As part of its A Thin Line campaign, MTV premiered a new movie last week called DISconnected. Like other recent movies, such as Trust and Cyberbully, this film aims to raise awareness of different – but very real – online issues, including the dangers of sexting, relationship trauma and online predators, cyberbullying, reputation damage and other forms of digital abuse. The film was released this month in honor of October marking National Bullying Prevention Month.
Partially inspired by true events, DISconnected portrays the effects of technology when teens become overly dependent on their online activities and too disconnected from real life. Because social networks and other forms of social media continue to grow in popularity, it’s easy for teens today to become consumed by relationships and various forms of communication and interactions online. By focusing on four different characters, DISconnected addresses oversharing and the risks of online reputation damage, digital abuse from dating including sexting and other forms of emotional abuse and harassment, and how teens portray themselves differently on social networks and can therefore get lost in their online personas. Perhaps the most troubling story portrayed in the film is that of Isaiah, based on 19-year-old Abraham Biggs who was bipolar and, after being cyberbullied and egged on by viewers of his various webcasts’, eventually documented his suicide online.
While it’s scary and worrisome that issues like these are becoming more and more prevalent, it’s great to see movies and other forms of media and outreach initiatives that address the various dangers that are occurring. We encourage parents and teens alike to check out these different films, and have open conversations about both the positive and negative aspects of social networks, and about living in such a connected and digital world today.
Check out the trailer for DISconnected here.
Have you seen any of these recent movies that address different online issues such as cyberbullying and online predators?