Episode 334
December 22, 2023

Memory Morphing: How Media Reshapes Recall and Taints Nostalgia

Did you miss MUSES? Tune in for a mini recap at the beginning of the episode. Stick around as Phillip and Brian dive into the intriguing world of how digital media influences and sometimes distorts our memories and perceptions, particularly in the context of business and cultural trends.

<iframe height="52px" width="100%" frameborder="no" scrolling="no" seamless src="https://player.simplecast.com/3e8911dd-9995-45a9-87cf-bce550b28682?dark=false"></iframe>

Did you miss MUSES? Tune in for a mini recap at the beginning of the episode. Stick around as Phillip and Brian dive into the intriguing world of how digital media influences and sometimes distorts our memories and perceptions, particularly in the context of business and cultural trends.

Ripples in a Stream

  • {00:08:20} - “We had Chloe Ryan, who's the CEO of Acrylic Robots, sit on the panel, and her perspective is this is a new technology that allows for reproduction, not mass reproduction, but reproduction for digital artists to actually sell web to print, direct to consumer, print on demand paintings of the first of its kind and sort of launching a marketplace, which is a commerce-centered marketplace.” - Phillip
  • {00:21:34} - “Brands no longer are in full control of their own story and their own destiny and customers now have the tools en masse to be creative and to contribute to the lore and the story and world-building that is going to be required to build brands in the future.” - Phillip
  • {00:29:50} - “We sort of build on top of whatever takes hold at the moment. And so these worlds that are being built now, if you're a world builder now, who knows how adopted that might be in decades to come. We don't know what kind of foundation we're laying and what will end up becoming the foundation for a lot, lot, lot, lot more.” - Brian
  • {00:33:35} - “What's so fascinating about something like Gag City where it used to be just fan fiction, the Gag City background could be a setting for many stories in the future, and that could elevate the next level of creators to a really well-realized universe where almost anything can happen.” - Phillip
  • {00:43:52} - “The reason Future Commerce feels different is because we're making content for ourselves first and for an audience, not even second or third. I think we're doing things that pursuing things that are uniquely passion projects for us. That's why we are so early all the time on so many things.” - Phillip
  • {00:46:58} - “Retail is both one of the best applications for technology and one of the best ways to understand how technology should actually be used and then spit out for other reasons.” - Brian
  • {00:57:24} - “That's what a lot of brands are trying to do, which is make a mark in the culture that allows them to sit outside of the stream of consciousness. And maybe some photography from Haus is a really good example of it was profoundly of the time and will never escape its own gravity. It will be stuck in that time forever. And maybe for the brand equity, that's a good thing. That's what brands want. So that means you go through an awkward phase where at some point in the future, people make fun of it and deride it, and then it becomes nostalgic.” - Phillip

Associated Links:

Have any questions or comments about the show? Let us know on futurecommerce.com, or reach out to us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or LinkedIn. We love hearing from our listeners!

Brian: [00:00:00] Or... So this is my contention. When you're going into a business, the actual metric is not actually a product market fit, it's post-mimesis product size. That's your actual TAM. Your Total Addressable Market is what happens when mimesis shifts to something else, and how much is left of that market when that happens?

Phillip: [00:00:29] Hello, and welcome to Future Commerce. The second try of recording the podcast at the intersection of culture and commerce. I'm Phillip.

Brian: [00:01:48] And I'm Brian.

Phillip: [00:01:49] Brian, you got bit by Elon last night when we tried to record this episode.

Brian: [00:01:53] I did. Yeah. I think Elon intentionally throttles me if he knows we're going to be recording. He's listened to our old material. I'm sure. I'm sure he has.

Phillip: [00:02:04] Oh for sure. Yeah.

Brian: [00:02:04] He's listened to our old stuff.

Phillip: [00:02:06] 2018 when you declared you were over Elon Musk... That's when it was over for Future Commerce. I feel like I've been shadowbanned again on some platforms. Twitter. Maybe it's your fault. Maybe it's because you've been very outspoken.

Brian: [00:02:22] I think it's likely. Elon definitely pays attention to everything I've ever said.

Phillip: [00:02:29] {laughter} Well, today, we've got a lot to cover. Elon will not be part of this discussion, but we are gonna cover a little bit about developments in AI technology. Something called Animate Anywhere, I think, is a really interesting technology that we'll cover a little bit, you know, in our ongoing five and a half year coverage of the growth of deepfakes, shallow fakes, and all the rest. A little bit of shoppable TV and Walmart's forays into shoppable TV and maybe even a little bit of Black Mirror conversation. But, before that, Brian, we haven't spoken since Muses Art Basel, Miami Beach. How was it? How was your trip home? Give me the deets.

Brian: [00:03:15] That was the coolest thing we've ever done. There's no question. The level of detail that was there. I am astounded with what we were able to do as a team. We have an incredible team.

Phillip: [00:03:33] Give us a little summary of what our Muses at Art Basel event was all about.

Brian: [00:03:39] So we had we had a three day event down on Miami Beach, right near the convention center, just a few minutes walk away.

Phillip: [00:03:51] Lincoln Road.

Brian: [00:03:52] Right on Lincoln Road. Yeah.

Phillip: [00:03:53] The shopping and culture destination for Miami Beach.

Brian: [00:03:57] And we had this incredible building. I'm sure if you're a fan of the podcast or of our content you've seen in some of the photos, historic Art Deco bank, a Chase bank that was eventually converted into a Banana Republic, and we got to use this really interesting space. It still had some of the counters left from when it was a bank, and then the vault was in there, and there was an upstairs and a downstairs, and there were dressing rooms that we filled up with art. They were perfect places to put displays of art. It just couldn't have been a better building or a better location, honestly.

Phillip: [00:04:40] Truly incredible. It's a miracle, actually, that we even got in there, from what I keep hearing. Yeah.

Brian: [00:04:45] Oh, it's wild. And I don't think that building's going to be around for much longer. That might be the last pop up event that happens in that building. Potentially.

Phillip: [00:04:54] 10,000 square foot is a lot of space to fill in any capacity, especially Banana Republic.

Brian: [00:05:03] Do they have the assortment to be able to fill up a building like that? That's probably why it didn't work out.

Phillip: [00:05:10] If you include everything that they're selling at Costco, which I think you picked up a pair of pants while you were in Miami, a banana republic pair of pants at Costco. I watched. I witnessed it.

Brian: [00:05:20] It is ironic that we were in a former Banana Republic, and I bought Banana Republic pants at Costco.

