimate hacker/martial artist in The Matrix, Deep Web is a dive into the depths of the internet that anyone interested in learning the greater potential of the web should check out.

Maybe you haven't heard of the 'hacktivist' collective Anonymous. Put simply, they are the hackers fighting against the injustices across the internet often concerning freedom of speech and the price of internet privacy. They have launched attacks of varying degrees of severity at various organizations from foreign governments to credit card companies to Sony. If you want to learn more about their major operations and attacks, We Are Legion will take you through the collectives inception and most notable movements.

The rise of HBO's Silicon Valley is a must watch documentary about the internet culture. has brought the development end of tech start ups to everyone's attention. But it's not all fun and games. With hundreds of startups vying for success and widespread use, the landscape can become oversaturated with ideas. Many of the biggest sites we use today are startups and it's time to put faces and names to their developers. The Startup Kids will fill you in on the back end of the U.S. and Europe's based tech companies that are shaping the landscape of tomorrow's internet.

Aaron Swartz was a programmer, political organizer, hacktivist, and one of the most instrumental figures in shaping the capabilities of the internet. From co-founding Reddit to helping develop the web feed format RSS, his contributions to modern internet culture are vast. Swartz took his own life in 2013 while facing criminal charges for wire and computer fraud. The Internet's Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz is a must watch internet culture documentary. It depicts his life and contributions as well as expands greatly on the legal investigations surrounding his suicide. If you are interested in learning about one of the unsung heroes of the internet, look no further.


About the Creator

Bjorn Bjornson


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