When was the last time you clicked ‘accept’ on some online terms and conditions? Yesterday? Last week? The increasing pervasiveness of this seemingly simple act in our lives is placed under the microscope in Cullen Hoback’s documentary film Terms and Conditions May Apply screening at ACMI in October as part of the Antenna Documentary Film Festival.
The film explores how this mostly mindless act of clicking has expanded to commit us to greater and greater infractions on privacy. Increasingly, we haven’t even consented to anything before our information is harvested, bought and sold.
Some of the scarier implications examined in the film involve security agencies interfering in public protests before they’ve even happened, based on information harvested from personal emails and private Facebook posts.
In the wake of the recent National Security Agency (NSA) hacking scandal, which revealed the American agency has been accessing online data of civilians at home and abroad, the film addresses one of the most imperative issues of the digital age.
In our complicatedly connected world, there’s perhaps something comforting about viewing such a relevant film at a festival, in a shared, ‘offline’ experience accompanied by a physically present audience.
Speaking of audiences, for its third year Antenna is spreading the documentary love to Melbourne for the very first time. Heading south from Sydney, a selection of docos from around the world will screen, from the online dystopia of Terms and Conditions May Apply and the unbelievable story of I Will Be Murdered, to the environmental and philosophical adventure story through the fjords of Greenland, Expedition to the End of the World.
Opening the Melbourne leg of the festival is Academy Award-winning Australian filmmaker Eva Orner’s The Network. This powerful film explores the hope and challenges faced by ordinary Afghans as they build an independent television station after the end of the Taliban’s rule.
The Antenna Documentary Festival runs at ACMI from Thursday 17 October – Sunday 20 October 2013.