The latest season of Black Mirror has managed to scare viewers into paying attention to their terms and conditions for a change.
The first episode of season six, ‘Joan is Awful’, taps into our fears surrounding AI and deepfakes. According to some reports, Google Trends searches for “Netflix terms and conditions” spiked 596% within three days of Black Mirror’s season six debut.
‘Joan is Awful’ follows Joan Tait (played by Annie Murphy) as her life spirals out of control due to her negligence in reading the fine print of a meta, in-show Netflix-like service called Streamberry.
To her dismay, Joan realises that she has unknowingly granted the streaming platform the right to adapt her life into a highly dramatised TV show. And behind it all is a neutral evil corporate head using the help of a quantum computer—very similar to K.E.V.I.N. (Knowledge Enhanced Visual Interconnectivity Nexus) from MCU’s She-Hulk—and the digital likeness of Salma Hayek.
Concerned about the potential real-life consequences of neglecting to read the terms and conditions, viewers of the episode naturally turned to Google for answers after watching this episode of Black Mirror.
Of course, the episode leans into the bit without delving deeper into consumers’ constitutional rights and the legality of such clauses holding up in a court of law in the real world.
However, seizing the opportunity to play along with the hype, Netflix launched a functional Streamberry website shortly after the new season’s release. Fans, who perhaps have no sense of irony, can now star in their own personalised version of ‘You Are Awful’ by granting Netflix the right to use their name and likeness for promotional material related to the experience.