Phillip: [00:05:28] It's wild. That's a whole other story for a whole other time. But one of the incredible pieces of the history of this building is the way that these art deco buildings are preserved. I keep talking about how unbelievably everything came together for Muses. And, of course, Muses wasn't just the event Art Basel, it's also a forthcoming annual journal from Future Commerce that we're gonna be selling. The first Art Basel editions went to people that attended our event Live, but it will be coming out via our eCommerce in just a couple weeks, and preorders will be happening hopefully by the end of the year. Shipping out middle of January, so stay tuned for that. You'll definitely hear about it on the podcast. You'll definitely hear about it on the newsletter. But we decided on a color palette for the brand of Muses in June, maybe, July.

Brian: [00:06:26] Yeah.

Phillip: [00:06:27] And that was well before we ever toured this particular building. Just turned out to be the most perfect activation space because the original terrazzo that is protected and the original marble that is protected in that building as part of the Art Deco sort of historic site, it's perfect for color palette.

Brian: [00:06:48] It really did. It did. The whole vibe of the building matched our vibe, which is crazy.

Phillip: [00:06:55] Of for sure.

Brian: [00:06:55] Like you said, we developed that whole feel before we even toured the building, and we had no expectations about what building we would get, and like you said, it was a really big space. We filled it up so well. When you walked in the door immediately you were confronted by, well, art, that was actively being created by a machine based on an artist, which is pretty cool, and we had this company called Acrylic Robotics that had this crazy robot our arm that was drawing these beautiful art pieces.

Phillip: [00:07:36] Painting. It was actually dipping a brush in paint and painting. It was a collaboration with a local Miami artist named MrAngarita.

Brian: [00:07:48] Yes.

Phillip: [00:07:48] And produced three of these works. We actually have a forthcoming podcast, which should be landing before end of the year. We're gonna run the table. Muses week will be here in just a little bit instead of slow dripping the content from our Muses live panel recording. We're gonna put it all out, like we do Step by Step or another sort of limited series. We're gonna kinda let you binge it in the course of a week here, hopefully, in the next few days as we kinda wrap up the content year here at Future Commerce. But we had Chloe Ryan, who's the CEO of Acrylic Robots, sit on the panel. We had a conversation with her and her perspective is this is a new technology that allows for reproduction, not mass reproduction, but reproduction for digital artists to actually sell web to print, direct to consumer, print on demand paintings of the first of its kind and sort of launching a marketplace, which is a commerce-centered marketplace. So, yes, it's all the things that we talk about...

Brian: [00:08:53] It is.

Phillip: [00:08:53] As one of, I think, 13 activations when you kinda add it all up. The first thing that you were greeted with when you walked in the door at Muses at 1100 Lincoln Road, during that week of Art Basel, was this personification of technology, innovation, art, and commerce-centered marketplaces all coming together all at one time.

Brian: [00:09:17] It is really cool, and you had a great discussion with Chloe about what a reproduction means and why it's important, why it's valuable, how it's connecting you to the artist. It was super, super good. So looking forward to that content. And like you said, the activations kept going from there, and we had a party on Wednesday, we had guided conversations and tours on Thursday, we had content and panels on Friday. It felt action-packed the whole week. And, of course, thank you so much to our partners, Adobe, especially for co-presenting with us. We couldn't have done it without them.

Phillip: [00:10:00] Adobe Commerce has been our long time collaborators, and you really can't escape the idea that the world's most creative company is partnering during one of the most important cultural, art events in the world to help push commerce and art forward. And that's really what Muses is all about. It's about finding those areas of innovation and inspiration in our world, and we believe that those are expressed for our ecosystem and the people who create modern commerce experiences. So, obviously, thank you so much to Adobe Commerce for making it happen and to all of our partners, who partnered with us, from top to bottom at Muses for backing this high concept, high creative, long three day event that is truly a first of its kind in the ecosystem. I do wanna give a couple shout outs while we're at it because we can wrap it up and get into the main content of today's episode. But obviously, we spent a ton of time and energy planning and money to support the arts and to not have sort of a thin veneer of art over top of an otherwise technologist-centered event. And that wouldn't have been possible without the partnership and generosity of Tam Gryn, who is a renowned curator in the South Florida art ecosystem and former curator at SHOWFIELDS. Nobody understands the intersection of art and commerce like Tam. And so thank you, Tam, for your work, your network, your brilliance, your insights, all of the, I just, I would say very, very close partnership in making this your Art Basel activation 2023.

Brian: [00:11:55] Yes. We feel so lucky.

Phillip: [00:11:56] Oh, we are unbelievably lucky. And, of course, Tam brought along with her an incredible ecosystem, from Web3. She literally wrote the book on NFTs in 2020, for empowering new digital artists. And regardless of what you think of Web3 and NFTs, it brought a brand new channel and a new marketplace for people who otherwise were just hobbyists to try to pursue art as a living and to enable a channel for commerce for artists, and I think that's a worthwhile discussion to be had. Also, one that seems a little more culturally relevant now than it did this time last year.

Brian: [00:12:34] Yeah totally.

Phillip: [00:12:35] So that's fun. {laughter} Bull market 2.0.

Brian: [00:12:39] I don't know about bull market, but use cases are actually abounding. And I feel like utility is starting to take over, which is what it needed in the first place. And so slow crawl back up to the path of enlightenment.

Phillip: [00:12:55] Yeah, that's the Gartner hype cycle

Brian: [00:12:57] That's what it reminds me of.

Phillip: [00:12:58] It's going to be a very, very slopey slope.

Brian: [00:13:01] {laughter} I do wanna say one more thing, and I think you called it out earlier, but I do wanna emphasize this. This was not skinovation, if you will. I think the importance here of having that depth is what sets apart Future Commerce in so many ways. We're not just slapping something on top of something else. There's meaning and layers to what we did there, and I think that's what, for me, set the event apart so much from other things that I saw at Art Basel. There's a lot of parties and there's a lot of galleries out there, and that's not to take away from parties. They're fun, and that's not to take away from galleries. They're cool. But what we did, there were so many layers to connecting art to the real world to concepts that actually affect us in our lives on an ongoing basis, and I just so happy with the outcome.

Phillip: [00:14:09] I'm glad you are. I am too. This is our third year doing some kind of activation during Art Basel, Miami Beach. I'm not sure what 2024 will hold. Because I think that we can continue to activate there. I believe that what is required in these sort of techno-cultural events is a support of leadership in the brand ecosystem outside of just luxury. Where luxury often partners with art or transportation, mobility, finance, Fintech, and traditional payments. You have all of these things that will always be part of cultural events because that's where high net worth individuals hang out. But what we really need to continue to see and what we did see, I think we proved this year, was that there are literally hundreds and maybe thousands, because we had thousands of people RSVP to come to our events.

Brian: [00:15:56] Yeah.

