Woman taking photo of pumpkin soup with smartphone

Don’t Buy Into the Authenticity Scam

We choose products and services partially based on how they make us feel, on meanings we derive from our choices.
Starbucks drinks

Why Brands Want To Be Your BFF

Most contemporary consumers consider ourselves too savvy to be taken in by a corporation’s attempts to integrate seamlessly ...
watching tv on couch

Mediated Reality is No Match for Personal Experience

The world represented in the media greatly influences our understanding and beliefs about reality. But our lived experiences might be more important.
Marshmallows

What’s So Bad About Instant Gratification?

The internet is making us impatient. But is that actually such a bad thing? Our tech columnist takes a look.
Still Life

Thanksgiving Is a Feast of Things Forgotten

Thanksgiving is a feast so complex and semiotically dense that things are very often forgotten and rarely go according to plan.
chalkboard

How To Wrap Your Head Around Even The Most Complex Subjects

A 2x2 matrix is a great way of mapping just about any idea, research topic, or set of observations on two dimensions.
Spock and Kirk

Star Trek’s 50th Star Date Anniversary

September 8 marks the 50th anniversary of the first season of Star Trek, the NBC science-fiction series produced by Gene Roddenberry.

What’s A Healthier Choice: A Big Mac or A Chipotle Burrito?

Consumers looking to make a healthier choice need to consider that "fast casual" restaurants aren't always better than fast food.

Why Do Americans Love Tipping?

Tipping as cultural practice: why some countries like the U.S. like tipping and others don't.
Museum of Broken Relationships exhibit

The Museum of Broken Relationships

Located in the historic Upper Town district of Zagreb, Croatia, the Museum of Broken Relationships began as an experiment.