Book Sales – River And Sound Review Thu, 24 Nov 2022 02:30:57 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Book Sales – River And Sound Review 32 32 University of Akron Press Hosts Holiday Book Sale at Bierce Library, Nov. 28 – The Buchtelite Thu, 24 Nov 2022 02:30:57 +0000

The Holiday Book Sale will take place at the Bierce Library on Monday, November 28, 2022, from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m.

Do you like to read or write? Check out the University of Akron Press Vacation Book Sale on Monday, Nov. 28 from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. With a variety of titles available, interested students and staff can select their favorite genres.

“University of Akron Press books, especially collections of poetry, connect student writers with works that represent the eclectic contemporary literary landscape,” said Dr. Mary Biddinger, professor and acting president of the English Department. The Akron series in Poetry Editor also stated that “these books showcase the creativity of writers of diverse sensibilities and backgrounds, and the covers are works of art in themselves”.

Brook Wyers, the Marketing, Outreach and Publishing Services Coordinator, leads holiday book sales and has coordinated past ephemera sales at UA Press.

According to Wyers, titles featured during the holiday book sale include “Free Clean Fill Dirt,” “Pursuing John Brown” and a new release, “Color Capital of the World.”

“We also feature old historic, Akron-centric or sports-centric favorites like ‘Ohio State Football,’ ‘Walks Around Akron,’ and ‘The Rest is History,'” Wyers said.

Wyers also noted that ephemera sales are a good opportunity to talk to customers and share more information about UA Press, as some people may not be aware of academic publishing.

“Students can learn about upcoming pop-up book sales through our various social media platforms…Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and our new LinkedIn page,” Wyers said. “Bierce Library and its social media accounts also work closely with the press to advertise pop-up events, as most pop-up sales take place at Bierce Library.”

You can find press information and future pop-up book sales on the following social media accounts:

Bierce Library:

Facebook – (9) University of Akron Academic Libraries | Akron OH | Facebook

AU Press:

Twitter- U Akron Press (@uakronpress) / Twitter

Facebook – (9) University of Akron Press | Akron OH | Facebook

Instagram – University of Akron Press on Instagram • Photos and videos

LinkedIn – (73) The University of Akron Press: Presentation | LinkedIn

Editor’s Note: Emily Price is currently employed by The University of Akron Press as a student assistant. She also participates in the sale of books.

Simon & Schuster owner will let sale to Penguin fall apart, sources say Mon, 21 Nov 2022 01:56:00 +0000

NEW YORK, Nov 20 (Reuters) – The owner of book publishing powerhouse Simon & Schuster will let its $2.2 billion sale to Penguin Random House collapse on Monday, opening the door for a new suitor to try to strike a deal, according to people familiar with the matter.

The acquisition was blocked on November 1 by a federal judge on antitrust grounds. German media group Bertelsmann SE & Co (BTGGg.F), owner of Penguin, failed to convince Paramount Global (PARA.O), the current owner of Simon & Schuster, to help launch a call and to extend the contract before it expires on Monday. , the sources said.

Bertelsmann will owe Paramount a break fee of $200 million following the failed transaction.

The sources requested anonymity ahead of this week’s official announcements. Paramount declined to comment, while a spokesperson for Bertelsmann did not respond to a request for comment.

The US Department of Justice had filed a lawsuit to stop the merger of the two publishers, which together would have accounted for more than 25% of all printed books sold in the United States this year.

In his complaint, he argued that the deal would lead to lower revenue for authors due to reduced competition. Best-selling author Stephen King testified in favor of the government’s arguments at trial.

Penguin writers include cookbook author Ina Garten and novelists Zadie Smith and Danielle Steele, while Simon & Schuster publishes King, Jennifer Weiner and Hillary Rodham Clinton, among others.

The top five US publishers are Penguin, HarperCollins, Macmillan, Simon & Schuster and Hachette.

Following a failed deal, Paramount will be free to explore a sale of Simon & Schuster again. Previously known as ViacomCBS, Paramount signed the deal with Penguin so it could focus on its video and streaming businesses.

HarperCollins, which is controlled by News Corp (NWSA.O), and Lagardère SCA’s Hachette Book Group (LAGA.PA) have already publicly expressed interest in buying Simon & Schuster.

