“Sustainable,” implies “able to continue over a period of time,” according to the Cambridge Dictionary. “Fashion,” on the other hand, implies change over time. To reconcile the two is impossible. No wonder striving for net-zero emissions makes us all feel like Don Quixote, tilting at windmills.
Because there is no simple answer to solving fashion’s role in climate change. Even the obvious one — don’t make, or buy, any new stuff, and don’t throw away any old stuff — has negative implications for employment, know-how and self-definition. (After all, people have been adorning themselves to express themselves for pretty much as long as they have understood themselves as “selves.”) The crucial issue for each of us, no matter which side of the equation we are on, is thinking about and understanding the effects of the choices we make, so we can make better ones in the future.
An growing number of Chinese influencers have had it with the distorted, filtered images coming at them from every pixel on their super-app screen. From WeChat to Douyin and Weibo, they refuse to conform to social media’s perception of the perfect body.
Safety through technology is certainly not a bad thing. But the need for safety can become pathological. Friedrich Nietzsche’s basic premise is that failure is an option. It is woven tightly into a life worth living. It is time for a personal inventory: Which of our devices and practices enable a life that experiences the world in ways and places not always engineered for our comfort?
Ai is right to compare Twitter to the weather. Although tweets are written in words, Twitter is also shaped by constantly flowing nonverbal currents. Algorithms determine who sees tweets and how fast and far they propagate; a system of likes, follows, and retweets structures our responses to what others say; millions of bots chatter into the ether and follow accounts, gaming the system and shaping our discourse.
A 2020 survey by Vogue Business found that more than half of its Gen Z participants bought most of their clothes from fast-fashion brands, like H&M, Gap, Zara and Forever 21. Market research firm Mintel has reported that Gen Z, generally seen as those born between 1997 and 2010, also buys more clothes than older generations, with the average Gen-Zer owning hundreds of dollars worth of outfits that never get worn at all. It’s a trend that analysts say is fueled by a social media culture that pressures youth and young adults to never wear the same outfit twice, as well as an industry that has made impulse buying and returning items far easier.
The ability to examine lots of human bodies as they go about their daily lives is also changing how clinical studies of new drugs are done. According to iqvia, a research firm, 10% of late-stage clinical trials in 2020 used connected devices to monitor people, up from 3% in 2016. A catalogue by the Digital Medicine Society, an American organisation, lists more than 300 examples of digital biomarkers that are used in trials.
Twitter has about 229 million monetizable daily active users, the vast majority of whom live outside of the United States. Twitter said that its first quarter growth and increased usage was largely “due to the war in Ukraine as people turned to Twitter to organize, share news, find sources of support and stay connected.” In an attention economy, much of our value as consumers is measured by the time we spend on the site — liking memes, signal boosting information, clicking on links. During times of crisis and fast-moving world events, it’s an invaluable resource.
The past several decades have seen the introduction of a number of disruptive technologies into warfare, including some whose effects are so extensive that they can be considered their own domains, such as cyber– and cognitive warfare. Meanwhile, new technologies continue to emerge, ones which, as a recent article in NATO Review notes, “are already beginning to turn speculative fiction into reality.”
Mr. Kondo is one of thousands of people in Japan who have entered into unofficial marriages with fictional characters in recent decades, served by a vast industry aimed at satisfying the every whim of a fervent fan culture. Tens of thousands more around the globe have joined online groups where they discuss their commitment to characters from anime, manga and video games.