Wednesday, November 9, 2011

The Light Bulb Conspiracy

Long time ago, products were made to last but in the 1920s some businessmen thought that a product that refuses to wear out is 'a tragedy of business' (1928). This is how 'Planned Obsolescence' was born. Shortly after, the first worldwide cartel was set up expressly to reduce the life span of the incandescent light bulb, a symbol for innovation and bright new ideas, and the first official victim of Planned Obsolescence. During the 1950s, with the birth of the consumer society, the concept took on a whole new meaning, as explained by flamboyant designer Brooks Stevens: 'Planned Obsolescence, the desire to own something a little newer, a little better, a little sooner than is necessary...'. The growth society flourished, everybody had everything, the waste was piling up (preferably far away in illegal dumps in the Third World) - until consumers started rebelling. This documentary film was written by Cosima Dannoritzer.

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