HarperCollins also unsuccessfully bid on Simon & Schuster when it was listed for sale by Paramount in early 2020.

HarperCollins and Hachette did not respond to requests for comment.

Reporting by Abigail Summerville and Anirban Sen in New York; Editing by Sandra Maler and Muralikumar Anantharaman

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

Newly Discovered Wind in the Willows Illustration Will Be Auctioned | Books Fri, 18 Nov 2022 18:40:00 +0000

An original illustration of The Wind in the Willows, recently discovered hanging in a country house, is to be auctioned.

The pencil and ink drawing is by EH Shepard, who illustrated the Kenneth Grahame and Winnie-the-Pooh classic. Titled Swaggering Down the Steps, it shows Mr. Toad descending the steps of Toad Hall dressed in automobile attire to be greeted by Ratty, Badger and Mole. In the margins are written instructions for the printer.

It has been privately owned since it was acquired by the current owner’s family 69 years ago and was recently found hanging from the stairs of an East Anglian country house. It will be auctioned on December 7 by Cheffins Fine Art Auctioneers in Cambridge and has an estimated value of between £8,000 and £12,000.

Shepard was asked to illustrate The Wind in the Willows in 1931 by Grahame. By then he had already provided designs for Punch magazine and Winnie-the-Pooh. It was the author of the latter, AA Milne, who introduced Grahame and Shepard.

Nicolas Martineau, director of Cheffins, said the cartoon showed Mr Toad ‘full of pomp and excitement over his potential new purchase’, a red car, ‘only to be confronted by his disapproving friends who have come on a mission of mercy to save poor Toad from himself and his automobile addiction.

“As we all know, this scene sadly ends with Toad placed under house arrest by his friends, escaping captivity and stealing a car in which he wreaks havoc as ‘The Terror of the Freeway’ and is then sent to prison for his actions,” Martineau added. “The Wind in the Willows has had several editions since it was first published in 1908, but it’s from Shepard’s wonderful illustrations of the 1930s and beyond that we really connect the characters.”

“Designs like these rarely make it to market, especially after being hidden away for so long,” Martineau said. “During his later years Shepard was to see his designs, especially those for Winnie-the-Pooh books, sell for considerable sums, but of the nearly 100 books he illustrated, the designs for The Wind in the Willows were said to have been Shepard’s favorites.

In 2018, an original map of Winnie-the-Pooh’s Hundred Acre Wood by Shepard sold at auction for £430,000, setting a world record for a book illustration.

Ruby Tui’s Local Connection Drives Boom in Book Sales Tue, 15 Nov 2022 05:00:00 +0000 Hot off the heels of winning the Women’s Rugby World Cup, Ruby Tui’s book Directly took the country by storm.

The former Greymouth woman has become the face of women’s rugby, more in demand than ever after the Black Ferns’ 34-31 victory over England in front of 40,000 people at Eden Park.

The former headmistress of John Paul II High School captured everyone’s hearts with her emotion, antics and competitive nature, along with a confidence rarely seen in international sport.

Tui’s autobiography was released on September 27 and now, on the eve of the World Cup, sales are sweeping the country.

“The book really took off after the Women’s World Cup,” said Greymouth Paper Plus owner Suzanne Kelsell.

“We had sold out before the World Cup and now with demand we have more out of stock. I think it’s popular here because of Ruby’s local connection.”

The Greymouth warehouse is also seeing an increase in book sales and has more out of stock.

“We just received an order and only have three copies left,” said store manager Kimberley McAllister.

“Over the past two weeks there has been an increase in sales and we will be ordering more.”

Westport’s Dennis Bookstore and Stationery is sold out.

“He was popular before the Women’s World Cup and we had constant demand – we’re out of stock,” said owner Heather Dennis.

It is also in high demand at Take Note in Hokitika.

“Sales had been good before the game and we still have a few left and have more on order. I had anticipated that if the Black Ferns won I would need more books,” said owner Robyn Cuff.

The World Cup victory is celebrated at Greymouth Catholic High School where Tui honed her love of sport and writing.

“John Paul is extremely proud of Ruby and everyone on the team,” said his former English teacher, Celia Costelloe.