Phillip: [00:15:57] Over the three days. With very little overlap in the audiences between. So we had a night just for eCommerce professionals. We had a day just for Future Commerce Live panel recording, for friends of Future Commerce, movers and shakers, people who are thought leaders who came and shared the platform with us. And then we had the Future Commerce audience come out, with the doors propped open for passersby to come in and experience art plus commerce. So I think we are continuing to prove that this is a changing event and one that I think requires continual examination for people in the leadership ecosystem to make this part of their itinerary every year. The timing is just not great for retail, and that's gonna be a thing that we'll have to contend with. But I think it's worth...

Brian: [00:16:48] Yeah. And there were some incredible retail activations there. I got to do the Clarks' activation. Oh my gosh. That was so fun.

Phillip: [00:16:53] Tell me more about that. So Tara Mcrae, obviously, featured in the Muses Journal is one of our muses for 2023. Tell me more about the activation that you went to for Clarks.

Brian: [00:17:04] Yeah. So it was it was super cool. It was set back in Wynwood in a really cool building, and as you walked in, you of course bumped into some food and a bar and so on, and it was just hopping, and I was late. I was very, very late. It was just loaded with people.

Phillip: [00:17:27] Wow.

Brian: [00:17:28] I don't know how many people they put through. It must have been a lot because you could see...

Phillip: [00:17:34] Was it a party?

Brian: [00:17:34] Trash cans were already full. It was already like, it was, no, it was a party, and beyond that side of it, it was a workshop and they had all these incredible creators and artists that had all of these classic Clarks silhouettes, different types of shoes, and they were customizing them, and then you could actually go in and customize them. I didn't have time to do customization, but thank you so much, Tara, for the pair of shoes. Those were incredible. I love them. But the people were painting them and they were adding different types of materials to them, and there were all kinds of things. I've got a little video I took of what was going on, but it was just there was material everywhere, all over these workstations, and different people showing people how to do things, and everyone was taking pictures. There was the step and repeat, it was the whole thing, and the whole event was phenomenal. I'm sure they have to be happy with the outcome.

Phillip: [00:18:51] For sure.

Brian: [00:18:51] It was just it was hopping. It was great. It was a good time.

Phillip: [00:18:56] So let me, I kinda wanna pull together a couple of threads here because there's something really... There's something that I kind of want to pull together as, like, okay let's transition to some of the content for this last week, and this might be one of our last just you and me podcasts for the year before we have Muses this week. Of course, Future Commerce taking a couple of weeks off. We do have a ton of content still coming to you over the next few weeks, but we are gonna take off. So you'll be getting things that we've been planning here through the end of the year. And then, of course, first week back, I believe, it might come out around the same day as last year, but our annual predictions episodes, we'll have a looking forward episode of our 2024 predictions will come out, and that's usually our biggest episode of the year. We'll also do an episode, Brian, of us looking back on 2023 predictions, and I cannot wait to take a victory lap on some Walmart content.

Brian: [00:19:57] You killed it. You killed it. I had a couple. I had a couple winners in there too, but I don't know. I think you nailed it.

Phillip: [00:20:04] I'm really pumped for it. I do wanna, let's take a little bit of a detour because there are a couple things that I think might help pull some things together. The Clarks pairing with artists to make a customized shoe for folks that are sort of influencers, but activating Art Basel, I think, kinda hits on this really, I would say, culturally relevant Venn diagram where you have to do lots of things as a brand to justify doing them, but they also drive you towards being the cultural brand that stays relevant for all time. For instance, we talked to Tara Mcrae about Clarks activating in the metaverse, which is becoming, I think, a lot more important, especially for entertainment personalities. This last week, Brian, we just saw Nicki Minaj launch what was supposed to be a week long digital fashion,

Brian: [00:21:09] Yeah. Pink Friday 2. Exactly.

Phillip: [00:21:13] Her album, which I think is the 1st album of hers in, like, nearly 8 or 9 years. So it's a big deal for Nicki Minaj fans, but it became an even bigger deal for co-creation because the multiplayer brand was in full effect. Of course, multiplayer brands sort of our trend of the year, our theme of the year in this idea that brands no longer are in full control of their own story and their own destiny and that customers now have the tools en masse to be creative and to contribute to the lore and the story and world-building that is going to be required to build brands in the future. So Nicki Minaj launched this Roblox activation. And this Roblox activation took on a life of its own. It was called Gag City, And it started with one press image from Nikki's team, in support of Pink Friday 2, it became an entire world within the space of a week, both on Roblox and on social media, where people were creating images in Midjourney and DALL E sort of adding to their own story of what...

Brian: [00:22:23] The lore.

Phillip: [00:22:24] Yeah.

Brian: [00:22:25] They're adding to the lore.

Phillip: [00:22:26] Yeah. And bringing brands into the mix like Chili's. {laughter}

Brian: [00:22:31] Yeah. I was thinking of the same thing. That image is forever emblazoned in my brain. I think of all the images that I remember from this Gag City, that one will be the one that sticks with me forever.

Phillip: [00:22:43] What's wild about the way that the fans, the fan club, the stans of Nicki Minaj are called Barbz, which is skirting really close to Barbies, which also is very culturally relevant this year as well because Barbenheimer.

Brian: [00:23:01] Just worked out really well.

Phillip: [00:23:02] And this is a long time running. Right? The Barbz have been a force to be reckoned with for a long time. But they are sort of creating beef in Gag City. Projecting images of Ariana Grande and picking fights with Swifties, into their own metaverse, creating their own payment methods that are very dystopic. Nicki Minaj, for some reason, is handing out CDs in some of these images to the impoverished citizens of her fantasy world.

Brian: [00:23:38] It's just so yeah. There's everything about that hits on all the trends we talked about.

Phillip: [00:23:44] Sure.

Brian: [00:23:45] The metaverse, physical media coming back, even though it's not real physical media, in this case, it's like a throwback to physical media.

Phillip: [00:23:54] Yeah. It's the digital imagined version of what physical media might be like. And that was a trend this year too is that, you know, we're so overdue for a physical media format revolution. I think that there's, obviously, it's a topic of, A book that we carried in the Muses shop, A Cyber Archeology of Checkpoints, written by a friend of the show, Ruby Thelot.

Brian: [00:24:22] Speaking of Ruby, Ruby wrote an incredible article or released an incredible article recently about paracosms. I feel like this falls directly into that idea of the sort of the paracosm, which is an idea that it's a fantasy world effectively.

Phillip: [00:24:45] But one specifically, you persist through your life.

Brian: [00:24:49] Right.

Phillip: [00:24:50] A world you came up... We talked about this recently is and your boys have a paracosm.

