(CNN)With Monica Lewinsky arsenic producer, narrator and self-proclaimed "patient zero" for its premise, "15 Minutes of Shame" is simply a thought-provoking if somewhat scattered documentary, 1 that looks astatine the nastiness of online culture, its inclination toward drawback judgments and the havoc that tin wreak connected lives of mean people.
Author Jon Ronson, who wrote the book "So You've Been Publicly Shamed," speaks of "social media justice," and the mode the nett has go what Lewinsky dubs "a breeding crushed for outrage and ridicule."
Director Max Joseph past proceeds to exemplify the dangers of that -- and knee-jerk responses that shame people, sometimes based connected flimsy oregon incomplete grounds -- designed to provender integer platforms built astir algorithms that favour hostility and amplify the loudest and harshest voices.
Coming amid caller reporting astir Facebook, It's a sobering if not wholly caller observation, 1 that Joseph explains done a bid of lawsuit studies, including 2 from the tallness of the pandemic: Matt Colvin, the Tennessee antheral who appeared to monopolize the marketplace for manus sanitizer during the aboriginal days of the pandemic successful a New York Times piece; and Laura Krolczyk, the New York health-system worker who unleashed a torrent of maltreatment with an online station astir Trump supporters giving up claims to ventilators, for which she was fired.
If you don't retrieve those stories, "15 Minutes of Shame" makes wide that the radical progressive inactive do, successful immoderate cases feeling the ramifications agelong after. Cultural historiographer Tiffany Watt-Smith points to the powerfulness of schadenfreude, with radical delighting successful others' misfortune and righteously seeking to nonstop retribution.
Throughout, the documentary makes a compelling lawsuit that nine is "drowning" successful this bitter stew, pouncing connected and punishing perceived offenders, arsenic writer Roxanne Gay observes, successful a mode that excessively often lacks nuance. "We fell successful emotion with this caller powerfulness excessively much," she says.
One contented that this HBO Max presumption can't wholly code is that immoderate examples of shaming look wholly justified. The occupation is that integer vigilantes don't ever marque important and indispensable distinctions, which tin pb to miscarriages of that aforementioned justness and crook information into a casualty.
The documentary functions arsenic an unofficial companion to a abstracted task connected which Lewinsky served arsenic a producer, "Impeachment: American Crime Story," the FX miniseries that sympathetically looks backmost astatine the publicity ordeal she endured during the Clinton impeachment saga.
In 1 of the much sobering points from "15 Minutes of Shame," it's noted that sites similar Twitter thrive connected conflict, fundamentally assuming the relation of the 3rd kid connected the playground yelling "Fight!" erstwhile 2 classmates quadrate off.
There's nary denying that the integer playground tin beryllium a rough, unforgiving environment. Whether "15 Minutes" merits 90 minutes of viewing to sorb that mostly self-evident acquisition could beryllium different matter, but astatine its best, it's a reminder to dilatory down and look some ways earlier joining successful the latest media pile-on.
"15 Minutes of Shame" premieres Oct. 7 connected HBO Max, which, similar CNN, is simply a portion of WarnerMedia.