Film screening Democracy

Democracy Indi Film/ Dieter Stürmer


Goethe-Institut New York

30 Irving Place
New York, NY 10003

When our neighbors peek into our windows, we close the blinds. But on the World Wide Web, we divulge our secrets without hesitation. ‘Big Data’ is more than just name, date of birth, and address. In the digital realm, we become transparent. With every click, every phone call, every payment made, every book ordered, every video downloaded, we leave our digital fingerprints behind. Edward Snowden’s bombshell revelations have made it clear that the world has become a world of data, where our most personal information is a vital resource. Data is the oil of the 21st century – wealth and power await those who control it. But who exactly controls access to private data? And what does that mean for society?

Director David Bernet opens the door to a nearly impenetrable world. Never before in the history of the European Union could filmmakers delve so deep into the inner chambers of European government to follow the origins of a law on film. In Brussels, the capital of the EU, Bernet follows, among others, the conservative European Commissioner Viviane Reding and the young, ambitious Green Party MP Jan Philipp Albrecht in their fight for a European data protection law – a law that would protect every form of data transfer. Lobbyists, business lawyers, and activists compete for influence over the proposal. Like David versus Goliath, civil rights face off against business interests.

Is there already a final decision? Far from it. Complex and challenging negotiations between the European Commission, the European Parliament, and national governments during the so-called ‘trialogue’ are currently in full swing. The debate has become about more than just ‘Big Data.’ The future of every citizen of the EU is at stake. Privacy and security hang in the balance. The battle has just begun…

David Bernet, s/w, 100 Min., 2015