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Things that caught my eye this week

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lifeintaiwan have gone into the economics of YouTube by looking at their own channel in this video. It makes fascinating viewing and provides more questions than answers about the value of ‘influencer’ fees being paid in travel, beauty and FMCG sectors. It will provide additional grist on the economics of YouTube moving forwards

Photochromeleon: Creating Color-Changing Objects – YouTube – I thought that this was projection mapping but it seems to be just variable light wavelengths. Really interesting applications from activations to packaging design

The nth room sex scandal is a mix of dark web fears played out within a private Telegram channel. Some great explanations and vox pops interviews in Korea by Asian Boss. This scandal falls on the back of other sexual exploitation scandals in the Korean media, notably around the Burning Sun club in Seoul. It is also interesting how Telegram had been perceived as a super-safe channel for delivery of services, rather than building a dark web site. More Korea related posts here.

Asian Boss vox pop interviews with the Korean public on the nth room sex abuse scandal

Mark Ritson talks about marketing in the midst of a recession. If you do nothing else this week, get a CMO you know to watch it. The big thing to take away is the concept of eSOV. Although Ritson doesn’t mention this explicitly, this is the foundation of Proctor & Gamble’s success during the Great Depression.

The history of Marriott carpet camouflage. Uniform History do some interesting design story videos and their April’s Fools videos tap into odd but true stories. Apparently this camouflage was for cosplay conventions in the US. The video then goes into a tangled mess of intellectual property, fair use, parody and cultural appropriation of a carpet. The thing has taken a life of its own. When Marriott refreshed its carpet choice the old ones were dumpster dived or bought up by cosplayers so that they could continue the convention tradition that had build up over a few years.

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ICYMI | 万一你错过了| 당신이 그것을 놓친 경우에 대비해서

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Huawei is gradually shifting chip production from TSMC to SMIC  – this is China decoupling from western supply chains. TSMC to SMIC also has the additional benefit of damaging Taiwan’s leverage on China. More on Huawei here.

Plastic surveillance: Payment cards and the history of transactional data, 1888 to present – Josh Lauer, 2020 – interesting but hardly surprising conclusions from data-mining

‘Furious and scared’: Long before COVID-19, these families knew Canada’s long-term-care system was broken | The Star – issues with Chinese government-owned companies and a complete lack of accountability

HNA in chaos as internal divisions erupt in public | Financial TimesOne investor who sought to buy a large real estate portfolio from HNA in late 2018 said that the deal fell through because it was no longer clear who was in control of the assets – this is interesting when you start about thinking allegations of all Chinese businesses (like Huawei) essentially being state-directed businesses. Especially when you consider it in the context

Inside Icebucket: the ‘largest’ CTV ad fraud scheme to date | Advertising | Campaign AsiaWhite Ops has uncovered what they report to be the largest-ever connected TV fraud operation in history, affecting more than 300 publishers and millions of dollars in ad spend.

Local TV Is Back (With an Assist From Coronavirus?) | The National Interest – yet broadcast TV isn’t in mix when experts talk about advertising at the present time

What really happens to the clothes you donate | Macleans – interesting complex supply chain for fibres and nothing. Also interesting how grading of garments stayed within the Asian diaspora formerly based in the British colonies of East Africa

Sorry Huawei, the P40 Pro without Google apps is just too broken to live with – probably one of the best rundowns on how the lack of access to Google mobile services is handicapping Huawei handsets

China’s top chipmaker says it can match Samsung on memory tech – Nikkei Asian Review – how much of it is stolen technology?