Brian: [00:24:55] Yeah. My kids did. They invented a paracosm. That's right. It's true. My kids, we talked about this on the after dark episode, I think, but, yeah, One of my kids came up with this land of creatures and they have a language that he invented, that he has to think about how to translate. He's actually quizzed his brothers on translating the language, and there is an accent in English for this language.

Phillip: [00:25:27] Wow.

Brian: [00:25:28] It's... Yeah. And they do whole interviews for us, little cultural interviews where they talk about the geopolitical situations and what they like in their culture and what's interesting to them and how to get back and forth between our world and their world, and the geography. It's a whole paracosm that they've invented, with its own language. It's wild.

Phillip: [00:25:56] And that's effectively you know, removed the childhood aspect of sort of persisting some lore throughout your whole life. The lure of Gag City is one that is constantly evolving, and people are not just contributing to it. There seems to be very little in the way of argument in this community as to what should be part of the lore and what shouldn't be. Anything goes. And I feel like that is interesting... That is an interesting affect of the multiplayer brand where there really isn't a means for any curation or editorialization. Nobody owns or gatekeeps the lore of Gag City. By nature of what it is, it can be whatever you want it to be.

Brian: [00:26:48] Right.

Phillip: [00:26:49] It doesn't have to be utopic. It can be dystopic too, where battles are breaking out between Swifties. And I find that to be, I know this is not a prediction episode, but that seems very durable to me because the way that this community is working this lure together is very yes/and. They're all okay with whatever, and that means anybody can contribute with very little gatekeeping.

Brian: [00:28:26] You know what's really interesting about this too? This plays really nicely into the concept of Muses, in that Muses inspire, right? So brands, the whole brand police thing was a control, this is who we are, this is our identity, don't mess with us, this is it. That is the whole point of Muses is we have to shift from being a monolith to a muse. You have to shift from being something that's like, this is what we are to this is how we inspire you, and then give people an engine to make that all happen. And what's really interesting as well, as you were talking, I started thinking about this as totally off the cuff, but this is the rails for the next world, and hear me out. The Internet and technology is often built on just whatever takes hold at the time. We built most of the web on WordPress. It kind of persisted forever because it was the thing available that was open enough for people to kind of all get on the same page about. The rails for what's next in brand, I believe, is also true. We sort of build on top of whatever takes hold at the moment. And so these worlds that are being built now, if you're building world, if you're a world builder now, who knows how adopted that might be in decades to come. We don't know what kind of foundation we're laying and what will end up becoming the foundation for a lot, lot, lot, lot more. Maybe Gag City sticks around for a long time.

Phillip: [00:30:21] Well, there's you know, in the world of Roblox, it could persist, beyond the timed activation. The problem is the fidelity of the imagery that's produced by MidJourney is a lot more inspiring than the actual lived experience of the Roblox universe itself.

Brian: [00:30:40] Right.

Phillip: [00:30:41] And that is one downside here is the imagination of the community and the fidelity of the tools that they're using now far outpaces the actual Roblox experience in a way that I feel like the Roblox experience is actually kind of a letdown, which is very multiplayer brand in and of itself. So if we go back to the example of the Prada/Nike Collaboration being a letdown, that is only a letdown because the imagined collaborations were so much more creative coming out of, say, a Midjourney or a DALL E than the actual Black and Tiffany blue shoe was itself.

Brian: [00:31:26] You know what, Nicki should do is she should go collect all the coolest stuff that she can find and put it into a book. It'll be so cool, like a print book.

Phillip: [00:31:41] Because it is all public domain I mean, this is where...

Brian: [00:31:46] Anyone could go make it. Right.

Phillip: [00:31:47] Anybody could make that book and that would also be very multiplayer in and of itself. The Future Commerce Multiplayer quarterly zine could be about one stellar example. A cyber archaeology, if you will, to use Ruby's term. But it could be one stellar example every quarter of a multiplayer moment.

Brian: [00:32:13] Do you know who did this really well initially? And it's not quite the same thing as we're talking about now, but the band Gorillaz was such... They were so ahead of the vibe, the digital spaces, the transcending the physical and the digital, and then involving storytelling, and other people's stories. I remember getting a print book of Gorillaz. I think I gave it to somebody for Christmas, and it was just the lore-building in that book was off the charts. It was wild.

Phillip: [00:32:58] The only thing that's changed between then and now is it required a large financial backer to make that happen before. It required someone to make an investment in the art, the print layout, the copywriting, the distribution, spinning up the sales channels for it, getting people to buy it, stock it in retailers. That's not really how it needs to work anymore at all.

Brian: [00:33:26] Right. Totally.

Phillip: [00:33:26] The path to the thing same thing can exist. There's probably more demand for such a thing now, but anybody can make that. And that's what's so fascinating about something like Gag City where it used to be just fan fiction, the Gag City background could be a setting for many stories in the future, and that could elevate the next level of creators to a really well-realized universe where almost anything can happen. Shifting gears, though, and sort of also using that Venn diagram from Clarks is this idea that the handmade or pairing with artists is something that is truly differentiating for an otherwise commodity product in the world. There is a movie I'm gonna take my kids to today, which may very well be the very last Hayao Miyazaki movie ever to be made, which is, The Studio Ghibli, or GKIDS, distributor here in the United States. The Boy and the Heron is in limited release right now. Just happens to have two showtimes left for this week, at a theater near me dubbed in English, which is probably how we would go see it, for my 11 to 12 year old.

Brian: [00:34:44] Yeah.

Phillip: [00:34:45] We're gonna go see that movie today. And as with all of these, I don't know how many Miyazaki movies or Studio Ghibli you've seen. They're all kind of wild. They're out there. Storytelling is very different, culturally, especially Miyazaki's take on childhood fantasy. But this might be one of the last hand-animated, done in the hard way, hand created, invest in artists pieces that we'll see in my lifetime because people just don't do that. The artisanship of that technology of hand-drawn animation requires a stellar creator and requires intense belief in a creator for the financial backing to make that happen. And I want to witness it one more time live in a theater before the era is over.

Brian: [00:35:39] Yeah. End of an era.

Phillip: [00:35:41] Yeah. The end of the era is over. This might be the very last one. Miyazaki's not getting any younger.

Brian: [00:35:47] I think you are dead on about this because the stories can be told through much cheaper means with similar effect, at least in the eyes of studios. The goal is to make money. And so they're going to get there by the most efficient means possible. So it will be interesting to see, and what's gonna happen is animation as as a profession is gonna dwindle, and you're gonna get really incredible, really specific artisanal films that are built by these people who are hanging on to this dying art form that will exist in the world, but it just won't be mass like it was in the past, because that was the only way to do an animated film. So, yeah, it's all about to change. I think you're dead on. This is the end of an era.