“She is definitely an inspiration to girls and young women.

“She got into everything – sports, public speaking and even organizing school events. She was, all through high school, a leader. She never let anything go. ‘stop, she’s even a little stubborn. Maybe that’s why she and I got along.”

Ms Costelloe recalled a visit from Tui during her final year of college, when she came to say she had got an A in English.

LAST CALL: IHG Southeast Asia, Korea and Greater China up to 45% off flash sale for stays November 20 – June 30, 2023 (book by November 12) Sat, 12 Nov 2022 02:42:31 +0000

IHG launched its Singles Day (11.11) sale on Thursday for stays at participating hotels in Southeast Asia, South Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Macau between November 20 and June 30. 2023.

The 3-day flash sale on 11.11 is about to end and you must book by midnight local time on November 12.

You can access this offer on the IHG website here.

READ MORE: IHG One Rewards Rates and Bonus Points Offers

There is a two night minimum stay requirement. The Flash Sale rate plan is prepaid, non-cancellable and non-refundable.


Regent Taipei

InterContinental Bali

Regent Phu Quoc

Hong Kong Island Indigo

InterContinental Seoul COEX

Crown Plaza Vientiane


The flash sale ends at midnight local time in those countries, around noon Saturday on the US East Coast.

You have to read the fine print and the overall discount is “up to” 35% off, so the savings at many hotels is likely much less.

Terms and conditions of this offer:

The 3-day Flash Sale promotional rate (the “Promotion”) is valid only for select bookings made from November 10, 2022 through November 12, 2022 (both dates inclusive) (“Booking Dates”) for stays at hotels in IHG brand attendees between November 20, 2022 through June 30, 2023 (both dates inclusive) (“Stay Dates”) using the “3-Day Flash Sale” rate during Reservation Dates.

The promotion offers a discount of up to 35% off the hotel’s Best Flexible Rate (BFR). The BFR tariff is an unrestricted, non-eligible and non-discountable tariff. IHG One Rewards members will also be eligible for an additional 10% discount on reservations made under the Promotion that are made directly through IHG channels. Rates are per room, per night for up to 2 adults sharing a room and are subject to availability during stay dates.

Minimum stay of 2 nights required for reservations in the Promotion. Reservations must be made at least three (3) days prior to your arrival date. Reservations are final and require full prepayment for the entire stay at the time of booking. Payment is non-refundable. No refund in case of cancellation or modification. Once the reservation is confirmed, your credit card will be charged between the time of your reservation and your check-in for the total amount indicated, whether the reservation is used or not. Local government guidelines may require hotels to make operational changes and you will be notified upon check-in.

Promotion is valid in Southeast Asia, South Korea and Greater China (Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan area) at Regent, InterContinental, Vignette Collection, Kimpton, Hotel Indigo, voco, Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn , Holiday Inn Express, Holiday Inn participants. & Suites, Staybridge Suites hotels and resorts. See our website for details of participating hotels.

The promotion cannot be combined with any other offer, reduction or promotion. At the Holiday Inn, children 12 and under stay free in their parents’ room in existing bedding and eat free at the all-day restaurant with a paying adult accompanying them.

Reservations made through IHG brand websites, the IHG app, the CRO or directly at the hotel are eligible for IHG One Rewards points. IHG One Rewards Terms and Conditions apply. Visit for details. IHG reserves the right to remove a member’s points or cancel a member’s account if fraudulent use of the Promotion is detected.

Taxes, service charges and credit card surcharges are not included. All other in-room dining purchases, minibar purchases and private dining are excluded from this offer. The promotion does not apply to group bookings. Unused components have no cash value and are non-refundable. Not applicable with other discount promotions. Rates are subject to availability. Blackout dates (days when offers are not available) may apply at some participating hotels. The final invoice will be denominated in the hotel’s local currency.

IHG reserves the right to withdraw, suspend or modify this Promotion or modify these terms and conditions without notice at any time with or without notice and without liability. To the extent permitted by applicable law, IHG reserves the right of final interpretation of this Promotion.

News Corp misses revenue and profit estimates; maintains ad growth Tue, 08 Nov 2022 22:35:00 +0000

Nov 8 (Reuters) – News Corp (NWSA.O) on Tuesday reported first-quarter revenue and profit below Wall Street estimates, even as it posted growth in advertising and media sales. subscription.

