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ICYMI | 万一你错过了| 당신이 그것을 놓친 경우에 대비해서

Reading Time: 4 minutes

China Inc. goes global. Transnational and national networks of China’s globalizing business elite: Review of International Political Economy: Vol 0, No 0The article finds substantial transnational linkages between the globalizing Chinese business elite and the corporate elite networks of Western globalized capitalism – through corporate affiliations and policy-planning affiliations. At the same time the analysis reveals the strong ties of the Chinese state-business elites to the party-state. Rather than presenting an outright threat to the liberal order and the corporate elite networks at its core, or indicating a co-optation scenario, the article finds evidence for a more hybrid scenario in which China as a corporate actor within the liberal world reveals its two faces: partially and pragmatically integrating and adapting to the liberal modes of networking, while simultaneously holding on to its distinctive state-directed capitalism and the (Party) direction this entails

Impostor Syndrome from Luxury Consumption | Journal of Consumer Researchresearch proposes that luxury consumption can be a double-edged sword: while luxury consumption yields status benefits, it can also make consumers feel inauthentic, producing what we call the impostor syndrome from luxury consumption. As a result, paradoxically, luxury consumption may backfire and lead consumers to behave less confidently due to their undermined feelings of self-authenticity. Feelings of inauthenticity from luxury consumption may arise because consumers perceive luxury as an undue privilege. These feelings are less pronounced among consumers with high levels of chronic psychological entitlement, and they are reduced when consumers’ sense of entitlement is temporarily boosted. The effects are robust across studies conducted in the lab and in field settings such as the Metropolitan Opera, Martha’s Vineyard, a luxury shopping center, and the Upper East Side in New York, featuring relevant participant populations including luxury target segments and consumption contexts including consumers’ reflections on their actual past luxury purchase

I used Netflix’s DVD mail service to watch movies instead of TV for a year | Slate – interesting observations about media consumption

How Much Are Cars Spying On Their Owners? – SlashdotOn a recent drive, a 2017 Chevrolet collected my precise location. It stored my phone’s ID and the people I called. It judged my acceleration and braking style, beaming back reports to its maker General Motors over an always-on Internet connection… Modern vehicles don’t just have one computer. There are multiple, interconnected brains that can generate up to 25 gigabytes of data per hour from sensors all over the car… Most hide what they’re collecting and sharing behind privacy policies written in the kind of language only a lawyer’s mother could love… The Tesla Model 3 can collect video snippets from the car’s many cameras. Coming next: face data, used to personalize the vehicle and track driver attention… Coming 5G cellular networks promise to link cars to the Internet with ultra-fast, ultra-high-capacity connections. As wireless connections get cheaper and data becomes more valuable, anything the car knows about you is fair game. GM’s view, echoed by many other automakers, is that we gave them permission for all of this… Five years ago, 20 automakers signed on to volunteer privacy standards, pledging to “provide customers with clear, meaningful information about the types of information collected and how it is used,” as well as “ways for customers to manage their data.” But when I called eight of the largest automakers, not even one offered a dashboard for customers to look at, download and control their data…. GM’s privacy policy, which the company says it will update before the end of 2019, says it may “use anonymized information or share it with third parties for any legitimate business purpose.” Such as whom? “The details of those third-party relationships are confidential,” said GM spokesman David Caldwell.

In their own words: why voters abandoned Labour | YouGov – a certain amount of post-rationalisation in this type of research, read with caution. I’d also recommend Datapraxis analysis Tory Landslide, Progressive Split

Catalyst and Cohesion – Worms and VirusesIf there is one word I would use to describe what makes an Apple-like experience, it’s “cohesion”. Any Apple enthusiast is aware of the company’s Human Interface Guidelines (HIG). The Macintosh has had one since 1984. iOS has had one since the launch of the App Store in 2008. Even WatchOS and tvOS have their own versions. Apple has had opinions about building cohesive user experiences for as long as Apple has been building user experiences – the context dependence of each platform is what makes ‘building once, running many places’ so hard for all but the simplest widgets

China’s $1.3tn global spending spree will collapse, says top US official | Financial TimesChina’s international investments were “100 per cent” like a house of cards because of “debt overload, poor infrastructure, bribes [and] lack of transparency”.  “Everything comes around, it’s only a matter of time. It was only a matter of time before WeWork came around, right?,” Mr Boehler said, referring to the distressed office rental start-up that unravelled this year. “We have to be there as an alternative because I could see China take down a whole bunch of emerging countries . . . there will be more and more cracks and then the glass will break,” he added

Debenhams sparks fears as it seeks fresh rent cuts | Business | The Sunday TimesThe retail chain is said to be targeting a further 25% reduction on about 20 stores in exchange for scrapping break clauses in the leases. The move has sparked panic among some property owners, who have sounded out rival Mike Ashley about taking on the sites when the break clauses become active

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Machines for emoting

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Machines for emoting, is the problem of our internet in the palm of our hands? Over the past few years the sentiment towards the internet has changed dramatically.


Before the internet

Going back to the 1960s, my parents told me about the ‘No Blacks, No Irish, No Dogs’ signs. These were found in many British towns at the same time that hippies were advocating peace and love. And when Enoch Powell made his rivers of blood speech; 70 percent of British people surveyed agreed with him.

