Topic: “Design futures”

Experience, Commodities, and the American Dream

The psychic center of American social life has shifted from buying things to feeling them.

I’m struck by the implicit force that the “Experience Economy” has on value. When the value we derive from a good or service is inherently tied to our experience of it, this shields our ability to objectively assess its full worth.

For example, the value we assign to social media is a function of how immersed we are with its content (the experience). We don’t consider the opportunity cost of our time and focus. But is the value of Facebook really equal to the number of hours spent engaging with it?

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