Shares of the company fell 2.5% in aftermarket trading.

Total revenue fell 1% to $2.48 billion in the quarter ended Sept. 30, while analysts had expected $2.50 billion, according to Refinitiv data. Excluding currency effects, sales increased by 3%.

News Corp said currency loss and lower book sales following the reconfiguration of its inventory and warehouse by Inc (AMZN.O) weighed on revenue, even as that inflationary pressure was driving up costs.

The media conglomerate’s business was boosted by growth at its Dow Jones unit, which derives its revenue primarily from subscription sales, offsetting a weak advertising market that has plagued media and internet businesses across the board.

Revenue for the Dow Jones unit rose 16% to $515 million in the quarter under review, while all other units saw lower revenue.

Overall advertising revenue reached $406 million, an increase of $1 million from a year ago.

Net income, however, fell 75% to $66 million. On an adjusted basis, News Corp reported earnings per share of 12 cents, missing analysts’ estimate of 15 cents.

News Corp grew revenue 11% and profit 95% in the 2022 fiscal year ending June.

Reporting by Yuvraj Malik in Bangalore; Editing by Shailesh Kuber

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

Black Adam Editors Reveal When They Received Henry Cavill’s Superman Scene (Exclusive) Fri, 04 Nov 2022 21:03:00 +0000

The Man in Black has finally arrived in the DC Universe. black adam opened last month to much fanfare, as frontman Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and company led a global press tour that included stops in New York, Toronto, London, Madrid and Mexico City. It culminated what Johnson billed as a 14-year journey, as he was initially tied to Teth-Adam in 2008. With over a decade of ideas in the black adam writers room, scribes Adan Sztykiel, Rory Haines, and Sohrab Noshirvani were tasked with confining these concepts to a single script, director Jaume Collet-Serra was tasked with bringing it to life, and editors Mike Sale, ACE, and John Lee been entrusted to reduce the footage to 125 minutes.

Speaking to’s Liam Crowley, Sale pointed out that balancing Teth-Adam and the Justice Society was his biggest challenge.

“You could have an entire movie for each of these characters. The comic book mythology runs deep for all of these characters,” Sale said. “What it becomes is what to include and what not to include. How much character development can you do in a movie? How much detail about anything can you do It was a challenge to figure out how to make a fun movie, a movie that starts this world, starts these characters, makes people want more, but it’s not just a horribly confusing mess with too many information.”

Lee added that the black adam the production had no shortage of available knowledge, which helped to speed up the introduction process.

“The art department actually dove deep into the whole Black Adam story since 1945 and made a dossier on everything. There was one on Hawkman, one on Cyclone, one on everyone,” Lee added. “It was there for everyone, for the writers and for us. But there comes a point where they shoot what they shoot and we cut that. Some things get left out because, like Mike says, you can’t fit it all in.”

This meant that many scenes ended up on the cutting room floor, including a moment between Atom Smasher and Cyclone.

“Without going into too much detail, there was a scene with Atom Smasher and Cyclone, and it was really there to hint at that storyline in the graphic novels, where Atom Smasher ends up teaming up with Black Adam in an arc. particular story,” Lee revealed. “It didn’t quite fit, but it was a great scene.”

“And we felt like in this movie, we had that rhythm,” Sale added. “Where Smasher talks to Black Adam near the end of the movie.”

One scene that came well into the editing process was the return of Henry Cavill’s Superman in the end credits. Both Sale and Lee were tasked with mounting Kal-El’s confrontation with Teth-Adam, which they didn’t find out until they pressed the play of the mysterious footage.

“It happened very, very late,” Sale said. “We didn’t even know they were shooting it. All of a sudden it appeared one day.”

“I know they shot Henry in London, so we were walking around saying, ‘Hey, what are they shooting in London? And then this sequence pops up and we’re like, ‘Oh, okay,'” Lee added. “The code of silence for everyone. We all agreed. The producers were very involved, and I think we understood that. We tested it and everyone exploded. They went crazy when they saw it.”

Editing this post-credits scene was a loophole moment for Sale in particular, as the Man of Steel has been tied to his film career since the early stages.

