Do new charity fundraising tactics by the likes of Madonna and Angelina Jolie signal a new trend in celebrity fundraising? Have people grown fatigued by merely writing checks or donating to a web site? Does giving them something tangible – whether a painting or pieces of jewelry – provide a necessary level of satisfaction? Or is it just a cheap trick to take a smudge or two off a celebrity’s checkered reputation?
Spring fashion roundups from magazines like Glamour are supposed to present bold concepts. Can you imagine flipping through the volumes of ads if all that passed as editorial filler were tired old stories about preppie favorites? Or just another batch of celebrity wardrobe “don’t”s? Nope. You need inspiration. And ideas. Plus the common sense to know when too much isn't enough.
Forty years after the invention of the cellular telephone, technological advances continue to allow people to do things that, these days, strain the brains of their older siblings, not to mention those of parents or grandparents. And many of the newest high-tech developments include wearable items, some promising the capability of being directly applied to one’s body. Which leaves practically no form of technological breakthrough beyond the realm of possibility.
With more and more people determined to keep to dietary restrictions, it makes business sense for stores and restaurants to do whatever it takes to meet those needs. Restaurants, in particular, can’t simply rely on atmosphere or speed of service to keep their customers. Now more than ever, it’s critically important for foodies to pay attention to the message they’re sending as much as to the products they’re selling.
Most people have been through enough cycles of common illnesses to know which remedies should ease their symptoms. And the amount of available medical knowledge online makes treatments like home remedies seem a better alternative to prescription or even over-the-counter drugs. Except when they aren't. Have more and more people lost faith in using pharmaceuticals? Or is the home remedy movement destined to die out?
Are rule-breaking celebrities – like those defiantly under-clad women at the 2013 Grammys -- just drumming up publicity by upholding the entertainer’s privilege of behaving badly? Or is there a deeper motive at play, like hoping to influence a significant shift in ordinary Americans’ morés? If so, how will celebrities’ actions affect their overall standing with the public?
The recent European Union decision to ban imports of all animal tested cosmetics has the rest of the world wondering whether other major players – including the U.S. – will follow suit. Is it only a matter of time before the ban catches on in those countries? Or will it take a serious impact on sales to convince the pair of economic heavyweights to see the light?
Products that “sell themselves” rarely need anyone to know that a famous person likes them, too. Can celebrity endorsements of products help to mitigate a lack of scientific evidence? Or are there other factors at work that have the effect of popularizing products of little or questionable value?