K pop idol conscription + more

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K pop idol military service

K Pop: idol speculation | Financial Times – how Korea’s military service impacts the country’s talent management companies. There have been numerous K pop idol military scandals. K pop idol Rain was punished for going AWOL whilst on military business to meet a fellow celebrity. Big Bang’s T.O.P. was discharged for cannabis use. There is a movement to try and have idol artists become exempt from military service. Korea has past a law allowing top level K pop idols to defer their military service for two more years until 30. More Korea related content here.



China’s Tech Ban Could Have Grave Long-Term Consequences | Hardware | TechNewsWorldThis ban on U.S. computer products could be viewed as a modern version of the “Haijin,” or sea ban — a series of isolationist Chinese polices that began in the 14th century under the Ming dynasty, with the goal of putting an end to Japanese maritime piracy. It was applied again under the Qing Dynasty beginning in the 17th century, limiting maritime trading and coastal settlement, but that eventually led to smuggling — including the illicit opium trade — and then to conflicts with Great Britain and other European powers. While the intent of Haijin largely was to reduce outside influence, China never completely closed itself to the West or to Western goods. China’s current ban on foreign products should not be viewed as isolationist in its intent, but rather as a direct result of the trade war. It also could be a way to build up the “home team” companies in China

The Coming Political Restrictions on Chinese Outbound Travel – The Diplomat – lots of foreign destinations will be breathing a collective sigh of relief

Consumer behaviour

‘Fangirls’ Defend China From Hong Kong Protesters and the World – BloombergFang Kecheng, assistant professor of communication and journalism at the Chinese University of Hong Kong sees state influence working hand-in-hand with young nationalist netizens, including fangirls who take note of the narrative on state media, then act upon it. “That’s not to say they are entirely manipulated, or being passively used as a tool,” he says. “There are things they’re searching for, such as a common identity and the ability to express their opinions.”


Shanghai’s Fading Graffiti Scene Writes One Final Chapter | sixth tone  – if this isn’t some of the saddest stuff that you’ve read recently from a cultural point of view I don’t know what is

To fight K-pop’s influence in China, a club teaches young boys to be alpha males – Los Angeles Times – and this so doesn’t sound homoerotic at all…. Macho, macho man! I want to be a macho man…. Seriously though one does have to ask the question about what kind of male role models (like fathers or uncles) that these kids have in their lives


Restructuring United States Government Debt:her Private Rights, Public Values, and the Constitution by Edmund W. Kitch, Julia D. Mahoney :: SSRNwe doubt that payments on treasury obligations will necessarily take precedence over what the electorate sees as more pressing needs, including national security and price stability. In particular, we suspect voters may balk if told that holders of United States debt securities have ironclad priority over Social Security claimants and others with well-settled expectations of government benefits. Second, we think it wrong to equate restructuring with catastrophe. While we do not dismiss out of hand the dangers of not paying creditors in full and on time, we believe that—perhaps counterintuitively—the American constitutional framework could prove an asset rather than a liability when it comes to handling severe financial stress

Machinic dispossession and augmented despotism: Digital work in an Amazon warehouse – Alessandro Delfanti – interesting read, have things moved on from Taylorism?

Humans at Work in the Digital Age: Forms of Digital Textual Labor, 1st Edition (Hardback) – Routledgethis book shows how definitions of labor have been influenced by the digital technologies that employees use to produce, interpret, or process text. Incorporating methodology and theory from a range of disciplines and highlighting labor issues related to topics as diverse as census tabulation, market research, electronic games, digital archives, and 3D modeling, contributors uncover the roles played by race, class, gender, sexuality, and national politics in determining how narratives of digital labor are constructed and erased

The Chinese city struggling after Samsung closes its last factory – Inkstone – well if Chinese people want to buy Huawei there’ll be a lot more of this


Marcus John Henry Brown: Die ultimative Aufforderung zu handeln | W&V – William Gibson meets Cambridge Analytica and the Mercers – dark stuff

How William Gibson Keeps His Science Fiction Real | The New YorkerWhen Gibson was starting to write, in the late nineteen-seventies, he watched kids playing games in video arcades and noticed how they ducked and twisted, as though they were on the other side of the screen. The Sony Walkman had just been introduced, so he bought one; he lived in Vancouver, and when he explored the city at night, listening to Joy Division, he felt as though the music were being transmitted directly into his brain, where it could merge with his perceptions of skyscrapers and slums. His wife, Deborah, was a graduate student in linguistics who taught E.S.L. He listened to her young Japanese students talk about Vancouver as though it were a backwater; Tokyo must really be something, he thought

