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Links 1 through 5 of 5 by Latoya Peterson tagged commerce

"This loofah isn’t just commercialism taken to an illogical extreme, as it has been understood on DCentric. It is a deliberately irreverent product, the reverse of this exfoliating glove proclaims ‘I have a clean…’. If you were looking to cash in on Martin Luther King’s image you’d pick something in keeping with the way he is understood. This item’s selling point is its humour, its play on words, its ability to be flippant about a popularly respected figure. I don’t find it offensive, but then I am a reluctant fan of puns. However, I can’t think of a single person who would buy it. Caricatures of human beings?  Maybe. The kind of people who populate their homes with joke accessories like money toilet paper? Perhaps. Finance guys who live in 80s style loft conversions and own more stainless steel stress toys than books? If they still exist and want to give a jaded giggle to their guests, possibly. Culturally astute, hyper clean racists? Probably. Honest to goodness actual people? No."

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"It's Christmas in New York City and the temperature is a blistering 120 degrees. Climate change has warmed the planet to the point where midday curfews keep people out of the oppressive heat. Scientists have devised a way to extract and inject melanin, making skin pigment a commodity.
"This is the future world envisioned by director A. Sayeeda Clarke in her short film, White, part of ITVS's Futurestates series.
"'White' explores a future where society's racial stratification is heightened by a need for melanin."

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“'I call these things ‘White Guy in a Tie’ events,” a Canadian friend of a friend named Jake told me during the recruitment pitch he gave me in Beijing, where I live. 'Basically, you put on a suit, shake some hands, and make some money. We’ll be in ‘quality control,’ but nobody’s gonna be doing any quality control. You in?'

"I was.

"And so I became a fake businessman in China, an often lucrative gig for underworked expatriates here. One friend, an American who works in film, was paid to represent a Canadian company and give a speech espousing a low-carbon future. Another was flown to Shanghai to act as a seasonal-gifts buyer. Recruiting fake businessmen is one way to create the image—particularly, the image of connection—that Chinese companies crave. My Chinese-language tutor, at first aghast about how much we were getting paid, put it this way: 'Having foreigners in nice suits gives the company face.'"

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"The incident was the latest in a series of problems the retailer has had in its dealings with minorities and women.
"There have been several past instances of black customers claiming they were treated unfairly at Walmart stores, and the company faced lawsuits alleging that women were passed over in favor of men for pay raises and promotions."

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"The Dai park, with its wooden stilt homes, groomed palm trees and elephant statues, is part of an increasingly popular form of entertainment in China — the ethnic theme playground, where middle-class Han come to experience what they consider the most exotic elements of their vast nation. There is no comprehensive count of these Disneyland-like parks, but people in the industry say the number is growing, as are visitors. The Dai park, whose grounds encompass 333 actual Dai households, attracts a half-million tourists a year paying $15 each.

The parks are money-making ventures. But scholars say they also serve a political purpose — to reinforce the idea that the Chinese nation encompasses 55 fixed ethnic minorities and their territories, all ruled by the Han."

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