Sci Fi Short Stories in the vein of Black Mirror

balerbowerbalerbower Registered User regular
Hey y'all,

As the title says, I'm craving sci fi short stories that explore the effects of near future technology on society. The setting should be contemporary, near future, or an alternate world with contemporary ties to modern day. If the story involves morally bankrupt corporations, woke individuals trying to resist the influence of dehumanizing tech, or a combination of the two, even better. Ideally, I would like to read more current stories by newly established or even unestablished writers, but I'll accept classics as well.

Thanks everyone.


  • Hahnsoo1Hahnsoo1 Make Ready. We Hunt.Registered User regular
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  • PailryderPailryder Registered User regular
    I remember reading back in the 80s a collection of Arthur C Clarke short stories and it had some awesome ones.
    Something "like" this book should get you what you crave :)

  • bsjezzbsjezz Registered User regular
    edited August 2017
    to be perfectly honest i think very few writers are doing bleak technological satire as well as charlie brooker right now. most of the literary dystopian authors have shifted gears into climate and gender, probably as they are more pressing concerns. i also feel that the experts on realistically predicting the impacts of tech and modern media are using that media to present their ideas: from wells to metropolis to the outer limits, sci-fi tends to hitch itself with modern means of expression. it packs more of a punch when it does, too, so that's where the acclaim winds up.

    (none of that helps you, and it may just be a convoluted excuse for my lack of a good suggestion :biggrin:)

    if you've never read it, the machine stops is fascinating if only because of how old it is and how fresh it feels

    harlan ellison was pushing the boundaries of dystopia back in the day, and i'd be surprised if you didn't find something that scratches that itch in dangerous visions

    warren ellis's normal seems to warrant a read

    also, here's a short story i wrote that seems to tick your boxes - i've never shared it outside of my classrooms before, so let me know if you like it!

    bsjezz on
  • Local H JayLocal H Jay Registered User regular
    Seems obvious but Twlight Zone. Even though it's dated it still has a lot of cool stories. First season is kinda the go-to.

    Brooker also made a show called "Dead Set" parody of Big Brother, the reality show. Good stuff.

    I've not seen it but Mr.Robot seems to have a similar tone

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  • ceresceres When the last moon is cast over the last star of morning And the future has past without even a last desperate warningRegistered User, Moderator mod
    Harlan Ellison. I'm not sure anything has chilled me to the bone quite like "I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream."

    I also loved 「おーい でてこーい」 ("Hey! Come Out!"), a Japanese short-short by Shinichi Hoshi. It's one of my favorites. It's about a hole.

    And it seems like all is dying, and would leave the world to mourn
  • DehumanizedDehumanized Registered User regular
    Yeah I dunno if Ellison's Scream strictly counts for what you're looking for but it's an absolute bone-chiller of a short story. Even better, here's an audiobook version dictated by Ellison himself that really captures the paranoid energy of the text. Give it a listen in a dark room.

  • WiseManTobesWiseManTobes Registered User regular
    edited August 2017
    Philip K. Dick, start with "Electric Ant" and "Flow my Tears, the Policeman Said"

    edit: if you don't mind a comedic twist, Rick and Morty touches on some pretty way out concepts in really neat ways ( that show can swing super dark tho too)

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  • Local H JayLocal H Jay Registered User regular
    Oh, The Wanting Seed by Anthony Burgess is an older book... but one with really interesting themes on overpopulation, and tries to show how human history repeats itself through government. Similar to 1984 and def worth a read.

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