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Wednesday, February 13

13.Feb.2013 - DOCUMENTARIES: Networked Society, Supersize Me, Bad Behavior Online, Clean Technology Future, Food Speculator

Life in a Networked Society
Technologies enable people to interact, innovate and share information in totally new ways. People are empowered, business is liberated and the society is more transparent. But how to take advantage of all this? And what does it take to become a networked society?

Supersize Me – Morgan Spurlock vs McDonald’s Fastfood
While examining the influence of the fast food industry, Morgan Spurlock personally explores the consequences on his health of a diet of solely McDonald’s food for one month.
Super Size Me is a 2004 American documentary film directed by and starring Morgan Spurlock, an American independent filmmaker. Spurlock’s film follows a 30-day period from February 1 to March 2, 2003 during which he ate only McDonald’s food. The film documents this lifestyle’s drastic effect on Spurlock’s physical and psychological well-being, and explores the fast food industry’s corporate influence, including how it encourages poor nutrition for its own profit.
Spurlock dined at McDonald’s restaurants three times per day, eating every item on the chain’s menu at least once. Spurlock consumed an average of 20.92 megajoules or 5,000 kcal (the equivalent of 9.26 Big Macs) per day during the experiment.
As a result, the then-32-year-old Spurlock gained 24½ lbs. (11.1 kg), a 13% body mass increase, a cholesterol level of 230, and experienced mood swings, sexual dysfunction, and fat accumulation in his liver. It took Spurlock fourteen months to lose the weight gained from his experiment using a vegan diet supervised by his future wife, a chef who specializes in gourmet vegan dishes.
The reason for Spurlock’s investigation was the increasing spread of obesity throughout U.S. society, which the Surgeon General has declared “epidemic,” and the corresponding lawsuit brought against McDonald’s on behalf of two overweight girls, who, it was alleged, became obese as a result of eating McDonald’s food.
The documentary was nominated for an Academy Award for Documentary Feature.

Bad Behavior Online: Bullying, Trolling and Free Speech
The internet is a powerful tool for communication, but it can sometimes be a double-edged sword. As most of us have seen or experienced, the internet can bring out the worst behavior in people, highlighting some of the cruelest and most hurtful aspects of humanity. Issues such as bullying online and trolling have garnered a lot of attention recently, prompting questions about who does, and should, regulate the internet, and what free speech means online.

The Clean Technology Future
What if we could live in a clean world?A world in which energy would be 100% renewable, water no longer polluted, transportation truly green and production methods clean and regenerative? There will be such a world. This documentary explores the unprecedented possibilities of a new industrial revolution: Cleantech.
Signs of a new future are visible everywhere, from China to the US and from Europe to Thailand. Green mobility powered by sustainable energy, clean drinking water for all thanks to nanotechnology, dyeing textiles using recycled CO2. All of this is possible and is happening successfully now! Working together with Cleantech-founder Nick Parker, this film shows what our world will be like in the decades to come. The film team travels the world in search of a clean future.
The Food Speculator
The film examines the global commodities futures markets and aims to understand the role of speculation on food prices.
Assuming the role of a speculator, director Kees Brouwer tries to find out whether he is merely taking advantage of the opportunity offered to investors by the food scarcity, or that, through this abstract world of financial products, he is drastically interfering in poor people’s lives.
Increasing food prices are increasingly causing unrest in the world. It was no coincidence that when the Arab Spring first began Tunisian protesters attacked the order police with baguettes. Is there just not enough food for so many people, or are the price increases caused by speculators, looking for quick profits? Backlight tries to find an answer by doing a little food speculation of its own. A quest that leads us to places including the streets of Tunisia and the Chicago Stock Exchange.
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