“In 1978, I was a kid in Acton, Massachusetts, cleaning up a movie theater. I loved movies, so I worked at the movie theater. One of the movies that was playing there that year there was Superman with Christopher Reeves,” Sale recalled. “I’ve watched this movie many, many times. I love this movie. This movie means something to me. It’s special to me.

“I could tell you that cleaning up some popcorn after a morning of Superman with John Williams’ score while you’re sweeping up the popcorn is pretty fun. The day that footage came up and I was sitting in my bathroom editing and I was like, ‘Oh my God, I’m working on a movie that might have Superman in it.’ I was just sitting there and it was just a moving moment. I was just like, ‘I hope it will happen.'”

Not only did that Superman cameo happen, but it looks like it’s just the beginning for Cavill’s Clark Kent. The British actor recently teased that the black adam the appearance is just a “very small taste of what’s to come”. Beyond that, Cavill’s recent departure from Netflix the witcher also led to speculation that his schedule could fill up with Superman-related projects.

black adam now playing in theaters.

MG Motor Responds to MCA’s Allegation of Irregularities in Oldtimer’s Books Wed, 02 Nov 2022 09:29:42 +0000

MG7 (for representation purposes)

The MCA, through its Registrar of Companies (RoC), summoned the company’s directors and its Deloitte auditors to explain the alleged audit deficiencies that were uncovered during the investigation, the Economic Times reported.
“MG Motor India is a professionally managed, law-abiding company that adheres to the highest standards of compliance and governance and is committed to transparency. We are cooperating fully with government authorities on all matters and are in the process of providing the desired records and information to the Registrar of Companies within the stipulated time frame,” replied the press release from MG Motors India.
Next MG Hector teased
Next MG Hector teased

“It is impossible for an automobile company to be profitable in the first year of its activities. This is due to the huge Capex investment required and the long gestation period in a highly competitive market like India where many multinationals have struggled for decades and racked up losses,” the press release reads.

“We are a global multinational and our books are kept in accordance with Indian accounting standards and audited by reputable auditing firms,” ​​he added.

Meanwhile, MG Motors also reported recording 53% growth in October 2022. The strong sales figure was driven by the Hector SUV which recorded sales figures of 5,008 units.

MG said it has managed to increase production at its plant due to improved supply of semiconductors. The company expects further improvement in the coming weeks.

Besides the Hector, the recently updated MG ZS EV has also seen tremendous sales growth with 784 units sold in October 2022.
When McKinsey Comes to Town Review: The Must-See Book on Opioids, China, and More | Books Sat, 29 Oct 2022 06:00:00 +0000

McKinsey & Co is the biggest name in the consulting industry. Founded in 1926, it employs 30,000 people, has offices in more than 130 locations and counts Pete Buttigieg, the US Secretary of Transportation, among its alumni. From vaping to nonprofits, insurance to energy, government work to healthcare, the McKinsey footprint is here.

Traditionally, McKinsey had the luxury of distance, sideways watching clients bear the brunt of scrutiny, lawsuits and risk. But the space between the field and the bleachers has shrunk. McKinsey finds himself under the microscope.

When McKinsey Comes to Town is a very informed, fascinating read. The authors, New York Times investigative reporters Walt Bogdanich and Michael Forsythe, did their homework. They name names, connect dots and dig up documents. Sources speak in Technicolor.

Bogdanich is a three-time Pulitzer winner. Forsythe takes a careful look at the intersection of money, politics and China. He was previously based in Hong Kong. McKinsey happens to have worked for both the US Department of Defense and Chinese state-owned companies that have helped bolster Beijing’s military.

McKinsey says Bogdanich and Forsythe “fundamentally distort our business and our work.” He issued a similar statement when the Times and ProPublica highlighted his attributions on behalf of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and U.S. Customs and Border Protection. ProPublica said, “McKinsey called our story about his ICE contract fake. It’s not.” The contract with Ice was worth $18 million.

McKinsey has advised over 40 US agencies. He played an outsized role in Jared Kushner’s attempts to deal with Covid, hailing from China. At the same time, it maintained a presence in China. The apparent conflict of interest has caused concern in Congress. Group of Republicans says McKinsey’s work ‘on behalf of Chinese companies…equates to working on behalf of the CCP’ [Chinese Communist Party] and could lead to direct or indirect support for the CCP’s armed wing, the People’s Liberation Army”.

