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ICYMI | 万一你错过了| 당신이 그것을 놓친 경우에 대비해서

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Zero touch spaces – Wunderman Thompson Intelligence  – I am actually liking these Logan’s Run style personal space bubbles. I also understand Wunderman Thomson’s concerns over zero touch spaces being close, but still isolated. I think of zero touch spaces as a physical manifestation of what we do mentally through cocooning with gadgets such as iPods, smartphones (and apps) and noise-cancelling headphones. Before that there was social networks (rather than real world networking), sat navs, etc. Both the zero touch spaces and cocooning puts distance between us and the world around us.

Geodesic
Fiona Paton geodesic dome

Government minister Liz Truss. get pwned on Brexit, international trade and the WTO by Adam S Posen of the Peterson Institute of International Economics. The discussion is so one-sided, it is like watching a naked drunkard getting mauled by a polite but hungry polar bear. Truss’ ministerial portfolio is international trade. It’s exceptionally grim to watch if you’re based in the UK.

Ad Aged: Talmudic, Biblical, Keynesian and Advertising.I have taken a different path. I always have and I always will. I try to do what I think is right and smart and good—and mostly difficult, not what is popular, obvious and pandering. Never trust anything from anyone who spends a good portion of their time practicing expressions in front of the mirror – some savage burns in this post

How a Chinese agent used LinkedIn to hunt for targets – BBC NewsThe use of LinkedIn is brazen, but not surprising, said Matthew Brazil, the co-author of Chinese Communist Espionage: An Intelligence Primer. “I think lots of worldwide intelligence agencies probably use it to seek out sources of information,” he said. “Because it’s in everybody’s interest who is on LinkedIn to put their whole career on there for everybody to see – it’s an unusually valuable tool in that regard.” He said that commissioning consultant reports is a way for agents to get “a hook” into a potentially valuable source who might later be convinced to supply classified information. I’d be surprised if LinkedIn wasn’t used in this way.

You Won’t Find These Masks at 7-Eleven – The New York TimesAlthough the pandemic will end at some point, he added, “people will still be using masks because they’re afraid.” While it’s unclear how well some of these more ambitious masks will fare with consumers, one innovation has been a clear hit: face coverings with high-tech fabrics that are said to provide superior comfort or protection. As summer temperatures rise, masks made of materials intended to keep wearers cool are in demand. People who have been wearing reusable cloth masks — including those sent by the Japanese government to every household in the country — are finding them ill suited for the heat and humidity of summer in central Japan, much less Singapore or Hong Kong. – That humidity also has issues for skin conditions beneath the masks offering beauty product opportunities. More design-related posts here.

Parfums Givenchy Debuts Makeup in Animal Crossing – WWD – we’re seeing more of these brand activity for a few reasons. Lockdown gave the game increased cultural relevance. The game has a significant amount of female users. Like the original Atari games it isn’t too childish or gender-specific. Animal Crossing’s creator tools allowed consumers to bring brands to the platform.

Jibo, the social robot that was supposed to die, is getting a second life – The Verge – interesting how NTT is looking to build an all digital version, I think the physical artefact is as important as the digital being

China’s two-child policy means more babies named after mum | Today OnlineGiving the mother’s surname to a child is gaining traction in Chinese cities, defying deeply entrenched family traditions in the country. The country’s one-child rule, which ran from 1979 to 2016, meant daughters have also been tasked with safeguarding their parents’ wealth and bloodline — previously this had been the preserve of male heirs. This caused a shift in some family’s attitudes but it was the law change to allow couples to have two children that has ignited the trend for kids to be given the maternal name. Now, some parents are giving the father’s family name to the first born and the mother’s to the second child.

He’s 83, She’s 84, and They Model Other People’s Forgotten Laundry – The New York Times – these are the cutest influencers

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ICYMI | 万一你错过了| 당신이 그것을 놓친 경우에 대비해서

Reading Time: 3 minutes

New York’s Problems Are America’s Problems Now“Most cities are the same animal at a different scale,” Esteban Moro, a physicist who studies cities and measured New Yorkers’ interactions during the shutdown, told me. Bigger city, smaller city—it doesn’t make much of a difference, Moro says. You’ll meet about 5,000 people a year.

Apple wants your iPhone to replace your passport and driver’s license | Appleinsider – I know WeChat had similar aspirations for Chinese ID cards and drivers licence

Opinion | How China Scammed Hong Kong – The New York Times – ignore the click bait title, it’s a nice summary of the national security law and points out how the basic law allowed this gap. More on Hong Kong here.

American firms’ move into China over past 20 years threatens US ability to lead and compete: report | South China Morning PostUS MNEs’ reliance on China as a source of sales and a pivotal hub for global manufacturing poses a risk of solidifying dependencies for selected industries that bear on US national security. Furthermore, such reliance threatens to heighten the cost of supply chain diversification

Pressured by China, E.U. Softens Report on Covid-19 Disinformation – The New York TimesBeijing’s efforts to curtail mentions of the virus’s origins in China, in part by blaming the United States for spreading the disease internationally. It noted that Beijing had criticized France as slow to respond to the pandemic and had pushed false accusations that French politicians used racist slurs against the head of the World Health Organization

The Hustle on Coupang – a Korean analogue to Amazon that’s expanding their business

LinkedIn | Baiba Matisone – 60 behavioral biases to better understand the consumers.

