The year is 2076 AD, and the last 70 years have been a rather bumpy ride. It turned out the Global Warming alarmists were the ones closest to correct, though nobody could have predicted the exact results of what the changing weather patterns would be. The polar ice caps, Antarctica- all of it is gone as now the only Ice on the planet is man made.
The ecological disaster was as drastic as you'd expect with entire ecosystems completely wiped out. With the ability to produce food compromised, the world population plummeted from it's peak of 8.3 billion down to the current 1.4 billion. Fortunately, we seem to have experienced the worst of it as the world's population holds steady. As a quirk of the new weather patterns, and seen as a sign that the planet is healing, there isn't a single spot on the planet in which yearly rainfall hasn't at least doubled. There are large areas where it has rained at least an hour a day for every day for almost a decade- especially in urban areas where it's not uncommon to not see the sun for weeks at a time.
It's not all bad news though. Communications technology, computer technology, and biotechnology have all kept pace with their development- maybe not advancing as fast as experts predicted but still making at least some progress daily. Sure you can't go outside without a raincoat anymore- but you don't really need to either. Most people can do their jobs from home- and those that can't are usually manual labor jobs.
Most dramatically, recent discoveries have finally cracked the man-machine interface on some levels. Artificial limbs and sensory organs are considered very expensive but really just another form of body modification on the street level. The use of nanomachines to cure diseases is a bit pricey but usually covered by most medical insurance contracts. Military cyberization happens but the technology hasn't advanced far enough for the killing machines to really occur. The only organ that really can't be enhanced somehow is the brain, and even then it seems like just a matter of time.
Socially, boundaries continue to be pushed and the overall momentum has gone for greater personal freedom. Racial tension is mostly considered a quaint footnote in history as well as gender discrimination in the workplace. Those with cybernetic implants are getting some flak but most people have learned their lesson. Sexual orientation is for the most part considered no more important then eye color, and it's believed that at least half of the adult population has at least experimented with bisexuality.
Drug legalization has made big pushes. Marijuana about as popular as Alcohol now and much more popular then Tobacco. Cocaine, Ecstasy, and Absinthe are also universally legal, if tightly controlled in Cocaine's case. With the advancements of medical fields most of the nastier side effects of these drugs can be canceled out anyway. Cyborgs are starting to develop new "drugs" that specialize in their unique physiologies as well.
As for sexual issues, the change has also been incredibly dramatic. Orientation drama is mostly considered a thing of the past, if hate groups still exist. Taboos are mostly breaking down- pedophilia and rape still being the big two that are frowned upon. And even then rape has a big fetish crowd. The abortion debate is for now considered mostly settled with quick chemical abortions that are reliable all the way into the sixth month on the market. Governments do offer tax incentives to keep and raise children as the common consensus is that the world is underpopulated.
Prostitution is now considered completely legal, and thanks to advances in technology very safe and easy as well. Since that vast majority of diseases can be cured with a quick injection of nanomachines, the hardest part is usually getting the legally required monthly disease test- and even then there exist kits that let the tests be preformed at home. After that it's just a few arrangements over the Internet and a costumer can be at the door within an hour of starting the test.
Pornography is a little more complicated as most governments want to see it encourage safe sexual practices. Most of the legal stuff has to ensure that all performers are aware they are being filmed, of legal age, and always use condoms for any sort of penetration beyond oral. Black market, illegal pornography is mostly what vice cops concentrate on and sadly it's thriving. With how easy it is too make a vid the market can quickly be flooded by vids that don't meet a legal requirement. The most common is a cyborg with recorders built into their eyes and ears recording a normal encounter without telling their partner, but everything from just not using a condom to snuff films featuring children can be found if you know where to look.
Rainworld isn't the easiest place to live, but it's not all bad.
--------------------Alright, I filed this under Group because the goal is to have a complete world feel to this. Individually it's going to be more like lots of one-on-one stories where the characters weave in and out of each other's lives like tears in the rain. We just all agree that it's in the same oversetting. The feel should be very cyberpunk, otherwise I am allowing complete freedom as long as all characters involve agree. You want to start a revolution, go ahead. You want to just be naughty in a club somewhere, that's fine too. As long as we agree, as all the players affected by the decision agree it's all fair game. Straight, Gay, Lesbian, Herm, NC, Vanilla, Snuff- everything is allowed if everyone involved is okay with it and it doesn't violate site rules.
Thoughts/Volunteers for this World Writing Endeavor?