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Sunday, March 29, 2015

When apps are driven by the market, there’s only one winner. It’s not you …

They govern more and more of our lives and the information they accumulate is supposed to empower us. But it’s the market that is the ultimate beneficiary


America’s three obsessions – technology, fitness and finance – have finally converged in FitCoin, a new app that allows users to monetise their visits to the gym. The mechanism is simple: by integrating with popular activity trackers and wearables, the app converts our heartbeats into a digital currency. FitCoin’s founders hope that, much like its older sibling, bitcoin, this currency can be used to buy exclusive goods from partners such as Adidas and lower your insurance payments.


FitCoin might fail but the principle behind it is indicative of the broader transformation of social life under conditions of permanent connectivity and instant commodification: what was previously done for pleasure or merely to conform to social norms is now firmly guided by the logic of the market. The other logics don’t disappear but they become secondary to the monetary incentive.


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from Network Front | The Guardian http://ift.tt/19cMCkGRead More


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