An interesting and nuanced piece from Chris Tackett at the Atlantic on how sites like Pinterest and Svpply might be reducing consumption, and which cites a Megan Garber article that prompted my recent post on lifehacking-through-Instapaper:
I don’t disagree some forms of conspicuous consumption are fading, but in the context of how we present ourselves online, I think we’ve entered a new era of hyper-conspicuous digital consumption. While the poor economy may be reducing our urge to buy an expensive car just to show we can, the new additions to our ever-growing arsenal of social-media tools are giving us new ways to show the world what kind of things we like, what clothing or jewelry we would wear (if we could), what kind of cars we would drive (if we could), what kind of homes we’d live in (if we could) and on and on. If there wasn’t a social element to Svpply or Pinterest (or Twitter or Facebook or blogs, for that matter) I think far fewer people would take the time to use these tools for personal organization. It is the overtly conspicuous nature of sharing the pretty things we find that makes these tools fun to use in the first place.
‘with sharing both intentional and “frictionless” — we can define ourselves not just by what we read, but by how we read.’ – Nieman Lab
‘We are seeing the twilight of conspicuous leisure, and of conspicuous waste and conspicuous consumption as well.’ – Rick Bookstaber