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The Persuaders

The Persuaders
FRONTLINE takes an in-depth look at the multibillion-dollar "persuasion industries" of advertising and public relations and how marketers have developed new ways of integrating their messages deeper into the fabric of our lives. Through sophisticated market research methods to better understand consumers and by turning to the little-understood techniques of public relations to make sure their messages come from sources we trust, marketers are crafting messages that resonate with an increasingly cynical public. In this documentary essay, correspondent Douglas Rushkoff (correspondent for FRONTLINE's "The Merchants of Cool") also explores how the culture of marketing has come to shape the way Americans understand the world and themselves and how the techniques of the persuasion industries have migrated to politics, shaping the way our leaders formulate policy, influence public opinion, make decisions, and stay in power. Related:  our fundamental notions & understandingmoney, values, & behaviorContent

Harvard Education Letter History teacher Rachel Otty often assigns group work in her classroom to keep her teens engaged. Volume 26, Number 3May/June 2010 The neuroscience behind collaborative work By NANCY WALSER Unleashing the “Brain Power” of Groups in the Classroom, continued Unleashing the “Brain Power” of Groups in the Classroom: The neuroscience behind collaborative work Unleashing the “Brain Power” of Groups in the Classroom In a warm, stuffy room on the third floor of Cambridge (Mass.) Taking direction from a slide projected onto the blackboard, they break up into assigned groups of three to read charges against men leveled by 19th-century feminists in the 1848 Declaration of Sentiments, and compare them with statistics on the status of men and women in the U.S. today. After students return to their seats, their teacher, Rachel Otty, announces that next week the class will be divided into groups to prepare for a debate on whether or not President Andrew Jackson should have been impeached. Print J. E.G. ———.

Can There Be “Good” Corporations? by Marjorie Kelly When companies are owned by workers and the community—instead of Wall Street financiers—everything changes. posted Apr 16, 2012 George Siemon calls himself Organic Valley’s “C-E-I-E-I-O.” Photo courtesy of Organic Valley. Our economic system is profoundly broken. There is another approach. First, we haven’t acknowledged what unites them. Ownership unites them. The alternatives emerging in our time represent an unsung ownership revolution. Here we confront the second consideration—the need for a name. Employees in this firm are not a countervailing power. Options like worker ownership and cooperatives not only spread wealth but ensure that owners are local, hence more likely to care about local ecological impacts. In writing the book, Owning Our Future: The Emerging Ownership Revolution, I’ve been traveling around and visiting places where this new economy is bubbling up. Founded on Fairness Consider, for example, the John Lewis Partnership (JLP) in England. “Very much so,” he said. 1.

Mind Over Money Mind Over Money PBS Airdate: April 27, 2010 NARRATOR: Does raw human emotion dictate your financial decisions, or are we rational calculators of our own self-interest? It's a bitter scientific debate that has real-world consequences. The crash of 2008 nearly collapses the global economy. Experiments show our behavior is bizarre when it comes to money, but not everyone agrees. ZACH BURNS (University of Chicago): Okay, who's ready? NARRATOR: It's an unusual experiment that challenges all our ideas about money:... ZACH BURNS: Who wants to bid? NARRATOR: ...an auction of a twenty dollar bill. BIDDER ONE: One dollar. ZACH BURNS: Do I hear two dollars? BIDDER TWO: Two dollars. ZACH BURNS: Do I hear three? You want five? BIDDER THREE: Five. ZACH BURNS: Six? BIDDER FOUR: Six. ZACH BURNS: Seven? BIDDER FIVE: Seven. NARRATOR: The rules are simple. BIDDER SIX: Ten. ZACH BURNS: Eleven? BIDDER FIVE: Thirteen. NARRATOR: But there's a catch. ZACH BURNS: Thirteen. ZACH BURNS: Do I hear 20? BIDDER SEVEN: Twenty. Ooh!

80 Extreme Advertisements That Will Challenge Your Mind Inspiration An advertisement’s aim is to instantly attract the attention of viewers. Some use humour to draw viewers’ attention, but there are other kinds of advertisements that go to extremes to present something different. As a follow up to our previous article 60 Humorous Advertisements That Will Tickle Your Bones, today we look at the opposite extreme to using humour in advertisements. Presenting another side to design, some of the advertisements shared in this article today may be a little visually disturbing or conceptually controversial. Warning: Viewers Discretion Is Advised! Image from: Squid 80 Controversial and Disturbing Print Ads Let’s look at these advertisements objectively with an open and analytical mind and appreciate the creativity that went into it. Here are 80 controversial advertisements that challenge the boundaries of what is socially and morally acceptable with the use of dark humour and shock tactics. Just liquid hand wash: Cockroaches Ariel: Pervert Alac: Kitchen

Slide Show: Obama on The New Yorker's Cover In the past four years, the covers that feature President Obama, his family, and his political foes have taken many forms. Here’s a look back at how our cover artists have depicted the President since 2008. “Eustace Tillarobama,” by Ria Irvin and Seth. February 11 & 18, 2008. “I’ll Get It! “Herding Cats,” by Barry Blitt. Advertisement Sign up for email newsletters Language Arts/English Products Copyright: 2009 Publisher: Allyn & Bacon Grade: K - 8 Author: Jennifer A. Fontenot, Karen J. Carney Today’s writing courses and workshops place an increasing emphasis on helping K-8 teachers instruct students so they can demonstrate content power in their compositions. Blueprint for Exceptional Writing (BEW) provides a master plan to help build successful writers and gives teachers a comprehensive set of strategies to improve student writing.

