Reddit | Jeraz0l

11+ Disturbing Pics That Show The Ways Society Is Slowly Becoming A Dystopia

When we see movies about a dark, grim future, they tend to involve extreme measures of government-mandated control, brutal authority figures, and constant unavoidable propaganda.

We marvel at the mind-boggling terror of living in such a society and wonder how anyone could possibly tolerate it, but that's only because we see it portrayed in extremes.

In reality, these means of control can cultivate in a society through much more subtle means. Rights are slowly eroded, measures that make an utter mockery of our privacy are quietly put into place and if the discouraging ways our world changes didn't leave a vaguely bad taste in our mouths, they would almost be boring.

Indeed, that's exactly how cultural theorist Mark Fisher once characterized how real dystopias form by coining the term "boring dystopia." This term refers to subtle signs of coercion that give us a slight sense of unease about how alienating our world is becoming.

Taken together, however, these signs paint a very grim picture of our future.

1. By now, we're supposed to be used to higher education putting us in debt and the books we need being ridiculously expensive, but it gets worse.

Reddit | ZatchRogen

Because this piece of paper contains an access code to a PDF of a textbook, that means it now costs as much as the book itself.

It cost a few cents to make this, but we pay $130 for it. Worse yet, it expires after a year.

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2. Often times, even good ideas can reveal a big systemic problem with our society in how they're advertised.

Reddit | AsianNoobX

There are a lot of good practical and environmental reasons for carsharing, but the fact that it's getting more and more expensive just to live anywhere besides a tent has to be one of the sadder ones.

Remember when people could afford shelter and transportation?

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3. We're used to seeing these signs warn us about road work or provide Amber Alerts, but it seems we have a new reality to get used to.

Reddit | Jmlsky

"Hey, you know that opioid crisis that's killing 130 people throughout the country every day?

Well, it's the reason why people in this area are desperate enough to carjack you. Maybe lock your doors."

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4. It's hard not to feel powerless as our natural resources dwindle, but this sign makes it clear why it's happening.

Reddit | sepehr_brk

Unfortunately, unless the 100 companies responsible for 71% of emissions actually do what needs to be done, there's a strong chance that whoever reads this sign in the future will only shake their heads sadly.

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5. There's something aggravating about the way we're supposed to treat our own surveillance.

Reddit | mosqua

Whether this ensures actual protection for this LGBTQ community or not, the idea that they're always being constantly watched is supposed to come off not only as normal, but cute.

"Hey, we put a rainbow on it and said 'fabulous.' That means this is welcome, right?"

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6. It's hard to get too excited about the lifestyles of the rich and famous when we compare them with the situations a lot of us face.

Reddit | CrushMyCamel

Adding up how expensive this room really is becomes a lot sadder when it's paired with a reminder like this tweet.

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7. Not only is this a reminder that anything we're supposed to just have can be monetized, but it's scary that there's a demand for this.

Reddit | Acrillix102

Even putting aside what "premium oxygen" is even supposed to be, this kind of inspires suspicions that future governments can use private means to sustain our lives as excuses to not maintain public resources essential to them.

After all, not only is there still uncertainty about how safe Flint, Michigan's water is, but a similar water crisis is already unfolding in Newark, New Jersey.

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8. As this unnerving warning makes clear, even the resources that are supposed to help us aren't always transparent about how they do it.

Reddit | mrwilliams117

Notice how this person had to fill in the blanks for us when it comes to privacy and what can happen when you call this number?

There's a lot of difference between needing help and needing to be institutionalized, but some organizations are better at recognizing that difference than others.

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9. While nothing should take away from the kindness of this man's act and the difference he made, there's something disappointing about the fact he had to do this in the first place.

Reddit | gilmglom

When already underpaid teachers have to spend their own money on their class supplies', it says a lot about the sad state of the public education system.

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10. The further along we go, the harder it becomes to actually afford to live.

Reddit | harrywk

If you're not going into debt to save your life or going into debt to go to school, it's pretty likely that you can go into debt to afford a means of existing in an area without adequate public transportation.

And that's without even mentioning the lofty idea of trying to afford a house in far too many parts of the country.

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11. Although this environmental disaster is now finally receiving media attention, this person's point still stands.

Reddit | yelpisforsnitches

It may have been hard to watch Notre Dame burn, but it's bizarre to realize that something with much more dire consequences for our continued existence flew under the radar for so long.

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12. After a 21-year-old attempted suicide, this was the hospital bill they were left with.

