The Light Bulb Conspiracy is a documentary that examines how companies undertake Planned Obsolescence, which is the deliberate shortening of product life spans. This as the movie argues is done to guarantee consumer demand.
The Light Bulb Conspiracy involves investigative research and rare archive footage to trace the untold story of Planned Obsolescence, right from its beginnings in the 1920s with a secret cartel, set up expressly to limit the life span of light bulbs, to modern day stories involving cutting edge electronics (such as the iPod) and the growing spirit of resistance amongst ordinary consumers.
This film moves to different countries like France, Germany, Spain and the US in order to find witnesses belonging to an industry and following a business practice which forms the basis of the modern economy.
The film shows the underbelly of the business practice by showing disquieting pictures from Africa, a country where discarded electronics are piled up in huge cemeteries for electronic waste.