Amid rising tensions between Washington and Beijing, McKinsey’s relationships, contracts and loyalties are likely to continue to draw attention.

The firm remains in the news. In February 2021, McKinsey reached nearly $600 million in legal settlements with state attorneys general. Why? The platinum-plated powerhouse reportedly helped Perdue Pharma “turbocharge” opioid sales. The plaintiffs alleged that “McKinsey sold its ideas to…Purdue Pharma…from 2004 to 2019, including before and after Purdue’s 2007 guilty plea for poor brand image. »

McKinsey also counts the United States Food and Drug Administration among its clients. But this is only the beginning. To quote members of Congress, on at least four occasions the company may “have passed on nonpublic information based on its relationship with the FDA or discussed its willingness to do so” with Purdue Pharma.

Bogdanich asks, “What does it mean when you have an opioid manufacturer offering opioids in the middle of an epidemic?”

Since 1999, opioid-related deaths have increased more than fivefold. In two decades, opioids have killed more than 450,000 people in the United States. Life expectancy is down and it’s not just because of Covid. Death by despair rises.

In 2020, McKinsey apologized for its involvement with Purdue Pharma, “recogniz[ing] that we had not sufficiently acknowledged the epidemic unfolding in our communities or the terrible impact of opioid abuse.”

McKinsey also counted among its clients Juul Labs – the vaping company and bane of teachers, moms and dads – charging it between $15 million and $17 million. His most important work for Juul was responding to an FDA crackdown on youth vaping.

Childhood addiction can be profitable – until it’s not. In September, Juul and more than 30 state attorneys general reached a $438.5 million settlement. The electronic cigarette manufacturer has not admitted his guilt. McKinsey was not involved in the settlement. Juul is on the verge of bankruptcy.

Bogdanich and Forsythe focus on another “long-standing” McKinsey policy – simultaneously serving competing clients with “competing interests” as well as “counterparties in merger, acquisition and alliance opportunities.” Clearly, McKinsey can end up on both sides of deals.

Self-monitoring works – until it doesn’t. Unlike the constraints that govern lawyers, the rules for consultants, if any, are porous and less rigid. Last month, South African prosecutors indicted McKinsey on unspecified charges related to the alleged looting of Transnet, the state-owned rail freight monopoly.

“We believe the charges against our office in South Africa are without merit and we will defend ourselves against them,” a McKinsey spokesperson replied.

Regardless of the outcome of the case, McKinsey’s experience in South Africa stands as a study of the perils posed when governments offload governmental functions onto non-state actors.

McKinsey will face intense scrutiny. Again, it is unclear whether work like that of Bogdanich and Forsythe can or will lead to change. McKinsey’s services remain in demand. Passionate college and trade school students line up to try to snag the brass ring.

Speaking to Bogdanich and Forsythe, a former McKinsey consultant put the scope of the business into perspective. Forget the secret cabals, “the illuminati, the lizards or the globalists,” he said. Instead, “there’s… McKinsey.”

Review of “Survival of the Richest: Escape Fantasies of the Tech Billionaires”, by Douglas Rushkoff Wed, 26 Oct 2022 11:33:53 +0000


Douglas Rushkoff’s new book, “Survival of the Richest: Escape Fantasies of the Tech Billionaires,” opens with a surreal scene: For a sum equal to a third of his annual salary as a professor, Rushkoff flies to a luxury resort to advise five ultra-rich men on how to survive the collapse of civilization . The anonymous men discuss such pressing issues as how to maintain authority over their private security forces after “the event”, and they brainstorm solutions. Maybe the guards could wear some sort of disciplinary collar? Better yet, what about using robots as guards?

It is a dark and revealing episode. More terrifying than the nightmares of Hollywood-derived men is their naive and deeply antisocial response: they would rather optimize their bunkers than work to avert the apocalypse. Rushkoff describes their attitude as a “faith-based certainty in Silicon Valley that they can develop technology that will somehow break the laws of physics, economics, and morality for their offer something even better than a means to save the world: a means of escape from the apocalypse of their own making.