Real world media and underground subcultures traded blows over racism at a slower pace. Though many of those blows were real.

Is it the internet?

This is no longer the information superhighway of Al Gore. The reasons for the changes aren’t obvious. One popular narrative is that algorithms are to blame. It is common to hear that narrative in news media.

But academic research suggests that it isn’t ‘radicalisation’ by algorithms isn’t true.

Is it the devices we use?

There were smartphones before the iPhone. They were made by numerous companies including Nokia, Palm, SonyEricsson, Panasonic and even Microsoft (who partnered with a number of manufacturers). In Japan, NTT DoCoMo put the ‘smart’ in the network through iMode rather than building a mini-PC in the phone itself.

Smartphones had initially started with business users and gradually broadened its base. Quite early on, phones focused on social functions, a classic example would be Danger’s Sidekick model which was designed for messaging. Nokia first popularised the app store and security signed apps that Apple and Google built upon.

The move to the ‘pictures under glass’ interface that we now know from Android and iPhone devices coincided with a surge on social.

Social media existed before 2010, but not as we now know it. Few of us had smartphones in 2009. Facebook’s active user base has grown sevenfold over the past 10 years, and there simply aren’t enough people for that to happen again. Instagram and WhatsApp were both launched about a decade ago, and swiftly absorbed into the mother of all social networks. As for Twitter, let me simply note that Donald Trump only started tweeting in earnest in 2011.

Tim Hartford in the FT

Did the pictures under glass metaphor and apps designed to utilise it make social too easy to share? It allows people to emote. From mild emotions usually expressed with emoticons or GIFs to visceral anger that seems to flood Twitter – there seems to be evidence of correlation if not causality. So how can design slow the hose pipe down to encourage more considered responses?

If that’s the case then user experience design has to play a part in resolving some of the worst issues online, given that people can’t seem to be able to respond appropriately by moderating their behaviour.

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ICYMI | 万一你错过了| 당신이 그것을 놓친 경우에 대비해서

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Pentagon wants open-source 5G plan in campaign against Huawei – ok in theory only

It Seemed Like a Popular Chat App. It’s Secretly a Spy Tool. – The New York Times – Emirati’s do with Totok what the Chinese have been doing for years with WeChat TOMS/Skype etc. Totok is apparently popular in Qatar as it allows VoIP without a VPN – so expat workers use it to connect with their families at home.

Totok messenger

Made in America – On US staffed hacking team in UAE. Interesting investigation by Reuters

The decade of the drop: why do we still stand in line? | How To Spend It – experience. It’s diametrically opposite to one stop shopping

Apple Captures 66% of the Smartphone Industry’s Profits in Q3 leaving all of their Competitors Combined in the Dust – Patently Appleit is becoming a challenge for Chinese smartphone brands to increase their smartphone ASPs and margins due to a combination of longer consumer holding periods and Apple lowering pricing on some key SKUs, which has limited the headroom that Chinese vendors had used to increase their ASPs – in the long term Huawei having to be vertically integrated all the way up the stack could be to their benefit

Nike’s Jordan brand just had its first billion-dollar quarter — Quartz – interesting that it has taken over 30 years to get to a billion dollar quarter, yet Jordan is at least ten years past its cultural peak

In Focus: Pet Shop Boys 6th December 2019 | Listen on NTS – amazing delve into their career

Reality TV stars auditioned to ‘promote’ poison diet drink on Instagram – BBC News – Oh my gosh, this is as good as watching re-runs of Brass Eye

Pig Irons at the ‘Plex | Margins – essay on consulting firms well worth reading

Gildo Zegna: tailoring masculinity for changing tastes | Financial Timesluxury goods industry is feeling the heat of technological disruption, social upheaval and identity politics. Furthermore, within the high end fashion industry few items of clothing are facing more pressure from falling consumer demand than the one that made the Zegna family rich: the traditional men’s suit. “The big challenge we face is a rethinking of masculinity,” he says. – I think streetwear is interesting because of the reassurance it provides on masculinity. The basics of streetwear go back to the mid-century sports basics. The hooded top, jeans, t-shirts, plaid shirts, Letterman jacket, track jacket etc

Facebook awaits EU opinion in privacy case | Financial Times – interesting how wide the impact of this case could be in terms of things like credit card transaction data etc. (paywall) – Introducing a new database category – the predictive database – hmmm

A Surveillance Net Blankets China’s Cities, Giving Police Vast Powers – The New York TimesChinese authorities are knitting together old and state-of-the-art technologies — phone scanners, facial-recognition cameras, face and fingerprint databases and many others — into sweeping tools for authoritarian control, according to police and private databases examined by The New York Times. Once combined and fully operational, the tools can help police grab the identities of people as they walk down the street, find out who they are meeting with and identify who does and doesn’t belong to the Communist Party. The United States and other countries use some of the same techniques to track terrorists or drug lords. Chinese cities want to use them to track everybody.

Is LVMH’s Digital Transformation Working? | Luxury Society“Over the last few years our market has become highly fragmented,” it added. “Customer journeys and purchasing habits have become more complex. Now, in addition to magazines and other traditional media, our customers – especially young people – use a range of digital options to stay informed, communicate with friends and shop. Brand awareness and customer engagement are built on these many different touchpoints.”