Articles tagged marginal utility

14 Sep 2006 // 9:00 PM

Sympathy for the Middleman

Despite mounting debt, it's imperative that we continue to laugh at calls for austerity and conservation, and celebrate those noble marketers that keep us consuming -- whoops, I mean innovating.

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20 Aug 2006 // 9:00 PM

Oh, the Tangled Webs We Weave

The apparent escape into the cultural niches available online will eventually lead directly into data-collecting advertisers' traps.

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13 Jul 2006 // 9:00 PM

flag Creativity

Like Calvinists who stockpile life's finer things in hopes of shoring up their sense of themselves as elect, hipsters surround themselves with the trappings of creativity and trust that this substantiates their claim to being cool.

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7 Jun 2006 // 9:00 PM

The Underground Empire

Are the outposts of underground culture -- bookstores, record stores, etc. -- places where American curiosity and enthusiasm are kept alive, or places where ingrained snobbery is allowed to snuff it out?

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4 May 2006 // 9:00 PM

Headphones and Head Space

The quest for a perfect synthesis of public and private existence may lead us to online 'metaverses' where we don't really exist at all.

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12 Apr 2006 // 9:00 PM

The Attention Economy

Amatuer online blogs and MySpace pages give currency to a growing 'attention economy', wherein the most successful have garnered the most flattering friends - and advertisers.

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8 Mar 2006 // 9:00 PM

The Snacks Attack Society

Shopping, cooking, eating, washing dishes... it's all such a time-sucking, distracting chore. Best to wrap it all up in plastic and hurry it along, lest lost time eat at you.

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13 Feb 2006 // 9:00 PM

Shopping Paranoid

Beware, be wary on your hunt for the perfect (you name it); for you are the hunted.

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9 Jan 2006 // 9:00 PM

Information Whirlwind

The prestige of sharing an extensive downloaded music library is wearing so thin that it's becomming almost as transparent as that ever-blowing cyber wind.

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Holiday Shopping: The Good Fight

Warriors of Consumption, Black Friday Masses, The Joys of Discretionary Spending, The Privilege of Spending.

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15 Nov 2005 // 9:00 PM

The Usefulness Trap

Removed from the velvet-draped display; torn from the colorful packaging; off the rack and in the closet... it's just not all it seemed to be. The use value falls so short of the hype value of commodities, that actual ownership and use of a thing is disappointing if not disillusioning.

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3 Oct 2005 // 9:00 PM

The Customer Is Always Wrong

Among other things, customer service is little more than survelliance with a smile. The end of craven customer service could return some dignity to the world of consumption.

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8 Sep 2005 // 9:00 PM

Buy Me Beautiful

Thanks to cosmetic surgery, our bodies are now commodities.

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11 Aug 2005 // 9:00 PM

The Consumer in the Kitchen

Nixon and Khrushchev's kitchen debate taught Americans that our citizenry is 'free'-- to shop.

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8 Jul 2005 // 12:00 AM

Marginal Utility -- The 'Me' Syndrome -- The glamorization of the rich inner life is the primary achievement of the culture industry, since what it sells is the kind of ripe fantasy that only one with a rich inner life would prefer to actual living.

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13 Jun 2005 // 12:00 AM

Pornography simplifies sex by making it a commodity. In the desire to accumulate more, intimacy is irretrievably lost.

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On Taste tracking software; is it an anonymous angel? or something rather sinister?

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13 Apr 2005 // 12:00 AM

Should the majority rule in terms of what art our society makes? Audience-vote-driven entertainment effaces the art being voted on and supplants it with the audience's self-regard, so that it all merely reflects the power the audience feels. Expertise on the subject is irrelevant; being heard and counted among the voters is all that matters.

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9 Mar 2005 // 12:00 AM

Why try to form a labor union at your local Wal-Mart when you can strike an equally seditious blow against the system by jerking off to photos of women in latex underwear? No matter how much we label pornography's users as 'addicts' or 'degenerates' and tout religious values, porn is not an immoral anomaly; it's a capitalist inevitability.

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26 Jan 2005 // 12:00 AM

In a land of plenty, the commodity of respect -- the sense of being socially recognized -- continues to be rationed, rendered scarce.

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More Recent Articles
//Mixed media

Because Blood Is Drama: Considering Carnage in Video Games and Other Media

// Moving Pixels

"It's easy to dismiss blood and violence as salacious without considering why it is there, what its context is, and what it might communicate.

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