US Attorney General William Barr says American businesses ‘part of problem’ in tech war with China | South China Morning PostBarr portrayed parts of the US business community as ingrates because “they’re willing – ultimately, many of them – to sacrifice the long-term viability of their companies for short-term profit, so they can get their stock options and move into the golf resort”. – I found this a much more profound statement on so many levels

Typography – Goldman Sachs Design – Goldman Sachs put out its own font under a fairly permissive licence

How This Electronics Juggernaut Got Its Start in a Bombed-Out Department Store • Gear Patrol – nice intro to the history of Sony

How a Billion Dollar Eyewear Company Started in the Back of a Honda Civic • Gear Patrol – ‘define problems, find solutions, wrap them in art’

Facebook executive admits to ‘trust deficit’ on call with advertisers | Financial Times – stating the obvious, with Trump-related decisions is just latest in long line of trust related issues for Facebook from brand safety issues with content to analytics

Dove Soap’s Owner Is Criticized Over Skin-Lightening Cream – WSJ – unfortunately a set of consumers want the product and if Unilever didn’t sell it other people would

I love you. You love me. | Ad Ageds – well worth while reading as it brings commitment into focus

Step Chickens and the Rise of TikTok ‘Cults’ – The New York TimesCults on TikTok aren’t the ideological ones most people are familiar with. Instead, they are open fandoms revolving around a single creator. Much like the “stans” of pop figures and franchises, members of TikTok cults stream songs, buy merch, create news update accounts and fervently defend their leaders in the comment sections of posts. The biggest difference is that TikTok’s cult leaders are not independently famous. They’re upstart creators building a fan base on social media. Ms. Ong represents a relatively new kind of influencer, one who has seized a time of great isolation and idleness to capture the interest of a rapt user base. “I made this video where I was speaking into my phone camera like, ‘Hey guys I think we should start a religion,’” she said in a phone interview on Friday. “Then, I was like, ‘Let’s start a cult.’”

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ICYMI | 万一你错过了| 당신이 그것을 놓친 경우에 대비해서

Reading Time: 6 minutes

The power of niche | Campaign magazine – Dave Trott on GOOP – The New York Times said: “The weirder GOOP went, the more its readers rejoiced. Every time there was a negative story about her or her company all it did was bring more people to the site.” Paltrow told a class of Harvard students: “What I do is create a cultural firestorm, and I can monetise those eyeballs.” – cultural firestorm or memorable cultural industrial accident? I agree with Trott to a point. But I can’t work out if GOOP is doing ‘good’ outrage like Benetton managed to do with its ad campaigns, or ‘bad’ outrage like Michael O’Leary at Ryanair. Secondly, you might buy GOOP earrings but would you tell anyone where you bought them? Would they be judging you because you’re a GOOP customer. The problem GOOP has is that it’s not causing outrage with the old or conservative per se. It’s more likely to be customer’s peers thinking that as a GOOP customer you buy into bunkum of Palthrow. Brand neighbourhoods are still important and GOOP nestles comfortably in crank corner with David Icke and Uri Geller. More on beauty related stories here.

Benetton USSR & USA ad
Benetton ad from the 1980s which contrasted with the Reagan-era Cold War sentiment of the Soviet ‘evil empire’

South Korea’s Government Explores Move From Windows To Linux Desktop | SlashdotThe reason for this is simple. It’s to reduce software licensing costs and the government’s reliance on Windows. As Choi Jang-hyuk, the head of the Ministry of Strategy and Finance, said, “We will resolve our dependency on a single company while reducing the budget by introducing an open-source operating system.” – back in the day South Korean online security depended on support for ActiveX, how far things have moved on

Slick Inbox – interesting idea. BUT RSS, VIP section in mail.app are all competitors

Thread by @thezedwards on speech recognition / natural language processing – interesting how it can be used (whether or not it is used is another matter) for marketing, surveillance etc

How Your Laptop Ruined Your Life | The AtlanticEarlier this week, a woman managed to find a seat next to me on the train, took out her laptop, and started plugging away at a spreadsheet. The sight filled me with dread, as it does every time I spot a fellow commuter writing code or finessing a PowerPoint while I listen to podcasts. I suddenly became much more aware of the hard, thin edge of my own work computer, digging into my thigh through my tote bag. – Whatever happened to thinking time?