Phillip: [00:37:01] Not just the end of an era, but you're right in the fact that we can kind of approximate or produce something very similar to that today.

Brian: [00:37:12] Right.

Phillip: [00:37:13] Obviously, we've seen hand-drawn animation from big studios. I think The Princess and The Frog is sort of in that vein, but uses technology to push it forward.

Brian: [00:37:21] Pretty old now. Right?

Phillip: [00:37:23] It's fairly old, but it's of this era. By 2020, this is the insanity of The Boy in the Heron. I'm just taking this little journey. But 60 animators, as of May of 2020, they employed 60 animators doing traditional hand-drawn animation for 7 years to produce 36 minutes of film.

Brian: [00:37:51] Wild.

Phillip: [00:37:52] And I have to believe I guess, I'll give my review maybe on the after dark when I've actually seen it, and it's all said and done. But there's something that is, I think, intangibly different about things that require craftsmanship, artisanship, phenomenal amounts of time and human effort that come through sort of spiritually or subtextually in the creation of something like this that cannot be approximated purely through technology. Oh, here he comes. Yeah.

Brian: [00:38:29] I know. You just teed me up. You didn't even mean to.

Phillip: [00:38:32] I didn't even mean to. Yeah.

Brian: [00:38:34] I just bought The Mysteries, which is Bill Watterson's first published work in what is it, 30 years or something like that. I don't know. That might be wrong. I don't know how.

Phillip: [00:38:47] Calvin and Hobbs.

Brian: [00:38:48] Calvin and Hobbs creator. Talk about hand-drawn. It's interesting. He's been working on this thing for 15 years or something, alongside John Kasked. I might be pronouncing his last name wrong. Again, I only read things.

Phillip: [00:39:03] That's okay. It's a flex. I only read. I don't take in other forms of media. So I sometimes mispronounce...

Brian: [00:39:11] I watch so much TV. That's not true. But I read a couple interviews about the process, and he said it was they both said it was easily the most painful thing they have ever been through in their lives. Because it was just like, but not from like they didn't fight about things, but they had lots of disagreements. They have very, very different artists and different minds and different ways of viewing the world, and it took them iteration, after iteration, and after iteration, they threw things away, they started over, it was like, just a painful, painful process of getting the art right with the words and just the perfect pairing, and I'm not done with it yet. It's actually a very easy read, a very short read. I just bought this, and I can feel it. You can feel it in the artwork, in the storytelling. It's like each moment in this is so just it's a work of art unto itself. The cover. The cover is just...

Phillip: [00:40:21] Yeah. I'm looking at it. If you're watching on the YouTube channel, you'd see it. What's the title?

Brian: [00:40:27] The Mysteries. Yeah. And it's the description is it's a fable for grown ups. It's a a long ago kingdom is afflicted with unexplainable calamities, and I'd actually, I won't read the whole thing. But, anyway, and also the book itself is incredible. It's fabric, very unique feel to the picture on the front, and then the way that they did it was just very beautiful, and you can feel it.

Phillip: [00:41:03] Yay for physical media. I feel the same way about the print we've produced over the last year.

Brian: [00:41:10] Yes.

Phillip: [00:41:12] I keep opining with our creative director, Jesse Tyler, about how we're always just too early for things to be easy for us at Future Commerce. Last year, we wrote Archetypes, 240 pages, in the journal, and we wrote it and published it the month before Chat GPT came out. So everything was done the hard way, obviously. Right? Couldn't do what I did this year, which is we wrote things the hard way, and then I threw it through chat GPT and said, "Critique this for me."

Brian: [00:41:52] Yeah.

Phillip: [00:41:52] Give me the ways that you if you were to tear this apart, tell me what I could do to make this better. So not just creating content. I don't believe in just making content. Also, I've never really had something that's come out of the AI that really moved me. Everything that's ever come out of an AI wind up, like, using as inspiration rewriting completely, but that's...

Brian: [00:42:18] Yeah. It's like C level work.

Phillip: [00:42:22] Yeah. Exactly. It's not barely

Brian: [00:42:25] Like high school C level, which is incredible. Which is incredible that we have a machine that can spit. It's a testological marble, but it's high school C level work. I don't wanna read it. It's boring.

Phillip: [00:42:35] Very boring. So, so that's one thing. But this year, I was, like, oh, well, maybe we could, produce product photography for the journal. That way, we can, you know, at least get some really nice product shots so that we can sell it. And, of course, none of the AI product photography tools work all that well for an existing piece of product. You can't just take a picture of the journal or something and, like, shove it into a scene. It doesn't really work that way. We're just a hair early every year on this journal. It's a complete aside. Anyway,  the spiritual, the human investment. Let me say it this way. The human investment that goes into creating something that is purely artistic is something that made the rounds this week too in a quote that I got tagged in on Instagram, by our friend who posted this quote of Rick Rubin, his quote about how he doesn't make things...

Brian: [00:43:40] For yourself. Yeah.

Phillip: [00:43:41] Yeah. He makes things for him and not for an audience. I find that to be fascinating because that's kind of how we've approached content creation is we're creating things for us that are interesting and appealing to us. And the reason Future Commerce feels different is because we're making it for ourselves first and for an audience, not even second or third. I think we're doing things and pursuing things that are uniquely passion projects for us. That's why we are so early all the time on so many things.

Brian: [00:44:10] Yes.

Phillip: [00:44:11] One day... One day, we'll look back and we'll say, wow. I don't know how we did it. It's gonna be an incredible story. I don't know how we'll have done it and made a real profitable media company out of it. {laughter} But we somehow have just been constantly ahead on certain things. Anyway, you can feel the difference. I don't know. I guess that's the point I'm trying to make.

Brian: [00:44:39] Because we make stuff for ourselves, So that's what we want to consume.

Phillip: [00:44:46] Anyway, I do wanna think. So something that's sort of terrifying, but also maybe really interesting is how commerce continues to lead the charge on technology, on the technology forefront. There was a piece that we put out a few years ago about shallow fakes and the idea of deepfakes being used in a product photography context. And there's a white paper, from the Institute For Intelligent Computing, which is from the Alibaba group, with five co-authors, all from Alibaba. It was an academic, publicly posted paper, talking about a new technology, that was a neural network that they developed, that does iterative, creation to imagine a reference image with a reference pose or a sequence of poses to create styles of animation that are wild. It's called Animate Anyone, consistent and controllable image to video synthesis for character animation. And, effectively, what it does is it takes a single image and turns it into sort of what looks like in the demo as TikTok dances. But It's being used in a bunch of different context. One for a sort of anime, one for what looks like sort of video game, mobile game ads. Another is very obviously fashion shoots that would be used in a product detail page context. So commerce leading the way. Alibaba Group out in front of practical uses of shallow fakes or these Neural networks.