Project MUSE – William Carlos Williams and the Cult of the New – or how novelty, science, technology and modernism became an ideology in and of themselves

Beyond a Spectacular Image of the Working Class: New Political Science: Vol 0, No 0 – interesting analysis of the Situationist International movement and its effects on Paris in 1968 and the yellow vest protests in 2019

Hong Kong

Hong Kong offices become new battleground in protests | Financial Times – to be fair when I worked in Hong Kong there was Cantonese speaking cliques and mandarin speaking cliques so it feels like this has been dialled up


Briefing: Trump Administration Mulls ‘Notorious Markets’ Listing for Amazon Foreign Sites — The Information – Amazon sites in the U.K., Canada, Germany, France and India be designated as hot spots for counterfeit merchandise


Swiss body considers ban on Swatch unit selling parts – Schweiz am Wochenende – no ETA movements all next year – via Singapore’s Today Online

For Luxury Watch Brands, Balancing E-Commerce with Retail Can Prove A Challengewatch website Hodinkee announced that it had been named an authorized retailer for Omega, one of the world’s largest watch brands, both parties celebrated the news with a 10-day pop-up in Manhattan’s Soho neighborhood. The mixed messaging about how to sell, via brick-and-mortar or e-commerce, was nothing new for Omega, whose retail points of sale span the physical and digital world

Why Chinese Elites Are Mastering Western Manners | sixth tone – replacing gap left by decline in Confucian etiquette means western etiquette is filling a void. It’s ironic that China seems to want to repeat the process by putting Hong Kong culture through the shredder

How a Hong Kong Socialite Scammed Her Way into a Crazy Rich Life – I actually admire the player but hate the game in this


Quibi/Hollywood: Ok boomer | Financial Times – the thoughts everyone in the media industrial complex is thinking about Quibi encapsulated in the FT: Advertisers will be drawn to the Hollywood names. Subscriptions will be tougher. Short-form videos are already available for free on TikTok, Instagram, Snap and YouTube. Disney has proved that there is room for new streaming services — it had 10m sign-ups on the first day. But Quibi’s $7.99 ad-free rate is more expensive and it has no well-known brands to lure users. Young viewers are also unlikely to be the ones paying the bill. With households already balancing cable, Netflix, Disney and every other streaming service, why would they fork out for a Quibi sub too? – go and read the full article (paywall)

Facebook and Google Balance Booming Business with Censorship Pressure in Vietnam — The Information learning from China experience. No staff in-country, payments routed through Singapore and Ireland subsidiaries. People stationed in the country would be vulnerable to pressure for information about the identity of users posting content and they worry that staffers could be arrested or the offices raided

Authorities Recall Sexist Health Manual From Shenzhen Schools | sixth toneGirls like boys who are “rich” and full of “masculine charm,” according to a photo included in the report. Boys, meanwhile, prefer girls who are “pretty” and “tender,” and are put off by “tough women,” “strong feminists,” and “money worshippers.” – because ‘women hold up half the sky’ is so passe

Mediatel: Newsline: UK to become the first market to exceed 70% digital adspend – and I don’t think that this is necessarily a good thing. Where’s the brand building spend rather than activation


In U.K. Vote, Online Disinformation Is the New Normal | New York Times – this will then affect domestic and foreign opinions on the legitimacy of the British government

Inside the Podcast that Hacks Ring Camera Owners Live on Air – VICE – this was bound to happen, what about all the people who are covering their tracks rather than just doing it for the LULz?

Hackers scraped data of plus-sized women for targeted ads, scams – Business Insider – to be fair if it wasn’t for GDPR some e-commerce experts would be up for buying this data set for enrichment of CRM campaigns

The “Great Cannon” has been deployed again | AT&T Alien Labs – interesting that its being deployed by the Chinese government against Hong Kong sites


‘Chase you until you purchase’: The rise of the DTC telemarketer | Modern Retail – gosh this is a dystopian vision of retailing, but happening in real life


Facebook built a chatbot to help employees deflect criticism over the holidays – The Verge – because everyone needs a chatbot to support work related discussions with friends and family. I wonder if it says anything other than ‘ok boomer’


Discover and Read the Best of Twitter Threads | ThreadReaderApp – so handy


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