Sony as Automaker | Akihabara News – it will be interesting to see Sony go against Tesla

Trump’s immigration enforcement agents use cellphone location data to track individuals for detention – WSJ / Boing Boing – I’d be surprised if they weren’t doing this

What Happens When a High-Tech Apparel Brand Shares the Same Name as the Company that Backed the Controversial Iowa Caucus App? — The Fashion LawNot nearly as under-the-radar as ACRONYM, the political organization, ACRONYM, the apparel company, is, nonetheless, situated more behind-the-scenes than the majority of its peers. As writer Adam Wray detailed in 2013, “You’d be forgiven for not knowing much about ACRONYM.” Despite having significant clout when it comes to technologically-advanced apparel and amassing a list of famous fans (think: Kanye West, John Mayer, Jason Statham, best-selling author William Gibson, and mixed martial arts champ Max Holloway, just to name a few), “the company never advertises and with no public relations strategy to speak of, its founders are tough to reach.”  Hugh and his co-founder slash business partner Michaela Sachenbacher “prefer to let their designs” – which are heavy on the GORE-TEX technology and utilitarian-focused hacks, and too expensive for most – “speak for themselves.” Yet, “whether you know it or not, [ACRONYM has] been pacing the vanguard of technically-focused fashion for nearly two decades.” – having worked in an office with the unfortunate name of ISIS House, an acronym that it shared with a terrorist organisation I can understand some of the pain for Errolson Hugh and company

精進カップラーメン | zen-foods – vegan friendly instant noodles, I’d be surprised if these don’t start appearing in Whole Foods soon

FBI Says China ‘Biggest Threat’ to US Law Enforcement as Arrests Skyrocket in 2020 | RFA‘We believe that no country poses a greater threat than Communist China’ – but what are they going to do about it?

‘A bit impersonal’: The rise of influencer marketing agencies rankles influencers – Digiday“When I reach out to brands directly, they tell me to apply for their programs through their affiliated network, which means I lose whatever personal connections I might’ve had and the ability to negotiate,” Groffman said. A company he had worked with for years recently referred him to its influencer network, he added. “Influencer marketing has finally matured as an industry,” explained Kristy Sammis, executive director of the Influencer Marketing Association, in an email. “Brands are now willing to allocate significant budget to strategic influencer programs. This means they need scale, benchmarks, and guarantees. That’s simply not possible with one-on-one influencer relationships.” Currently, influencers lack a standardized set of rates, yet a myriad factors can go into setting a price. That said, a $10 cost per thousand impressions is a baseline for influencers working on Instagram and Instagram Stories, according to Village Marketing founder Vickie Segar. She added that for every 100,000 followers, that rate grants an influencer $1,000 a post. Plus, companies and influencers might additionally negotiate usage rights and exclusivity, which could increase the fee. Terms vary by company, but payment can take from 30 days to 120 days – it’s probably because brands don’t want to have to filter out chancers and assholes themselves. Secondly, algorithms mean influencers are no longer an effective form of reach

The Era of Antisocial Social Media | HBRsaying that after years spent constructing carefully curated online identities and accumulating heaps of online “friends,” they want to be themselves and make real friends based on shared interests. They’re also craving privacy, safety, and a respite from the throngs of people on social platforms — throngs that now usually include their parents. To reach these younger audiences on social, marketers are going to have to re-think their approach. The first step is to understand the distinct characteristics of these more closed, and often more private and interactive online spaces. Since I believe that naming a trend helps provide a framework for understanding it, I have dubbed these spaces “digital campfires.” – to misquote Satre Hell is other people. From a brand perspective digital campfires are more attractive than the digital dumpster fires that channels like Twitter and YouTube often descend into

Barnes & Noble suspends reissues of classics with new images | AP News – criticised on social media as ‘literary’ black face

Mayfair robbery: Three men hunted after man stabbed for £115,000 watch | UK News | Sky News – events like this will reduce the UK’s attractiveness for luxury sales

Daring Fireball: My 2019 Apple Report Card – well worth reading, though I think Apple should have showed some backbone in Hong Kong – I have never been so disappointed in a brand

A mercenary army of the poor? Technological change and the demographic composition of the post-9/11 U.S. military: Journal of Strategic Studies: Vol 0, No 0the U.S. military no longer primarily recruits individuals from the most disadvantaged socio-economic backgrounds. Technological, tactical, operational and doctrinal changes have led to a change in the demand for personnel. As a result, on different metrics such as family income and family wealth as well as cognitive abilities, military personnel are on average like the average American citizen or slightly better – there is also the aspect that military service runs in the family so previous generations may have been lifted into the middle class by the GI Bill

When China’s Long Game Short Circuits | Echowallmany of the examples of long-term policymaking in China collapse under closer scrutiny, whether in the area of environmental protection, infrastructure or population policy. For example, China’s solar power growth has been driven by government subsidies, resulting in market distortion, huge debt and waste. In the construction of infrastructure, such as the high-speed rail system and local airports, there is lack of coordination and long-term planning – not terribly surprising

My daughter’s TikTok triumph and the fleeting nature of internet fame | Financial Times – just wait until the advertising algorithm crushes reach again

Inside Huawei’s first 5G phone: Teardown reveals rush to innovate – Nikkei Asian Review – interesting analysis of the design approach. The design is surprisingly messy. This implies a few things. Huawei had to rush as it was behind. The phone isn’t as ‘premium’ as Huawei would like to believe, its the smartphone equivalent of having Irish travellers tarmac your drive. Huawei is leaving money on the table by not optimising their designs.

UK mobile operators warned to deliver on rural ‘not spots’ | Financial Times – I’d laugh if mobile operators just walked away from it all

What the Hell Is China Doing on the Dark Side of the Moon? – projection of power and influence