‘Who are you calling a Luddite? Our love-hate relationship with technology’
by Sam Wallman



From the steam engine to the smartphone, technology has always changed our lives. But do you ever feel like you have no say? Meet the real Luddites.



In 2017, Nic Ludd tells Siri she's bored. In 1813, Ned Ludd makes stockings for a living.
Nic can't find a job and thinks she's been replaced by robots. Ned also feels machines are pushing him out of work.
Nic is upset that her crush hasn't texted her but has been on social media.
Ned and his friends are angry about their working conditions.
Ned knows the sledgehammer won't hold off the industrial revolution.
But out of pride, Ned destroys the machines that took his job.
Nic picks up her phone, containing the entire contents of her old desk.
Ned is being arrested for his part in the Luddite uprising.
Nic feels like she has a stone in her shoe.
Maybe it's just a pixel. She can't see it no matter how hard she shakes the boot.
Nic taps her shoe against the ground.
Ned is deported to Van Dieman's land. Part of his brain knows his surname will one day become an insult.
Some of Ned's friends are publicly hanged.
Nic takes selfies and watches the likes roll in.
Nic's brother ribs her. She calls him a Luddite.
Ned and his partner Elizabeth have a baby.
Their baby will have a baby, who will have a baby, who will be Nic.
Even though they are made of the same gunk, neither Nic nor Ned has any idea the other existed.
Is there an app that could change that?
What would Nic have done with that sledgehammer?
Would Nic have shown Ned video calls? What would he think of sex robots?
Would he have thought smashing them with a sledgehammer was violent or necessary?
Would Ned have boycotted Uber? Would he have tried to crawl inside that phone?
Does time progress in a straight line along a Y axis?
Or does it fold back on itself and sometimes disappear completely?
Today we share the Luddites' struggle as we embrace and resist new forms of technology. Does that make us all Luddites?


  • Design, illustration, writing: Sam Wallman
  • Concept and producer: Natasha Mitchell
  • Digital production: Rosanna Ryan
  • Development: Colin Gourlay