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Call for Papers - Re:coding Black Mirror workshop at CPDP2019


Auf der CPDP2019 am 30. Januar bis 1. Februar findet der Workshop "Re:coding Black Mirror" statt, in dem Themen zu Technologien aus der Serie aufgegriffen werden.

30 Jan - 01 Feb, 2019
AIT Austrian Institute of Technology
Brussels, Belgium


Call for papers Re:coding Black Mirror - One day workshop at CPDP2019


Black Mirror is a British sci-fi series directed by Charlie Brooker portraying a dystopian future emanating from the wide use of digital advancements. Even though Black Mirror’s episodes do not entirely rely on the widespread availability of existing technology, some of the advancements presented are not from such a distant future. The ethical and societal implications emerging from the increasing reliance on digital media (partly depicted in the series) has been a longstanding debate in critical studies underlying issues around privacy, social control, social and individual justice and other key values around Democracy such as freedom of speech. Computer science has picked up on such kind of issues focusing mainly on privacy offering technical solutions such as privacy by design and encryption amongst other tools.


Re:coding Black Mirror is a one-day workshop which aims at creating dialogue and connections between computer, data and social scientists and also activists and privacy advocates that are interested in the societal and ethical implications of digital technologies. In order to address emerging social phenomena from different perspectives, the workshop employs a novel interactive format, where researchers are invited to create futuristic scenarios as the ones depicted in Black Mirror exploring emerging societal and ethical concerns. It will also be a forum for raising opportunities of networking with scholars from different fields to explore novel research problems that can be relevant to both the web and social science communities.


Given the novelty of the workshop format, we welcome submissions addressing two different issues, as explained in the brief summaries below. Possible submissions are not restricted to those examples but works addressing those scenarios would be very much welcome too.

(1) Works showing how the ongoing research in the web community could enable/lead to dystopic scenarios similar to the ones presented in Black Mirror episodes and also, how it could prevent/minimise such risks.

For example:

  • How could web technologies be used to integrate information about another person from multiple online sources (digital footprinting), providing a mean for stalking or even blackmailing them? (S03E03)
  • How could web technologies be designed to prevent the abuse of user ratings based on the relations between people and information about their network/context? (S03E01)

(2) Works exploring the societal and ethical concerns emerging from digital technologies as presented in Black Mirror episodes.

For example:

  • How do technological developments impact parental surveillance strategies and consequently the family environment? (S04E02)
  • How does the normalization of surveillance through gamification change individuals’ relationship with the surveillance apparatus? (S02E02)


Please submit your contribution to the workshop by 1st October 2018 (23:59 Hawaii time) throughthe easychair system. To facilitate submissions from different fields, we accept three categories of submissions:

  • Full papers (max 8 pages) on research and applied technologies,
  • Short papers (max 4 pages) about visions and positions on forthcoming challenges,
  • Abstracts (max 2 pages) on the societal and ethical risks of the aforementioned technologies.

We expect each paper to take as a starting point one futuristic scenario, either directly from Black Mirror or of a similar nature, as motivation for the work presented. You can take a look at the previous Re:coding Black Mirror workshop here.


  • PINELOPI TROULLINOU, Knowledge Media Institute, The Open University, UK
  • MATHIEU D'AQUIN, Insight Centre for Data Analytics, NUI Galway, Ireland
  • ILARIA TIDDI, Knowledge Media Institute, The Open University, UK

For further information about the workshop and the submission process please send your emails to pinelopi.troullinou@open.ac.uk

We look forward to welcoming you to CPDP2019!

Warm regards

The Programming Committee and the Scientific Committee

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