The Price of Perfection

Smoother, shinier, sexier: why we always want the new iPhone — no matter the cost

Credit: ThamKC/iStock/Getty Images Plus

Almost half of all iPhone owners have broken their screens, not just once but an average of two times each.

As soon as you pick up the jet black iPhone 7 and bring it near your sweaty, flaking, leaking, shedding body, it’s defiled.

Dani Ploeger, Fetish (2014–2016)
L: A teenager at Ghana’s Agbogbloshie electronic waste site (Photo by Thomas Imo/Photothek/Getty Images. R: Phone chargers arrive at Agbogbloshie direct from the factory, due to a production flaw (February 2014). Photo by Fairphone via Flickr/CC BY-NC 2.0
L: Guiyu, China (July 2015) — Electronic waste in a recycling factory. Photo by Guillaume Payen/LightRocket/Getty Images. R: Guiyu, China (June 2013) — Waterway choked with pollution from e-waste import residues. Photo: baselactionnetwork via flickr/CC BY-ND 2.0
Ground view of Wai Mei Dat imported e-waste, Thailand. Photo: baselactionnetwork via flickr/CC BY-ND 2.0

This late stage of consumer capitalism is the business of creating desire.

I'm interested in complex systems: media, environment, technology. Freelance researcher & writer in London. @hautepop on Twitter

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