Reddit | cooltechpec

So now, a person who was in a vulnerable enough place for that to seem like an option has found themselves in an even more vulnerable place as a result of receiving unaffordable healthcare.

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13. Whether these Amazon FC ambassadors are people's genuine stories or not, they don't send the message that Amazon seems to want them to.

Reddit | SpaceJace219

Considering that Hannah's account has also somehow had the names "Ciera" and "Leo" attached to it, people became suspicious that Amazon was trying to do damage control with manufactured personalities.

But whether they're directly saying that their employees are at fault for experiencing mental health issues or tacitly encouraging actual employees to think that way, this tweet reflects incredibly poorly on them.

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14. That suspicion that these ambassadors aren't real people was stoked even further by this revelation.

Reddit | Thennnq

As we can see here, the account that is now supposed to represent 19-year-old Rafael made a tweet last year about bringing their grandchildren to an Amazon Family Day.

So when did "Nana" Rafael have the kids to make these grandchildren?

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15. This sign was put up to encourage pharmacists to find any way they can to get patients the medication they need, but it speaks to an uncomfortable reality.

Reddit | VivSavageGigante

So many people are trapped in a situation where they need their medication to live, but can't afford the sometimes absurd pricing set by pharmaceutical companies.

Although some headway is being made in Colorado against this problem, so many lives will remain at risk until other states follow suit.

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16. The fact that citizens of other countries are so shocked to hear of the heavy costs of services they take for granted shows how easy it is to get used to living like this.

Reddit | Darga_Kam

An emergency should be the last time we have to worry about weighing the cost of delaying treatment versus the cost to our budgets, but that's the reality when every aspect of medical care becomes so expensive.

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17. Normally, the discrepancy between evidence and the suspect's description would result in a release, but it's apparently naive to think that now.

Reddit | El-Sueco

Police claimed that this Photoshop job happened because the suspect applied makeup on his face tattoos, but the defense alleged that it was simply the result of tailoring his look to match witness testimonies, thus making him easier to convict whether he did the crime or not.

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18. When money rules everything, people are encouraged to consider the return on investment even in the case if feeding hungry children.

Reddit | PicnicLife

In this view, it's incumbent on the child to "deserve" avoiding malnutrition rather than on social programs to ensure that children don't starve.

Does that not seem like a depressing mindset?

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19. This is what you see when you visit the Amazon campus in Hyderabad, India.

Reddit | BootAssMcBootFace

Because nothing makes people more excited about coming to work than being under the watchful eye of guards armed with AK rifles.

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20. Reddit user Sunlocked99 uploaded this with the caption, "Remember that everything can and will be used as propaganda."

Reddit | Sunlocked99

There are many positions Americans can legitimately take on the way our police interact with citizens, so there's something distasteful about the way this league essentially decides these kids' positions for them.

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21. Not only it is sad that this is unique enough to warrant mentioning, but this company's business practices are more complicated than they might appear.

Reddit | lockedupsafe

The claim this sign makes could very well be true.

However, the fact that they had to pay out the equivalent of 14,694 for dismissing an employee after he started losing his sight and the allegations made against them for stealing marketing ideas with fake job interviews should also be noted.

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22. If you want to find out why the Amazon rainforest is on fire, you might run into an unexpected roadblock.

Reddit | LivingFaithlessness

That's because you may end up wading through a series of news results concerning price drops of Amazon's Fire tablet before you actually hit anything relevant to the situation.

It helps to put "rainforest" in quotes to avoid this.

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23. A school in Alabama apparently decided to fund a field trip to Washington D.C. by raffling off guns and gun paraphernalia.

Reddit | bobert_the_wise

Considering how many tragedies we constantly see as a result of people bringing guns to schools, it's hard not to feel baffled by this idea.

Just remember, more than one administrator saw nothing wrong with this.

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24. This job application makes it very clear what they expect their employees to accept.

Reddit | BuildAutonomy

If your priority is your own financial security, you might not be a great "fit" here.

If you value the company's financial security and its reputation among its customers, then they're happy to provide you with the opportunity to force a smile while someone screams in your face for whatever management feels like paying you.

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25. While it's true that I do respect this possible six-year-old for balancing work and school responsibilities, everything about that sentence makes me sad.

Reddit | Karnami

Let's not pretend that this is anything but the last thing this child probably wants to do right now. He's doing it because he has to and the fact that he has to do it all alone is even more disconcerting.

