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Speculative design mockumentary

A mockumentary movie about a future reality that could have happened in the past if a controversial technology of the present had become available in that past. Design mockumentaries aim at creating a reality that did not exist, does not exist, but that may exist sooner or later in the near future, as any design fiction. The basic element of the mockumentary is the counterfact or the fact that could have happened and that could still happen. The humorous license for mocking the counterfact helps bring concealed ideologies and political discourses behind it. Understanding recent facts of urban national histories are key to creating believable counterfacts and developing the storyline.

For faster production, it is possible to use short fragments of archive video material (from sources like local news archive, Youtube, and the Internet Archive) without the original audio, replaced by a narrator’s voice-over. The narration interpreted the facts differently from the original movie intended, as expected from a mockumentary. In this way, only a few pictures and videos need to be produced by designers. The visionary photomontage is a typical easy-to-produce material for speculative design mockumentaries.



Van Amstel, Frederick M. C. and Gonzatto, Rodrigo Freese. (2022). Existential time and historicity in interaction design. Human-Computer Interaction, 37(1), pp.29-68. DOI:

Categories: Methods & Tools.

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