The Groundhog Murders

February 3, 2023
VISIONS IV: “the humanities for former emo scene kids in eCommerce

Futurists —today we’re proud to announce THE VISIONS SUMMIT.

We are partnering with the Retail Innovation Conference and Expo to bring thought-provoking executive talks, panels, and case studies, that challenge the way we engage in Commerce.

Since 2020, VISIONS has been the multi-channel home of our boldest ideas and most thought-provoking predictions of the year.This year we are going deeper than ever before, bringing more diverse voices to the conversation — both from inside, and outside, of our ecosystem.

And we’re going to do it, live, and in-person.

Taking place the afternoon of Thursday, June 15, the Visions Summit will feature:

  • The rich history of visual arts and media, and how Commerce is a patron of those art forms. 
  • Innovative thinkers of the modern era and the ways their thinking is shaping our future.  
  • A deep dive into physical activations that merge digital and physical experiences to better understand consumer psychographics. 
  • A discussion around the “not-stalgia movement,” which is driven by brand mashups.  
  • Perspectives on the Establishment/Anti-Establishment Cycle, the Creator Economy, and how brands can prepare for a resurgence of anti-sellout culture.

Read more about our event on the official announcement on the R.I.C.E. website. I hope to see you there!

— Phillip

P.S.we just wrapped up an incredible week of Step by Step. Four eCom founders shared their exit stories. I think it’s worth a listen. Grab the 14-page guide and follow along at

Killer Algorithms. Scientists at Oxford are calling for advanced algorithm regulation that will help keep society safe from certain death. According to their research, superhuman AI could possibly kill everyone. Not terrifying at all. And while we’re talking algo regulation, the Supreme Court will soon consider a case involving algorithms. As our own Brian Lange puts it, “Skynet is real.”

A Groundhog Day of Groundhog Days. In sad news, Canada’s groundhog, Fred la marmotte, was found unresponsive just hours before his ceremonial prediction. And strangely, the same thing happened last year to New Jersey’s groundhog, Milltown Mel, which we also reported on last groundhog day in The Senses. It’s a Groundhog Day inception.

More Sights & Sounds. Has Apple’s App Tracking Transparency (ATT) privacy policy created a recession in social media ad economy? Meta’s stock had one of its best trading days ever, as its stock jumped 23% Thursday. Sergey Brin is back at Google and recently filed his first code request in years. On Wednesday, Microsoft Teams released a premium messaging service powered by ChatGPT, starting at $7 a month. In some truly gunky news, it seems that in certain circles of the dark web, the Mucinex Monster is considered a hottie. Also, is your home printer extorting you?


Fresh Face, Fresh Label. Jenna Ortega signed to Adidas.... on aWednesday. Ortega will be the official face of a new label the company is launching — its first in 50 years.


Cookie Collab. Oreo and South Korean girl group, BLACKPINK, have partnered on limited edition Oreos (which are black and pink). The new treats are rolling out in Asian markets now.

Our Take: We have reported in these pages many, many, many times that Asian culture is fast becoming *the* culture; which is certainly no hot take. The Oreo collaboration with K-pop sensation BLACKPINK comes a year after Lady Gaga’s own collab, which played toward glamified scarcity. 

The BLACKPINK edition is different, as it brings generational marketing to the masses. It reminds us that Gen Alpha is at an intersection: parental dependence, media awareness, subculture identity, and collection as ownership. The under-15s are fueling a resurgence of trading card collection, including
the Pokemonissaince. Collecting physical items in a snack pulls on nostalgic Gen Xer parents which miss the cereal box prize. Brilliant move by Mondelez as they continue to crush prestige licenses and collaborations.

“Hold on to Your Butts” If Jurrasic Park has taught us anything, it's that reintroducing extinct species back into the world’s ecosystem after all their natural predators have also died out is a really good idea. That’s why Colossal Biosciences, a de-extinction company that has committed to bringing back the Wooly Mammoth, the Tasmanian Tiger, and now the Dodo bird, just keeps getting more funding from venture capitalists.

Are We Becoming Ancient Rome? An article by the Atlantic asserts our insatiable appetite for entertainment has begun to obscure what we perceive as the difference between fiction and reality. From delivery drivers dancing (at the request of homeowners) in front of doorbell cameras to citizens streaming themselves breaking into the nation’s Capitol — we can watch it all. As the article notes: A republic requires citizens; entertainment requires only an audience.

Cover Photo by Ralph Katieb on Unsplash

Subscribe to The Senses.

Commerce futurism.
Straight to your inbox.

Thank you for being a risk-taker.
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Share This Post

Commerce futurism for the risk-takers.
Straight to your inbox.

By clicking Subscribe you're confirming that you agree with having The Senses delivered to your email address.
Thank you for subscribing.
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
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.