While few can afford to indulge dystopian fantasies so liberally, men are an extreme example of a larger trend. Bunker sales in America are skyrocketing and the market now caters to a range of income levels, from $40,000 starter bunkers to a nearly $10 million deluxe series “Aristocrat” which offers a swimming pool and a bowling alley. Many people now seem obsessed with storing enough money to protect themselves from the rest of the world, rather than considering the kind of world they are creating by earning money in this way.

Read more Book World reviews

Rushkoff, a professor of media theory and digital economics at the City University of New York, who consults and lectures on media and technology, calls this dynamic the “isolation equation.” Anyone who asks any version of the question – can I make enough money doing X to insulate myself from the effects of doing X – is considering the isolation equation. Think of Jeff Bezos launching into space with the money earned from a business model widely condemned for its treatment of low-wage workers and its environmental impact. (Bezos owns The Washington Post.) Think of the cryptocurrency traders who can afford to live in relatively pristine environments by peddling speculative and volatile financial products that generate vast amounts of air pollution.

The isolation equation is a provocative and illuminating concept, and Rushkoff devotes much of the book to tracing the manifestations and origins of a mindset that seduces people into believing they can isolate themselves. of the damage they contribute to creating. As a maker of large-scale illusions – like the myth that by effortless swipes all one’s desires can be fulfilled without harm to other humans or the environment – Silicon Valley is a major target of his criticism. So is the relentless financialization of new technologies through venture capital, which has helped transform the open source, democratic, and collective ethos of many early technologists into a contemporary technological landscape of monopolies based on the theft of data and a cleverly designed dependency.

One of the scariest examples he cites concerns the production of cell phones. At the end of the assembly process, workers wipe down each device with a toxic solvent to remove their own fingerprints. The chemical causes miscarriages, cancers and shortened lifespans, but it fuels the illusion that the phones are created by frictionless magic, not by workers in appalling conditions. Rushkoff sees this as an example of a more widespread phenomenon: “Some of Amazon’s smartest innovations exist entirely to shield Prime members from the reality of working for the company,” he writes.

Rushkoff provides a powerful critique of the attitudes and technologies that enable these deceptions. His arguments about their ultimate origins and his suggestions on how to improve our economy and our future are not convincing, however.

The problem begins with a confused and simplistic attack on empirical science and quantification. Attempting to recast the terms ‘Western’ and ’empirical’ as insults, he rails against a ‘Western, empirical approach to science that breaks everything down into parts rather than emphasizing the connections and interactions between all these things “. It is a caricatural portrait; many ecologists, biologists and other scientists study the interactions within and between complex systems. It’s a shame that the book leans into such thoughtless broadsides.

It is also difficult to take seriously his assertion that “because Western language systems…tend to be more noun-based than many of their counterparts…our language has enabled certain forms of industrialism and capitalism, among many other systems (like slavery and domination) that rely on objectification and categories. Perhaps asking for evidence of this claim or a way to rule out or rule out other explanations for these phenomena is manifesting the very empiricism it opposes. But such exemption from the standards of proof and falsification puts the claim on the same epistemic level as astrology or climate skepticism.

Siddhartha Mukherjee considers the cell and the future of humans

The central problem is a confusion between science and its use. Scientific methods are not bad because they help some people locate oil deposits or good because they help others treat brain tumors; they allow both good and bad deeds. The methods themselves should not be condemned because of the way they are sometimes used. The right answer is to refrain from immoral uses of science, not to condemn it.

Rushkoff’s proposed solutions, repeated in a quick paragraph near the end of the book, focus on lower consumption and the regulation and taxation of industries. These are good ideas although familiar, but they cannot be implemented well without thorough empirical study. How much less do we need to consume, and in which sectors of the economy, and over what period of time? What is the comparative effectiveness of the various potential regulations and what are the most promising green technologies?

These kinds of questions should not be answered by scientists alone; they also have moral and political dimensions. But it is impossible to answer without a thorough scientific analysis. Science is necessary to create a livable future. It’s just not enough.

Nick Romeo is an Athens-based critic and journalist. Her new book, which explores the people and ideas that build a fair economy, will be published in 2023.

Escape the fantasies of tech billionaires