Brian: [00:46:39] The benefit of an at scale retailer, they can be a technology company as well. Amazon proved that. Alibaba is doing the same. There's been massive improvements in other types of technologies from companies like Walmart that have been, you know, used throughout retail. Retail is both one of the best applications for technology and one of the best ways to understand how technology should actually be used and then spit out for other reasons. Amazon's clearly the best example of this. They've developed so many pieces of technology that have been applied to other things like AWS and Alexa, other things like that. It's just interesting, I think, that we haven't seen more of this even. But I think it's because retail is really hard. And so the idea of trying to build some technology on top is like building something from scratch is always a harder pill to swallow than buying something from someone else. So you gotta have a scale to do it.

Phillip: [00:47:55] Well, the scale and the potential target application where it's not purely academic. So the pure academic nature of this might have been, "Hey let me show you ways that we can animate some character in an anime," which is part of this publication, for sure. However, what they really take a long time to do is they show you the various animating styles. And the human animating styles are not just dances, in the paper, which is available on the open source site GitHub, because it is also a library. The library they took down. Wonder why. But there are runway walks. So part of this is it's not just analyzing source video. It's also taking frame animation, posable frames that you might use and say 3D animation that comes with, I don't know if you pay attention or anyone out there pays attention to things animation like in Blender. But there's a lot of content out in the world about the hard parts of 3D animation is creating a model, not just the model, but also giving it structure and weight painting, creating virtual armatures to be able to animate things. There are a lot of libraries for character poses and a lot of, like, open source libraries, that are available for things like Unity Gamers, where things like runway walks can now be applied to video images, and that gets interpreted as a commercial avenue for this type of use. Anyway, fascinating stuff.

Brian: [00:49:49] It's interesting. Speaking of shallow fakes, and Jesse Tyler, just he had a tweet blow up, where he happened to discover and I don't know why he was on the Haus website.

Phillip: [00:50:13] I think he saw an Instagram ad.

Brian: [00:50:16] Yeah. That's Instagram. Yeah. He got targeted by an Instagram ad for Haus, the former I guess, well, I shouldn't say former, the sort of wine cocktail brand that was a millennial darling, many years back now, I guess, and then kind of went out of business and got resurrected and repurchased, and he discovered that they were selling caviar and that they had gone back and modified previous images of product and had Photoshopped caviar. In their pivot to caviar, they Photoshopped caviar tins into their images, which is just a very unique case of reinterpreting your past really. And his tweet blew up recently because everyone's wondering why Haus this pivoting the caviar, which is probably being drop shipped. Pretty wild.

Phillip: [00:51:18] Oh, you don't think that they're sourcing, at the... They're not sourcing...

Brian: [00:51:23] Some kinda deal with...

Phillip: [00:51:26] Caviar producer.

Brian: [00:51:27] Yeah. Fisher people.

Phillip: [00:51:29] Yeah. Fisher people? You don't think that they're making their own caviar direct to consumer, you know, their own supply chain for caviar? Here's the real funny part of this. The Photoshops are obvious Photoshops.

Brian: [00:51:46] Yeah.

Phillip: [00:51:48] I don't want to give anyone any credit, but this is the kind of thing that makes me scratch my head, that makes me think to myself, is this Cunningham's Law? Are you familiar with Cunningham's Law?

Brian: [00:52:01] I think I am, but I forget. So tell me. Remind me.

Phillip: [00:52:04] Cunningham's Law is based on a social media era phenomenon that the fastest way to get the answer or truth on something is to post incorrect information. And people jump into threads basically correcting you and telling you that something is right or wrong.

Brian: [00:52:26] Yes.

Phillip: [00:52:26] So rather than googling it for yourself and looking for right information, posting wrong information is the surest way to get corrected. I think in the modern era, Cunningham's Law can be reinterpreted to say, posting something that is obviously bad is the surest way to farm engagement. And this seems just bad enough and obvious enough to anyone who would have been paying attention that it makes me wonder if it was deliberate. Now that might be giving them too much credit.

Brian: [00:52:57] Oh, man. I think that's probably too much credit, but it worked. They probably got more intention than they would have got on actually going and sourcing caviar and telling a story around it. Doing this is probably a better move.

Phillip: [00:53:18] Bad photoshops as a media strategy. Right?

Brian: [00:53:24] Oh, jeez.

Phillip: [00:53:25] This happens a lot. Right? We actually see this a lot in the modern day, lots and lots of creators on short-form video, in particular, do things to farm engagement. Probably the surest example of Cunningham's law is the frustrating, unsatisfying piece of content where somebody intentionally is painting a wall, but then they leave that one section unpainted, And the video cuts off. It's meant to provoke a reaction.

Brian: [00:54:02] Like, "Oh, that was just staged."

Phillip: [00:54:05] But even when you know it's staged, even when you know what you're doing, you engage anyway.

Brian: [00:54:11] Right.

Phillip: [00:54:11] And that is part, I think, that is a valid media strategy today, especially from a brand. So Jesse's big takeaway here was the pivot to caviar as a category extension for Haus is stereotypically luxury. And using a bad Photoshop of preexisting imagery shot by the Founder of the brand, iconically so, which evoked the aesthetic of the brand. A bad Photoshop job on that is stereotypically low rent.

Brian: [00:54:57] Well, it might have been Gin Lane shooting those.

Phillip: [00:55:01] Who might have been shooting?

Brian: [00:55:02] Gin Lane. Wasn't it Gin Lane?

Phillip: [00:55:05] I think Helena did all of the original photography. Yeah.

Brian: [00:55:08] I thought they worked with Gin Lane. Maybe I'm wrong.

Phillip: [00:55:10] They definitely worked... I don't know. Actually, they may have worked with Gin Lane for some of the branding assets.

Brian: [00:55:17] The branding assets.

Phillip: [00:55:18] But I'm pretty sure that Helena took credit for a lot of the original lifestyle photography.

Brian: [00:55:26] Yeah. It was a vibe.

Phillip: [00:55:26] Certainly. It certainly was.

Brian: [00:55:27] In fact, I would argue that the reason why this is blowing up is because it's actually still running off the original, earned media and brand cache that they had back when they existed. The reason why there's such a strong response to this is because of how iconic Haus was and how far this feels like it's fallen. And now people are piling on to the photography style, And I kinda laugh a little bit because those same people probably praised that photography style back when it was out, and now they wanna pile on to something that failed.

