January 31, 2008

1-28-08 Group Work (Question #4)

During group work on Tuesday, our group discussed how the consumer is permanently denied. We talked about how Adorno and Horkheimer explained that a need is always created in consumers in order to sustain a capitalist society. Adorno and Horkheimer also highlighted how the consumer must "put up with what is out there."
The cell phone market is a good example of how consumers feel they need the newest product. Even though the consumer purchases the newest and hippest cell phone, technology is already a step ahead and creating new features for phones in order to market an “improved� product. Thus, the consumer is always playing catch-up. Unfortunately they will never be satisfied with the product they have since advertisers emphasize the importance of fashioning the enhanced phone. Instead, they are either forced to put up with their purchase or buy another phone.
Our group also discussed how our society is constantly consuming products and services. Fancy coffee, iTunes downloads, and fashion clothing are examples of items we consume repeatedly. The trouble with our constant consumption is that we can never be satisfied with what we have. Fashion goes out of style, new music is produced, and our disposable coffee cup runs out. We have trapped ourselves in a circle of consumption. Satisfaction is non-existent because our advertised "needs" are constantly changing and ever-present.