…while the scourge of excessive political correctness must be opposed, common sense cuts both ways.
Even a cursory visit to a toy shop shows that toys are not simply organised in a reasonable fashion to appeal to boys and girls. They are so aggressively differentiated that it amounts to a form of gender fascism.
The entire girls’ area will be almost exclusively pink, and almost exclusively concerned with a) looking like a princess-whore and b) looking after a baby and a home. The boys’ section, meanwhile, will include the action toys, the science toys, and all of the miscellaneous toys.
Does “common sense” really dictate that this is right?
This is a relatively new development, driven by the greed of modern toy manufacturers and their desire to increase profits by creating micro-demographics amongst the young. It is part of the relentless commercialisation and sexualisation of childhood, particularly girlhood, which lies at the root of many of society’s concerns.
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It’s only in the Thomson Reuters Business Classification [pdf] that we have a technology sector, and it’s also too broad to capture what we really mean when we talk about “tech companies.” Here, Google is part of the technology sector, but so are long distance telephone companies, wireless carriers, software wholesalers, and payroll handlers. This isn’t intended as a takedown of classification efforts — they’re useful, but only if you understand what goes into them and interpret them with restraint. Tech companies are so hot right now that every company wants to be one.
The PRC government has adopted regulations governing internet access and the distribution of information over the internet. Under these regulations, internet content providers and internet publishers are prohibited from posting or displaying over the internet content that, among other things, impairs the national dignity of China, is reactionary, obscene, superstitious, fraudulent or defamatory, or otherwise violates PRC laws and regulations. Failure to comply with these requirements may result in the revocation of licenses to provide internet content and other licenses and the closure of the concerned websites. The website operator may also be held liable for such censored information displayed on or linked to the website. […] Although we attempt to monitor the content posted by users on our platform, we are not able to effectively control or restrict content (including comments as well as pictures, videos and other multimedia content) generated or placed on our platform by our users. In March 2012, we had to disable the Comment feature on our platform for three days to clean up feeds related to certain rumors. To the extent that PRC regulatory authorities find any content displayed on our platform objectionable, they may require us to limit or eliminate the dissemination of such information on our platform. Failure to do so may subject us to liabilities and penalties and may even result in the temporary blockage or complete shutdown of our online operations.
A key criterion to measure the success of media in transition is whether it can sustain commercial growth while benefiting society. Compared to other enterprises, which make commercial interests the top consideration, media organizations should care more about their responsibility to social and public interests. Traditional media should realize the challenges ahead. Companies should be prepared to face declining demand for print publications, sales and distribution, and adjust their personnel structure accordingly. The transition of mass media into the digital age will lead to significant changes in advertising. Ads in newspapers and magazines will see a dramatic decline, but at the same time the rise of Internet-based news portals will provide more diverse platforms and formats for advertising.