Phillip: [00:56:06] This is so millennial. That is unfortunate. So we have a forthcoming guide with our friends at Nebulab about this phenomenon of sort of a modernist brand trying to establish their own cultural bubble that sits outside of the modern world. So think of it this way. I think that this is really interesting, actually. I'm sure that there is a really great real world analogy for this. Maybe you can help me find it. But it's sort of like ripples in a stream. The best thing that you can do is, you know, in a stream, to cause a long-term effect, you can throw stones into the stream. You have a stream running through your property. Right?

Brian: [00:57:00] I do.

Phillip: [00:57:01] Yeah. I'm sure your boys throw stones or other objects into it. Right?

Brian: [00:57:05] Oh yeah.

Phillip: [00:57:05] You can see the effects of it, but very quickly, the stream is unaffected by the amount of stones you throw until you throw a whole bunch of stones. And you can kind of maybe, you know, maybe they start to poke out the top. Maybe you divert this flow a little bit. I mean, maybe you can make a really big dent if it's a really big rock. I think that's what a lot of brands are trying to do, which is make a mark in the culture that allows them to sit outside of the stream of consciousness. And maybe some photography from Haus is a really good example of it was profoundly of the time and will never escape its own gravity. It will be stuck in that time forever. And maybe for the brand equity, that's a good thing. That's what brands want. So that means you go through an awkward phase where at some point in the future, people make fun of it and deride it, and then it becomes nostalgic.

Brian: [00:57:58] A hundred percent.

Phillip: [00:57:59] That's what the owners, the new owners of Haus, are banking on is the future nostalgia of a brand like Haus being sealed up in an era that you will remember as being pre-pandemic and part of a feeling that you want to bring back to yourself in your life at some point in the future. But for now, it's gonna be something that's not on trend.

Brian: [00:58:23] Yeah. Totally. Oh, I think you're dead on about this. These cycles maybe are happening faster and faster too, because, I think you see something come into train for like a few days even, and everyone sees the whole thing, I was thinking about this, there are trends that happen in language that's created on Twitter in a weekend, in a weekend. And if you'd miss that weekend, you don't know what people like when they say something you're like, "What did I miss?" And then that word or phrase or image might go out of style, and people will be like, "Remember that one thing?" Blah, blah, blah, make fun of it maybe. But then it swings back around later. If it does have that sort of quantum, you said out of time, and like it had that quantum element to it almost where it can be reinterpreted through a new cultural lens and retain some of that value or be reinterpreted. And then I think this is generational, there's the nostalgia where it's reinterpreted through the lens of nostalgia, and then there's the fresh eyes reinterpreting something that maybe fell out of style at one point and realizing that it's actually good and interesting and worth continuing to engage with. Something that I think is really interesting as well, and I do wanna write a whole article on this. And if you've stuck around for this long and you are hearing this, good for you.

Phillip: [00:59:53] You get the preview.

Brian: [00:59:56] Yeah. But it's this idea of cultural or modernist brands that catch a moment of arbitrage, whether it's cultural or channel related, and they think that they found a product market fit. This is everything that every entrepreneur or, like, new brand or the new product release looks at. Like what's the market out there and what's the product that I have is like, can I find a way to make it work? The problem is that a lot of market is created by mimesis, this idea that people want to copy other people and follow along. It's bandwagoning, but it's more than bandwagoning. Sometimes people actually absorb something into themselves and care about it for a while, until the whole culture moves. And I wouldn't necessarily call that bandwagoning, but how does a brand that tries to capture modernists or moments of the time, arbitrage moments whether they're cultural or channel focused, and say that they're an authentic brand for that moment, because if you're not authentic to that moment, oftentimes you don't do well. How do you maintain authenticity post-culture shift? So there are only a few paths you can go here. One of them is, you know, you can change with the times, and try to find something that's tangential or follow your market to whatever thing that they go to and evolve alongside them, and meet them where they're at with something new. You might be able to do that in authentic way potentially. Most of the time though, it looks really inauthentic, like you're abandoning a thing that you were good at, or your product looks dated in the new context, or you stick with what you have, you lose a whole bunch of business and you almost go out of business and survive, or you go out of business, right? So this is my contention is when you're going into a business, the actual metric is not actually a product market fit. It's post-mimesis product size. That's your actual TAM. Your Total Addressable Market is what happens when mimesis shifts to something else. And how much is left of that market when that happens? Now for things that have utility, it may be that even though people move on to something else in their minds, the utility of that product is actually so large and so important that the TAM remains similar to the pre-mimesis moment, but there's a lot of things where post-mimesis, you lose a lot of people, and your actual addressable market was never as large as you thought it was. I think this is what's happening in a lot of VC and a lot of boom invest cycles, so the smart product manager or entrepreneur is thinking about how much demand do I wanna fulfill, even if I sell out that gets me to a point where I'm gonna be okay in a good profitable place when mimesis dies out. And being able to understand what that looks like is a really difficult thing to do. But I do think that there are some markers, and I'm gonna get into that in my article.

Phillip: [01:03:38] I didn't want to interrupt at all because that was the most mic drop salient point you've made on this podcast in 2023. That was post-mimesis market demand, I think, is what you said.

Brian: [01:03:54] Yeah. It's a post-mimesis. Yeah, what's your total addressable market post-mimesis? And I'll come up with a snappy acronym.

Phillip: [01:04:02] The incredible insight there is when you create something, it is of the moment, but for something to endure and to become sort of generational or cultural. For it to be generational, it has to keep that moment alive forever. For it to be cultural, you have to continually recontextualize the moment to matter in every future moment. And that is, I think probably the most durable insight that you could ever have in the way that people create value or create brands and experiences too. From product packaging as as one form of experience to the channel in which you sell that product, in the future, that is always the key insight. The key insight is are you able to create a gravitational pull strong enough that you can start to attract attention to yourself After the moment has come and gone. That's brilliant.

Brian: [01:05:03] And also what parts of your product or your line can can you shift to match cultural moments? Verses what do you keep consistent for all of time and understanding what you can and can't touch is super important. I think about one of my favorite brands and we didn't get into this with something else that I wanted to talk about today, but I guess we can see it for another day. Michael Miraflor tweeted about how the middle, for clothing or products in general, the middle and

Phillip: [01:05:34] High and low, but there's no middle. Right?

Brian: [01:05:36] High and low. There's no middle. There's nothing that's good in the middle that you can count on. And I actually disagree. You just have to know where to look. Yeah. You have to know where to look. A lot of things get left in the dust. We talked about this on our after dark episode, like, how what types of brands I look for what a Brian means, and so you're gonna have to sign up for Future Commerce Plus if you wanna hear more about that, but I really believe that there are brands out there doing good work. Clarks was one of those brands I feel like they've got ignored for a while but made a really good product and was able to keep their company going while they were in the midst of, you know, catching the cultural moments or finding them, They built something that was really solid. Another one is Pendleton, I think, serves the mid market really well. It is a mid market product, and, yes, they have sold out to Michael's point. He responded me on Twitter. Some of their stuff is not very good. It's just cotton or whatever. But some of their core products, the utility that they have at the price point they have is mind blowing for how long it will last and how good it is. So, anyway, long story short, there's a lot more to write about here, and I'll get into it in the article at some point in, early 2023.

