Black Mirror 2.4 “White Christmas”

White Christmas

Values: Consciousness Cloning

The first scene of the episode shows two men in a hut on a Christmas Eve. Both are likely to have known each other for a long time, supposedly for five years – but have barely talked to each other. In particular, it may be Joe who is extremely vociferous, while the other man Matt is a very extrovert type. During the preparation of the Christmas dinner, the conversation becomes more intense. Joe goes a little out of his head and tells about his fate. He was married. His wife became pregnant and wanted to abort the child. It did not come to that through his resistance – but to a separation already. In this future it was already possible to remove other people from his own consciousness. Joe did not have the opportunity to see his child anymore. After the separation and birth of the child, there was another nick in his life. His wife dies in a traffic accident. Now he has the opportunity to see his child for the first time and it was horrible. It has Asian facial features and it was clear that he was not the father. Then it came to arguments with his stepfather who was fatally injured. His wife’s daughter was on her own and dies as well. Joe was the murderer of two people, which he confessed to Matt in the ATT. As far as the reality seems.


The scene above plays in a future where the cloning of consciousness is possible. For this purpose, a small metal ball is temporarily and briefly implanted in the brain and this artefact collects all information from the brain. After the reverse operation one then has access to the consciousness of the persons concerned. The metal ball is packed in a kind egg timer with which one can then communicate.

You can see Matt grappling with the cloned consciousness of a client. Matt describes himself as a trainer of cloned consciousness. He also has a hobby as a side job, he supports men, mostly introverts, in finding a partner. Unfortunately, a mistake happens and one of his clients is murdered. Legally, he is now guilty of aiding and abetting murder.

So he finds himself in the same prison as the two-time murderer Joe. In order to make a confession to Joe, Joe now draws a consciousness clone. Matt is required to force this awareness into a confession. That’s exactly what happened in the cabin at Christmas. The hut with the two humans was nothing but the consciousness of Joe.

Awareness arises when a cognitive system (brain, sensors and actuators) deals with an environment and can make a differentiation there. If a human consciousness – as we suspect we have it – draws a clone, it’s a snapshot. From the time this clone exists, it will continue to evolve awareness based on the availability of actuators and sensors. Above all, it is the environment in which the artificial consciousness exists. Thus, these two consciousness’s, the innate natural and the cloned artificial develop differently. One can imagine that just like the existence of identical twins. The longer they live and the more different their environment, the more different is the development of consciousness.

In the episode “White Christmas”, a clone of consciousness called the “cookie” is drawn and used as a personal assistant. At this time, the “cookie” still has the will of HOST. So that this really becomes useful as an assistant, it just needs a coach and this is Matt – the “cookie trainer”.

Matt manages to convince Joe to confess, which results in his being convicted. Matt gets thereby a straighter relief. He is released, but has no access to other people. He is stigmatized as a criminal and can no longer contact anybody.

A cloned consciousness develops on its own, can be trained and adapts to the respective environment. In contrast, an awareness upload is an intelligence that is constantly updated (depending on bandwidth and computing power). In the event that one’s own consciousness / body dies, the upload can be downloaded into another body.

Gesponserte Beiträge