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ICYMI | 万一你错过了| 당신이 그것을 놓친 경우에 대비해서

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Amazon Restricts How Rival Device Makers Buy Ads on Its Site – WSJ – interesting that his is confirmed by both according to Amazon employees and executives at rival companies and advertising firms. Would rival device makers have an antitrust case? It would be harder for Amazon to argue that it doesn’t have a monopoly position in retail. More on Amazon here.

China’s Sina Agrees to Go Private in Deal Valued at $2.6 Billion – Bloomberg – will probably list on a home stock market like Shanghai, Shenzhen or Hong Kong

Oxford moves to protect students from China’s Hong Kong security law | The Guardian – one can see this is a direct reaction to Hong Kong’s national security law and also as a reaction to Chinese influence operations on campuses across the western world

Will The Chinese-Owned French Luxury Brand Baccarat Survive? | Jing Daily – combination of bad management and circumstances. It is interesting that the owner Coco Chu has disappeared

Mark Riston: It’s time for ‘share of search’ to replace ‘share of voice’Peckham’s Formula posits that when you launch a brand you should set its advertising budget based on your desired share of market. Specifically, your initial share of voice should be 1.5 times the desired market share you want to achieve by the end of the brand’s second year.

Older People Have Become Younger – Neuroscience News – in terms of their mental faculties

Netflix called out for “Three-Body” author Liu Cixin’s Xinjiang remark — Quartz – Mulan seems to have become a verb in US media in a similar way to ‘it’s all gone Pete Tong’ in late 1980s vernacular English. Although originally ‘gone Pete Tong’ meant that something had gone commercial and mainstream – in effect a sellout, which was a bad thing in the 1990s, when credibility was everything. Netflix might be able to see dramas into China a la the BBC and Sherlock; but I can’t see it being allowed to be a platform. China already has QQVideo iQiyi and PPTV

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ICYMI | 万一你错过了| 당신이 그것을 놓친 경우에 대비해서

Reading Time: 3 minutes

LG Launches Hair Growth Helmet to Combat Hair Loss | HYPEBAE – this looks totally legit. NOT. Yes, the FDA has certified other hair growth helmet treatments, but that was to indicate that they wouldn’t harm you or interfere with medications. It doesn’t validate the hair growth helmet actually working. But on the other hand lasers in the helmet….. More beauty category related content here.

Why loneliness fuels populism | Financial Timesdepicting loneliness solely in terms of how connected we feel to our friends, neighbours and colleagues risks occluding its other potent forms. Loneliness is political as well as personal, economic as well as social. It is also about feeling disconnected from our fellow citizens and political leaders, and detached from our work and our employer.

“Buy British”: The viability of a nationalist commercial policy | VOX, CEPR Policy Portalattempts by successive UK governments in the 1970s and early 1980s to initiate such import substitution policies were fraught with economic and legal difficulties. Indeed, accelerating globalisation and the rapid growth of imports in intermediate products for assembly into ‘British’ goods raise significant problems in defining a ‘national’ product – and the growth of tradable services (such as insurance, education and healthcare) presents an even more intractable problem

Arkady Bukh: Man in the Middle | CyberScoop – go-to lawyer for hackers

China bans Australian academics in apparent tit-for-tat retaliation | South China Morning Post – this has followed soon after a good report by Alex Joske and book by Clive Hamilton on China’s influence activities abroad

Facebook removes fake accounts with links to China and Philippines | The Guardian – Facebook says it has removed hundreds of coordinated fake accounts with links to individuals in China and in the Filipino military that were interfering in the politics of the Philippines and the US – not very surprising. More details in the South China Morning Post – How a Chinese network of fake Facebook accounts influenced online debate on South China Sea, US politics | South China Morning Post 

Ebay ex-CEO, PR head shared texts about taking down critics: DOJ – Business Insider – probably one of the most disturbing and bizarre things that I’ve read in a while

China has the upper hand in corporate proxy wars with US | Financial TimesMr Trump gave Mr Xi what he wanted on ZTE — a reprieve in the form of a new US commerce department settlement that allowed it to stay in business — and mistakenly assumed that this concession would smooth over the other matters. China quickly pocketed the ZTE present but continued to withhold approval of the Qualcomm-NXP deal. When the trade talks later started to unravel, Mr Xi let Qualcomm-NXP languish in regulatory limbo, where it eventually died. – Trump gave a concession too early

How a local messaging app defeated WhatsApp in Vietnam – messaging app Zalo has been taking the country by storm for nearly a decade now. Zalo’s got a pretty firm grip on Vietnamese consumers. And now that it’s integrated mobile payment service ZaloPay into its messaging app, there’s plenty of potential for it to expand beyond being just a means of communication.

The landlords are back – The families of China’s pre-Communist elite remain privileged | China | The EconomistThe old elite began to suffer almost as soon as the Communist Party won the Chinese civil war in 1949. China’s new rulers quickly set about seizing land from people in the countryside, redistributing it among the landless, confiscating private businesses and executing many rural landlords and people who had worked for the overthrown Nationalist regime

Listen to an unheard Steve Jobs NeXT keynote from 1988“But why it matters is that those explorations and that fun were in the end quite significant. It’s always useful to look back and to realize that even though the tech itself might seem quite primitive today, the people were already sophisticated. We know a lot more facts, and we can do more things, but I’m not sure we have gotten that much wiser.”

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Things that caught my eye this week

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Frank Herbert was interviewed in 1965 about the origins of Dune. He started researching an article on the control of sand dunes. He makes the fluid mechanics of sand dunes sound fascinating. That was the start point for him creating a science fiction epic. In the interview he covers a wide range of issues including environmentalism, colonialism and philosophy. He also talks about his process of working through is copy as an oral product that happened to be in books.

Herbert is very self aware of his own writing and analytical in his process. He is also critical of people recording, rather than experiencing events. This was fascinating to read some four decades before Instagram culture.

Here is a later talk at UCLA from 1985 with Frank Herbert as a bonus.

Palace the streetwear brand have collaborated with the Happy Mondays for a capsule collection. It’s interesting to see Shaun Ryder and Bez still inspiring and being relevant some 25 years after the peak of their cultural relevance. More streetwear related content here.

COVID comes to Sesame Street. Oscar The Grouch stars in a mask etiquette. Admittedly this comes with a grouchy reason: that he doesn’t want to see children’s happy smiling faces. Sesame Street hits out of the park again on content.

Sesame Street – wear a mask with Oscar PSA

George Carlin mashed up with Mad Max: Fury Road. It completely changes the feel of the film and is a stinging indictment of human behaviour.

Finally an amazing collection of 1980s TV advertisements and station idents Beta MAX – YouTube. What struck me about this channel was the variety of categories that used television advertising extensively for brand building and activation. Some of the creative would still stand up today and were strikingly similar to work that I did for Unilever.