Phillip: [01:06:52] 2024, actually.

Brian: [01:06:54] Oh my gosh. 2024. Yeah. This is an hour in here. 2024, we are almost there. This might get published just before then.

Phillip: [01:07:04] Yeah. I think it'll be out this Friday, actually. So we're recording this December 19th. I think you'll listen to this on 22nd, I think. I think that's what I think that's how it's gonna work. Okay. If you made it this far, thank you so much. You know, we didn't get to is the bridal black mirror. I do wanna I'll drop a little thing about that, and then maybe we could talk about it in the after dark

Brian: [01:07:25] Yeah.

Phillip: [01:07:26] For this, for next week. But the era of computational photography...

Brian: [01:07:32] Yes.

Phillip: [01:07:33] Is something that this photo kinda revealed where I don't think that people realize how many moments they've captured on their phone weren't the moment that they believe that they witnessed, but their perception of their memory of the moment is shaped by the photo that was the result of computational algorithms.

Brian: [01:07:56] Dude.

Phillip: [01:07:57] And so, this is one of those things that I experienced recently. I have a very clear recollection of being at one of Underoath's first shows in 1999 at a small venue in Clearwater, Florida called The Refuge, which obviously, no longer exists.

Brian: [01:08:20] A friend cofounded Underoath. Luke Morton?

Phillip: [01:08:26] Shut up, Luke.

Brian: [01:08:29] Yeah.

Phillip: [01:08:29] Luke? What?

Brian: [01:08:31] Luke Morton, yeah, cofounder

Phillip: [01:08:33] Of our gonna have to have a whole aside about that in a second. Holy crap. Okay. Well, anyway, they were all sort of Central Florida band guys, and we were all playing the same shows often. Long story short, I have this very clear memory of being at this show, which a 7 minute recording of that show is now on YouTube, uploaded captured on VHS, uploaded at some point in the last few years, and Found its way algorithmically to me.

Brian: [01:09:07] What?

Phillip: [01:09:08] As a suggested video, and I am on the front row. You can see me in this video. Here's what's wild about this. Ever since seeing that video, my clear memory of being there has faded, and now I remember the video as it stands in VHS on YouTube.

Brian: [01:09:28] Oh my gosh. Yeah. We're being reshaped. This is Marshall McLuhan, baby. Our memory is my memory

Phillip: [01:09:35] Is not great as it is, probably from 25 years of drinking Diet Coke. That's real. That's not a conspiracy theory. But, anyway, for whatever reason, as neurodivergent as TikTok wants me to believe I am, I am frustrated that now my thought of that memory has been replaced by this video that I see that was recommended to me. And I don't know if the algorithm knows that I was there or if a prior search had tipped it off, but that would be an important

Brian: [01:10:06] Google definitely passed over any photos you have over the algorithm.

Phillip: [01:10:11] Anyway, so the the bridal black mirror thing sort of triggered a core memory for me as, one of these, like, modern losses that people haven't really taken stock of just yet. But I think in the next 15, 20 years, we're gonna have to contend with this collective memory, and our collective memory of things, especially Mandela effect being a thing that we will need to have to reconcile with because we already have those problems in the modern age, and they only will accelerate.

Brian: [01:10:41] Combine that with that Haus it's photoshopping caviar onto the table. You're gonna just be thinking that you were at a table with caviar the whole time when in fact it was really a beef jerky tin that was sitting on the table and not a caviar tin.

Phillip: [01:10:58] Yeah. You you you'd so you think it looks like this beef jerky ten? I'm like, that's just that's just snuff. That's just

Brian: [01:11:05] That's just dip, dude. You remember snuff. I remember beef jerky. It definitely wasn't caviar. We know that.

Phillip: [01:11:12] Well, let's think about it this way. Okay. We'll we'll wrap it here. Here's a thought. In the grand scheme of generational brands, if Haus makes it to a century old brand, whatever Haus looks like a century from now, it will not matter a century from now that there were a mere 3 years that separated the initial launch of the hero product and the caviar. People will not remember that those were two separate events. In the future mindset, all of those things collapse down to a single definition of what the brand is now, not what people thought it was as it was evolving in real time.

Brian: [01:11:52] A 100%.

Phillip: [01:11:53] And so that's where it's like...

Brian: [01:11:54] Tyranny images. Back to Ruby Thelot. We're done for. The images are gonna take over our brains.

Phillip: [01:12:02] Well, we started the year saying, we're gonna be techno optimists. I don't know if we're doing a great job finishing out the year being techno optimists.

Brian: [01:12:10] Were we ever techno optimists? I'm not sure.

Phillip: [01:12:12] I was trying.

Brian: [01:12:13] We just said we were gonna be techno optimists.

Phillip: [01:12:15] I tried really hard.

Brian: [01:12:17] We still are. I mean, the problem is that Mark Andreessen kinda ruined it for everyone.

Phillip: [01:12:22] He did a little bit. Alright. Let's leave it there. Thanks for listening to Future Commerce. If you want our unfiltered thoughts and opinions and you wanna get them without the tyranny of advertising, which is our primary business model at Future Commerce. There is a way for you to support the work of Future Commerce without having to listen to ads and to get a little bonus content, that's called Future Commerce Plus. You can get ad free versions of this episode, and all Future Commerce content by going to futurecommerce.com/plus and signing up for the membership, you also get 15% off, merch and print, which is gonna be really handy when we launch Muses Journal, in the bundle for Muses and all of the Muses products, including T shirts, totes, and other accoutrement, all of that will be available for 15% off, which is a very small price to pay for your monthly membership. Cancel anytime. Risk free. Futurecommerce.com/plus. And you can get some bonus content where Brian's gonna wax poetic about his real thoughts on high low versus middle. And, of course, all of that one convenient place, futurecommerce.com/plus. Thank you for listening and for supporting Future Commerce. Our first full time year in the saddle as a bootstrapped media company covering the future of commerce. It's kind of amazing. What a great year 2023 has been. Thank you for all your support. And we'll see you on the other side of 2023. Muses Week is coming up. Stay tuned, and thank you for an amazing year with Future Commerce.

Recent episodes

By clicking “Accept All Cookies”, you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation, analyze site usage, and assist in our marketing efforts. View our Privacy Policy for more information.