Esprit + more news

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The rise and fall of Esprit, SF’s coolest clothing brandEsprit appealed to the youth with a message of lefty, post-racial harmony. Wild prints, bright colors and baggy silhouettes reigned. Their tote bags and T-shirts hung from all the coolest shoulders, adorning fashion plates with the legendary Esprit logo. With the logo’s omnipresence at the time, it may as well have been Supreme for the teens of the late ’80s and early ’90s. – the article skips over some of the awful things that Esprit did to its Chinese emigrant workers in San Francisco.

Esprit Store in Gentings Casino, Malaysia by Ryan Lackey

The success of Esprit was down to its ‘Europeaness’. It had a Benetton kind of vibe, because they shared the same advertising creative and a similar approach to interior retail space design and bright colours. Esprit eventually listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange but never got its mojo back. The clean logo was designed by John Casado, who had worked for Apple on the Macintosh icons and New Line Cinema


Chinese documentary prompts rare criticism of Xi’s anti-corruption campaign | Financial TimesAnalysts said the negative reaction to Zero Tolerance suggests the decade-long campaign has not sealed public confidence in the party’s ability to investigate itself for graft, which remains widespread….“Getting caught doesn’t mean you are more corrupt than others,” said a former official at the Supreme People’s Procuratorate, the highest government agency responsible for investigation and prosecution of criminal cases. “It just means you have bad luck.” – such a good read and reaffirms much of what I saw in China, prior to and during the early Xi premiership. The way it falls is arbitrary in nature and usually linked to power struggles


China’s ‘Common Prosperity’ to Squeeze Cash-Strapped Local Governments – WSJ – pledges on education, healthcare and public housing is expected to be funded by local governments whose main source of revenue is selling land to property developers, so you can imagine that’s going to work out well….. NOT


For Olympic Sponsors, ‘China Is an Exception’ – The New York TimesAt the bottom of the slope where snowboarders will compete in the 2022 Beijing Olympics, an electronic sign cycles through ads for companies like Samsung and Audi. Coca-Cola’s cans are adorned with Olympic rings. Procter & Gamble has opened a beauty salon in the Olympic Village. Visa is the event’s official credit card. President Biden and a handful of other Western leaders may have declared a “diplomatic boycott” of the Winter Games, which begin next week, but some of the world’s most famous brands will still be there. The prominence of these multinational companies, many of them American, has taken the political sting out of the efforts by Mr. Biden and other leaders to punish China for its human rights abuses, including a campaign of repression in the western region of Xinjiang that the State Department has declared a genocide. – at the end of the day, brands are more afraid of Chinese consumers and the Chinese government than they are of western governments and activist consumers

Instagram and TikTok pull ads from startup Cerebral linking ADHD to obesity | NBC News – the lesson of this is correlation and casuality are different


Latvia slams Germany’s ‘immoral’ relationship with Russia and China | Financial Times and this which is largely down to Germany: EU gives China a nudge rather than a slap over Lithuania – POLITICO. Let’s see what Germany does about: Slovenia latest EU nation hit by China for backing Taiwan | World | The Times – Slovenia provides more products and components to German industry


A remote village, a world-changing invention and the epic legal fight that followed | Financial Times – interesting dispute with Ocado

In Depth: New Zealand Fruit Giant’s Kiwi Battle in China 


Implications of Revenue Models and Technology for Content Moderation Strategies by Yi Liu, Pinar Yildirim , Z. John Zhang :: SSRNWe show that a self-interested platform can use content moderation as an effective marketing tool to expand its installed user base, to increase the utility of its users, and to achieve its positioning as a moderate or extreme content platform. For the purpose of maximizing its own profit, a platform will balance pruning some extreme content, thus losing some users, with gaining new users because of a more moderate content on the platform. This balancing act will play out differently depending on whether users will have to pay to join (subscription vs advertising revenue models) and on whether the technology for content moderation is perfect. 

We show that when conducting content moderation optimally, a platform under advertising is more likely to moderate its content than one under subscription, but does it less aggressively compared to the latter when it does. This is because a platform under advertising is more concerned about expanding its user base, while a platform under subscription is also concerned with users’ willingness-to-pay. We also show a platform’s optimal content moderation strategy depends on its technical sophistication. Because of imperfect technology, a platform may optimally throw away the moderate content more than the extreme content. Therefore, one cannot judge how extreme a platform is by just looking at its content moderation strategy. Furthermore, we show that a platform under advertising does not necessarily benefit from a better technology for content moderation, but one under subscription does, as the latter can always internalize the benefits of a better technology. This means that platforms under different revenue models can have different incentives to improve their content moderation technology.

Has Instagram Lost its Organic Reach? What to expect for 2022  – Fanpage Karma Blog – treading that same like that Marshall and Whatley found for Facebook in their Ogilvy white paper Facebook Zero


AUKUS: Strategic drivers and geopolitical implications – Britain’s World – as much about cyber capabilities, artificial intelligence, quantum technologies, and additional undersea capabilities as nuclear submarines

What China thinks of possible war in Ukraine | The EconomistBoth see a world order being reshaped by American weariness and self-doubt, creating chances to test and divide the democratic West. Chinese and Russian diplomats and propaganda organs relay and amplify parallel narratives about the benefits of iron-fisted order over American-style dysfunction. Joint military exercises demonstrate growing trust – but China will be very cautious and nationalists want the Russian Far East back where it belongs as part of China

FBI considered using Pegasus spyware for US domestic surveillance | AppleInsider


Will China dominate the world of semiconductors? | The Economist 

The scramble for semiconductors is our era’s industrial Great Game | Financial Times