Author Archives: Simon Chandler

Responsibility in the Age of Socially Mediated Terrorism

What is responsibility? In a world where ISIS have claimed responsibility for the tragic New Year shooting at the Reina nightclub in Istanbul, and where they’ve done much the same for an alarmingly long list of attacks in 2016, this question isn’t without its importance. Even if it may initially seem too simple to be […]

Equip (Kevin Hein) Interview for Bandcamp – Full Transcript

1. I Dreamed of a Palace in the Sky is your first release as Equip, but I’m aware that you’ve been responsible for other records in the vaporwave genre (and beyond). Could you tell us a little bit about the musical trajectory you followed up until your debut as Equip? I started making computer music around 2008, […]

Amazon Go, or Amazon Stay A Little More?

Recently, a report by Cantor Fitzgerald found that one of the main reasons why Amazon were “blowing away [its] competitors” was simply that shoppers were spending more time on its mobile platform than on others. Compared to Target’s 20 minutes and Walmart’s slightly less impressive 14, consumers were apparently spending an average of 103 minutes […]

Don’t Expect a Technological Solution to Fake News

Maybe I’ll get charged for spouting fake news for saying this, but there’s nothing Facebook, Google or any other tech company can do to stamp out fake news. No way, they can’t do it, and this “can’t” works on several levels. It’s not technically feasible, it’s not practically feasible, and it’s politically and morally dubious. […]

The Internet Is Divided Over Just How Divided the Internet Is

It’s back. What first emerged as a viral fad in February 2015 has now returned, except this time it’s bigger than ever before. No, I’m not talking about bubble nails, but rather the rekindled love certain corners of the media have for using the phrase ‘dividing the internet’ to describe any web-based debate, controversy, question, […]

Smart It May Be, but The Internet of Things is Mainly About Making Us Buy More

Originally written June 23, 2016. Since the dawn of capitalism, companies have suffered from a yawning gap in their business models. No matter how refined and rationalized their operating procedures may have been in the past, no matter how excellent and exhaustive their customer service, almost all of them were afflicted by a glaring “blindspot” […]

Have-It-All Consumerism is Fundamentally Antithetical to Democracy

These days, it’s very difficult to surf the web without stumbling upon a commentator decrying the state of politics. From excessive fear-mongering to disenchanted cynicism and deepening polarity, there’s been no shortage of issues for pundits to highlight as they cosily remind us that there’s something fundamentally wrong with 21st-Century political culture. Voters are more […]

Forget Guilds, Uber Recognizes Nothing But Its Business Model

Uber has taken one step towards creating a true sharing economy, or rather two steps back. On Tuesday May 10, it arrived at an agreement with the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, officially recognizing 35,000 Uber drivers in NYC as a guild. This will grant these drivers minimal rights to voice their formerly […]

The History of Pop Teaches Us That Censorship Isn’t Exclusive to China

Not only is swearing a whole lot of fun, but it’s also certifiably good for you and your vocabulary. That’s why it was sad to hear that the Chinese government instructed Iron Maiden not to swear during their April gigs in Shanghai and Beijing. To make matters worse, the heavy-metal legends were also ordered to […]

Brand Authenticity is Oxymoronic When We Want Companies to Sell Us More Than Products

Brands are, almost by definition, inauthentic. Even if actual events, happenings and controversies occasionally influence the reputation of a particular company, this reputation is largely the product of a never-ending stream of advertising and marketing. Through such PR activity, the relevant company effectively filters out the negative connotations surrounding its name and leaves only the […]