Earth Day brings a fresh flood of ideas for shopping our way to sustainability
What do metal roofing, amaranth and online yoga lessons have in common?
They’re offerings so fabulously eco-friendly, in the eyes of various pitchmen and women, that surely an environment-minded journalist would want to feature them in an Earth Day story.
And so I will, though perhaps not in the hoped-for fashion.
As these emails piled up over the last few weeks, I thought back a year to my conversation with the conservationist writer Scott Russell Sanders . We talked about his notions of voluntary simplicity and his wry suggestion that we might reframe our consumption habits with a slight shift of language:
As a first step in that direction, let us quit using the word “consumer” for a season and use instead the close synonym, “devourer.” Thus, the Office of Consumer Affairs would become the Office of Devourer Affairs. In schools, the study of consumer science, which used to be called home economics, would become devourer science. Savvy shoppers would subscribe to Devourer Reports . Pollsters would conduct devourer surveys. Newspapers would track the ups and downs of the devourer price index.
This April I'm catching up on writings by the environmentalist contrarian David Owen, including his 2011 book “ The Conundrum ," subtitled, "How Scientific Innovation, Increased Efficiency, and Good Intentions Can Make Our Energy and Climate Problems Worse.
Reselling Used Apps?
In a recent decision, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) held that the resale of used software generally cannot be excluded in licence terms. The judgment, which aimed at the resale of used business software, may also affect the app market.
Smartphone and tablet users are used to all these little helpers easing their lives. Whether used to update the family photo album, to escape "real life" by playing some fun computer games or to read and revise documents for work, apps have become an integral part of our "smart" world.What if a user does not want to use an app anymore?
Once purchased, apps usually cannot be returned for a refund. However, one could consider selling it to someone who would be happy to use it for a reduced price. Given the usually low purchase prices of apps, this might not be a realistic scenario.
But what about platform switchers? If someone intends to give up his iPad and switch to an Android- or Windows-based tablet, he might indeed be interested in receiving at least some money for selling the comprehensive collection of apps purchased over the years. This brings up various questions about the legal admissibility and technical feasibility of such used-app sales.