Contingency planning: where should brands be moving their ad spend? – GlobalWebIndex – an interesting read but needs the additional lens of channel effectiveness as well

Cam Girls, Coronavirus and Sex Online Now – The New York Times – it will be interesting to see if it continues on post crisis

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ICYMI | 万一你错过了| 당신이 그것을 놓친 경우에 대비해서

Reading Time: 5 minutes

Google acquires Pointy, a startup to help brick-and-mortar retailers list products online, for $163M | TechCrunchbuilt hardware and software technology to help physical retailers — specifically those that might not already have an extensive e-commerce storefront detailing in-store inventory — get their products discoverable online without any extra work – reminds me of the kind of thing you’d expect Tencent or Alibaba to do as China has led in O2O e-tailing

San Francisco’s Robot Restaurants Are Going out of Business – thin margins don’t support high capital costs of automation

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Cathay Pacific: Aircraft Changes & Flight Cuts to North America – SamChui.com – interesting cuts on previously big earning routes

Mediatel: Newsline: How the UK is quietly importing a sinister political phenomenon“I have read so many predictions and trends about journalism in the past few weeks. The most significant trend, mostly unacknowledged, is that of politicians realizing they do not need to provide access or engagement with journalists, or even tell the truth, to be electable.” – where is this going?

Make your China marketing pop with these pop culture tips – POP MART: the designer toy market in China is booming. Not that surprising given historic popularity in Hong Kong and Japan – in many respects culturally China is a laggard

Silicon Valley and National Security – United States Department of State – basically you’re all a bunch of Quislings

Fundamentals simply do not matter in China’s stock markets | Financial Times – Muddy Waters Research has demonstrated that for years, its also the reason why you should be wary of Chinese companies with foreign listings

Framed — Pixel Envythree paragraphs in and it is already setting up the idea that personal privacy and public safety are two opposing ends of a gradient. That’s simply not true. A society that has less personal privacy does not inherently have better public safety; Russia and Saudi Arabia are countries with respectable HDI scores, brutal censorship and surveillance, and higher murder rates than Australia, Denmark, France, and the United Kingdom

Sugar Bear’s Don’t Scandalize Mine was a go to record for me, but I’ve never seen a music video of it until now

What Does Taiwan’s Public Think About Election Interference From China? – The Diplomathyper-polarization in views between DPP and KMT supporters highlights the difficulty in addressing cybersecurity and China more broadly. To reach a consensus requires first acknowledging and disrupting the echo chambers in which disinformation campaigns thrive, then the government must implement election transparency policies to more easily expose disinformation efforts. However, with increasing animosity between parties, this consensus may be hard to reach. Citizens may also be concerned that any steps the government takes are limiting their freedom of speech or other rights (paywall)

China: no longer the place to be for young Singaporeans? | South China Morning Post – China no longer a place to do business

Try as It Might, Germany Isn’t Warming to Huawei – The DiplomatHighest on their list of concerns has been the risk of exposing the future German 5G network to large-scale espionage and data theft on behalf of corporate and political actors in China. In recent years, Germany’s intelligence agencies have reported a steady increase in Chinese government-directed espionage and hacking activities against German targets, primarily with the aim of acquiring corporate secrets. China is now considered the source of the majority of cyberattacks against Germany. In 2019, some of the largest German companies confirmed that they had been targeted by a new wave of cyberattacks that likely originated with the Chinese government. During a parliamentary hearing on the issue of Huawei in October, Thomas Halden­wang, the president of Germany’s domestic intelligence agency (Bundesverfassungsschutz), claimed that Chinese espionage and cyberattacks have been expanding into more and more sectors of the economy and the state. According to Haldenwang, while Chinese cyberattacks in Germany were previously focused primarily on private corporations and technology

China Manufacturing:”Elvis Has Left the Building” | China Law Blog – “China’s rising costs, tricky regulations and increasingly unstable geopolitical situation are forcing more manufacturers to move production elsewhere” and we should expect this exodus to gain speed in 2020, “despite the prospect of a minor US-China trade truce.”