Wealth Inequality Sep 30 Wealth Inequality in America Perform the following thought experiment. Remove yourself for a moment from your present socioeconomic circumstances and imagine that you are to be replaced randomly into society at any class level. Now, before you know your particular place in society you are told that it is within your powers to redistribute the wealth of that society in any way that you choose. Here is what we found: As you can see from the figure, participants rather badly estimated the current state of wealth disparity! What this tells me is that Americans don’t understand the extent of disparity in the US, and that they (we) desire a more equitable society. Maybe this suggests that when there are no labels, and we think about the core of our morality in abstract terms (and under the veil of ignorance), we are actually very similar?

Secret Fears of the Super-Rich - Graeme Wood The October 2008 issue of SuperYacht World confirmed it: money cannot buy happiness. Page 38 of “the international magazine for superyachts of distinction”—if you have to ask what it takes for a yacht to qualify as “super,” you can’t afford to be in the showroom—presented the Martha Ann, a 230-foot, $125 million boat boasting a crew of 20, a master bedroom the size of my house, and an interior gaudy enough to make Saddam Hussein blush. The feature story on the Martha Ann was published just as the S&P 500 suffered its worst week since 1933, shedding $1.4 trillion over the course of the week, or about 2,240 Martha Anns every day. Still, one of the captions accompanying the lavish photos betrayed the status anxiety that afflicts even the highest echelons of wealth. The lesson that Mammon is a false or inadequate god goes back a long way, and a glossy spread in SuperYacht World is just one place to relearn it. Such complaints sound, on their face, preposterous.

Design & Thinking - a documentary on design thinking The Whitewashing of the American Farmer: Dodge Ram Super Bowl Ad Edition - Alexis C. Madrigal Maybe God did make farmers, but why'd Dodge only show us the white ones? Dodge Ram turned heads with its high-production value remake of a Farms.com YouTube video, featuring conservative radio broadcaster Paul Harvey's voice laid over beautiful photographs of Americans farmers. The arresting images combined with the crackle of what everyone immediately recognizes as old audio made everyone at our Super Bowl party stop and watch. Dodge, I'm sure, had good demographic analysis of their audience, so they knew they could go godly with the message and encounter little backlash. But there's a problem. Stipulating that visual inspection is a rough measure for the complex genealogical histories of people, I decided to count the race and ethnicity of the people in Dodge's ad. I couldn't help but wonder: Where are all the campesinos? It's true that whites are the managers of 96 percent of the nation's farms, according to the USDA's 2007 Census of Agriculture.

What Is PICAXE? - What is PICAXE What Is PICAXE? A PICAXE microcontroller is designed to be the brain of your electronic project. Originally designed as an educational system for schools, the PICAXE system has now also been widely adopted by hundreds of thousands of 'hobbyists' due to its ease of use. Each year thousands of high school students are also introduced to electronics and microcontrollers via building a PICAXE project. PICAXE chips are popular because they are very low-cost, and simple to program using free, easy-to-learn software. The PICAXE chip can react to input sensors and switch outputs on and off accordingly. The various different PICAXE chip sizes (8, 14, 18, 20, 28 and 40 pins) give great flexibility on how the system can be used - simply select the chip size as required for your project. Programming Software PICAXE chips can be programmed in a very simple to learn BASIC language or via graphical blocks or flowcharts. PICAXE Microcontrollers Next > Getting Started with the PICAXE system.

Economy and psychology The podcasts and blogs below are produced by professionals with extensive experience working in their respective fields as a psychotherapist and an economist. Here they combine what they have learned to explore how the twin crises of the US economy and our psychology interact today. Isolation, anxiety, loneliness, and depression are psychological issues that profoundly impact work, consumption, and debt. Likewise, unemployment, income inequality, and exploitation shape our emotional and intimate lives. The interaction of economy and psychology helps to determine our society and our individuality as well. Yet these topics remain loaded with taboos, confusions, ignorance, and fear preventing us from asking big questions and daring to discuss big answers. Podcasts Meanings of the Election Results Monday, December 3, 2012 Everyone from the candidates to the parties to observers and voters are making their respective senses of what the election results mean. The Decline of Traditional Families

Alain de Botton: Imagining Advertisements for Things We Really Need | Think Tank What's the Big Idea? You don't need this product. But I want you to buy it. So I am going to confuse you. But what if advertising could be used for things that we really do need? Watch the video here: What's the Significance? Is it at all practical to imagine an "ethical advertising agency," as Botton proposes, that would be used to create "beautiful presentations of the most important ideas around." The real difficulty with the ideas which underlie virtues like love or compassion is not that they seem surprising or peculiar, but rather that they seem far too obvious: their very reasonableness and universality strip them of their power. Botton's ad agency would each year promote 6 virtues, selected through an online poll. Image courtesy of Shutterstock

"FRONTLINE takes an in-depth look at the multibillion-dollar "persuasion industries" of advertising and public relations and how marketers have developed new ways of integrating their messages deeper into the fabric of our lives." by jerrybuchko Oct 27

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