Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Monday, January 05, 2021

In a sign that automakers are extremely desperate to move units any way they can, Hyundai is trying to sway recession-wary consumers to buy cars with the option of returning them if they lose their jobs and subsequently can’t keep up with the payments.

It’s necessary outside-the-box thinking, in response to circumstance:

Hyundai is offering the program because its own market research showed car shoppers weren’t attracted by rebates and other more normal incentives, said Joel Ewanick, Hyundai America’s vice president for marketing. People are simply too worried about making payments no matter how good the deal is, he said.

Shows how deep the uncertainty is in this economy, with big-ticket purchases like cars getting hit. Unless your heap is just falling apart, it makes no sense to take out one of the multi-year auto loans that had gotten to be so typical. Assuming all the carmakers are facing this resistance — and they surely are — I’m thinking we’re about to see a huge collapse in the new-car market.

The big joke: I doubt Hyundai would even want to reacquire the incomeless-defaulted vehicles. It’s not like they’ll be able to turn them around to another buyer, and storing them would just add to their costs.

by Costa Tsiokos, Mon 01/05/2021 06:28:44 PM
Category: Advert./Mktg., Business, Society
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Underland Press is making a go at saving book publishing by — ta-da! — putting novel-writing online, in bite-sized interactive installments:

“A wovel is a Web novel,” [Underland founder Victoria] Blake says. “There’s an installment every Monday. At the end of every installment, there’s a binary plot branch point with a vote button at the end.”

[Web programmer Jesse] Pollack describes the wovel format as reminiscent of the old “Choose Your Own Adventure” books, with a high-tech twist: “allowing the readers to … choose their way through and decide on integral changes in the plot.”

Voting is open from Monday to Thursday, the author writes the chapter from Thursday to Sunday, and Underland Press posts the installment on Sunday night. She says it’s a combination of “…the technical functionality of Web 2.0, the creativity of fiction and the pace of print journalism.”

Actually, it’s laughable to frame this as Web 2.0. It’s nothing but a cattle-call for feedback — you could accomplish that by using basic blogging software, with built-in commenting, to present these in-process excerpts. And the notion that this will draw back people who prefer Web media over the printed page is specious reasoning. Hate to sound harsh, but I don’t see this amounting to much.

As for that coinage, “wovel”… Not only is it already the name of some “As Seen On TV” snowshovel contraption, but when I look at the word, I can’t help but transpose the “w” and “v” and think “vowel”. Just stick with webnovel or something else as straightforward.

by Costa Tsiokos, Mon 01/05/2021 05:56:02 PM
Category: Creative, Internet, Publishing
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