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26. Even though this travel magazine came out this year, this is how it's representing what's going on in Hong Kong.

Reddit | PlasmaReuse

Getting tear gassed and seeing how local issues with the Chinese and Hong Kong governments have gone beyond their boiling point sure sounds like the recipe for "three perfect days," doesn't it?

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27. It's hard to tell where this poll comes from, but even if it's a joke, it's not like it comes out of nowhere.

Reddit | Lorettooooooooo

Let's be honest, a lot of people don't look at us the same way if we get up later than any of these "acceptable" times no matter why we're doing it.

And frankly, there's something weird about the idea that we even need an excuse for the way we live our lives.

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28. Sadly, we can probably expect to start running out of places where we don't see warnings like this soon.

Reddit | JibbersGrift

We need to ask ourselves if we're willing to just accept societal conditions where it's not only possible that we'll be shot after leaving the house, but likely enough to warrant these strategies.

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29. According to this teacher, we should be grateful for the freedoms we have, but we're immature if we actually exercise those freedoms.

Reddit | yandhi42069

Not only that, but the fact that American law and culture was amended to address the injustices of the past means we should feel lucky to accept the injustices of the present.

You know, as opposed to using the movements responsible for making these significant strides as inspiration for improving society even further.

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30. There's something irksome about how tightly management seeks to control their employees' language here.

Reddit | WaggishCape

This person's description of "greeting" the customer may mean exactly the same thing as "welcoming" them, but it's not what Best Buy decided to call it so it's not acceptable.

Otherwise, how are we going to be exactly uniform?

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31. Even talking about the disturbing likelihood of being bankrupted by the need for lifesaving treatment misses a few nuances of how desperate things can get.


This collection is lovingly organized and was likely the result of years of passionate hunting and careful preservation, but this person now has to sacrifice it all.

When medical bills arise, you can have your life's passion or maybe your life, but not both.

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32. This is obviously a joke by this bookstore, but it echoes some very real concerns.

Reddit | ColdWarConcrete

When water riots seem like a very real possibility for our future world news, it's hard not to laugh a little more nervously than expected.

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33. Since we've long been aware that government agencies are probably using our own devices to spy on us, HP's asking us about our favorite ways to block them out.

Reddit | eddiedelrey

Since it's more or less impossible to get a laptop without a built-in way to facilitate this monitoring, they're instead advertising a way to turn it off.

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34. It's hard not to get suspicious when we start seeing corporate logos on police stations.

Reddit | TaharkaIpsen

With relations between the police and public already seeing a lot of strain, this only makes it easier to wonder whose best interests they're really looking out for.

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35. Since the point of advertising is to get a company's name in your mind, this TV patent ensures advertisers already win that battle.

Reddit | Particular_Bobcat

One way or another, we're going to end up acknowledging them here. So don't be surprised if we end up seeing this product in real life.

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36. If a child can't afford to pay for school lunches, this is what they could end up receiving.

Reddit | themumins

Nutrition plays an important role in a child's development, but ensuring that kids actually get that nutrition requires an actually well-funded public school system.

So instead, this.

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37. The more of this you read, the more dystopic it seems to get.

Reddit | SethlordX7

Only in the barest sense of the word was participation by these Shell union workers in a visit from President Trump not mandatory. It's technically possible, but at the cost of overtime time during a completely different day.

Not only that, but there better not be "anything viewed as resistance" going on here and they essentially aren't allowed to eat lunch. None will be provided, they cant bring any, and that time is needed so they can stand for several hours.

Such normal and not at all disturbing expectations.

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38. We may have fond memories of playing in the park as children, but children in this area can only look forward to playing in a parking lot.

Reddit | Jeraz0l

Not only that, but a parking lot with absolutely no way to ensure that a car can't just careen into this playground equipment at full speed.

There's no guard posts or barriers or anything.

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39. It's unclear exactly why this student is being arrested, but there's something chilling about the atmosphere around this.

Reddit | CocoJuka

Apparently, this is a sight that we've become so inured to that it's barely even worth looking up from our lunch at this point.

It wasn't so long ago that an incident like this would be hard to look away from.

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40. Here we have what seems closer to becoming the new normal all the time: bullet resistant backpacks.

Reddit | Kamuiberen

Not only is it infuriating that these are even necessary, but the $119 price tag and the somewhat suspicious wording just add insult to injury.

"Bulletproof" is easily understood, but just how resistant is "bullet resistant?"

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