Marketing research: Chinese celebrity brand endorsers – Daxue Consulting – Market Research China – interesting turnover in celebrities and increased focus on where there influence lies. China no longer has the Jackie Chan type celebrity endorsement. Which was all things to all people. Chan was legendary for the amount of products that he promoted which became a joke

Bose and HERE Fuel AR Experience Innovation By Combining Location and Audio Technologies – Semiconductor DigestHERE Technologies, a global leader in mapping and location platform services, today announced a collaboration with Bose Corporation to jointly enable their respective developer communities to deploy augmented reality (AR) location applications and services. This collaboration gives HERE developers access to the Bose AR platform and spatial-audio capabilities, and extends the HERE platform, positioning and mobile SDK location technologies to developers building audio AR applications and experiences. – ok so turn by turn direction or tourist style apps probably. The most interesting thing for me was that Bose AR isn’t just the audio enabled frames but recent noise cancelling headsets as well

SPH print newspaper ad sales dive 20% on year | Media | Campaign AsiaSingapore Press Holdings, the parent company of The Straits Times, Lianhe Zaobao, and other news publications, saw overall revenue drop 3.8% in the first quarter of fiscal 2020 – interesting acceleration. Part of which is down to media agencies making more money from digital and some due to changing consumer habits. I’ve started taking a print newspaper subscription again as I value the juxtaposition good print design can bring

NYT: Russian hackers successfully targeted Ukrainian gas company Burisma – AxiosPublic awareness of the Burisma hack cuts both ways politically. For former Vice President Joe Biden’s campaign, it means document dumps could happen at any time, with accompanying media frenzy and potentially damaging revelations. For the Trump campaign, it means that any such revelations will come pre-tainted with a Russian label

Hair Love,’ Sponsored by Dove, Earns an Oscar Nomination for Best Animated Short | Muse by Clio – poses interesting questions about the role of brands in media

John Lewis marketing boss Paula Nickolds departs before starting | The DrumAnusha Couttigane, principal fashion analyst at Kantar, said that whoever takes the lead will need to rethink its long-running, and arguably tired, festive advertising strategy which has relied on blockbuster, tear-jerker creative to encourage shoppers into stores. “John Lewis needs to continue evolving its digital marketing efforts. While the company’s Christmas mascot, the accident-prone dragon Excitable Edgar, was warmly received, the debut of the brand’s Christmas advert is simply not the event it once was,” – quite a burn right there.

Sonos hits Google with lawsuit over wireless speaker patents“Google has been blatantly and knowingly copying our patented technology” for years. Sonos and Google collaborated in 2013 to add the Play Music service to Sonos speakers, and more recently, the two worked to bring Google’s digital assistant to Sonos speakers, alongside Amazon’s counterpart, Alexa. “Despite our repeated and extensive efforts over the last few years,” Spence told the Times, “Google has not shown any willingness to work with us on a mutually beneficial solution. We’re left with no choice but to litigate,”

With nothing to lose, loners build future in China’s hollowed-out north – Reuters“Social classes are fixed,” Li said. “The poor can never achieve anything. When you encounter problems, if you can solve it, great. There’s not much you can do otherwise.” – interesting consumer comments that explain the slow down in China’s economic growth

Dark Patterns after the GDPR: Scraping Consent Pop-ups and Demonstrating their Influence by Nouns, Liccardi, Veal, Karger and KagalThe results of our empirical survey of CMPs today illustrates the extent to which illegal practices prevail, with vendors of CMPs turning a blind eye to — or worse, incentivising —- clearly illegal configurations of their systems. Enforcement in this area is sorely lacking. Data protection authorities should make use of automated tools like the one we have designed to expedite discovery and enforcement. Designers might help here to design tools for regulators, rather than just for users or for websites. Reg- ulators should also work further upstream and consider placing requirements on the vendors of CMPs to only allow compliant designs to be placed on the market. (PDF)

Unmasking the secret landlords buying up America | Reveal – some 25 percent of US residential property is now owned by anonymous shell companies

Daring Fireball: Apple’s One Remaining Use of the Word ‘Macintosh’ – probably not the smartest move given the amount of IP and goodwill in the brand and rapacious competitors who make early Microsoft look like the Bill & Melinda Gates foundation