‘CyberFashion’ is the newest way to signify to the masses that you are a dead-set moron.
We are not talking about the fashion trends of CyberPunk or clothing influenced by the digital age. This is not about seeing if you can stitch keyboards onto your jacket or embed the latest government tracking app in the hemline – nor is it a foray into the realms of wearable technology.
CyberFashion is the sale of virtual clothing which you wear digitally imposed over your social media selfies.
Major fashion houses Louis Vuitton, Carlings, and The Fabricant have worked out that they can charge a fortune for these digital creations, with one dress priced (and sold!) for $9,500 USD. Carlings has been at this for a while. In 2019 their ‘Last Statement T-Shirt’ allowed people to super-impose text via a filter onto clothing in their Facebook and Instagram selfies, helping users to keep up with the latest political slogans.
Living in a free market economy grants us front row seats to human oddity. There is a genuine desire to purchase these digital products and far be it from anyone to interfere with people looking for ways to be parted from their money.
But what are they actually buying?
The digital world is merely a projection of humanity, not a reflection of real achievement. It is the natural conclusion of a generation that values ‘virtue signalling’ over physical hard work. Organisations like the World Economic Forum are encouraging a digital social shift because humans who are frightened of the outside world and reluctant to interact with each other are much easier to control. It is essentially an exaggeration of the political divide between city and country – except now we will be divided by those who prefer the digital world over the real one.
The government is making it more difficult for citizens to keep themselves quarantined from this digital incursion with the introduction of QR codes and stalking apps implemented in the name of ‘safety’. Where once governments required a warrant to spy on people, they now use emergency mandates. These have already been abused by law enforcement accessing data which was meant to be protected on medical grounds.
Digital subservience is an active part of the World Economic Forum’s feared Fourth Industrial Revolution and includes other demands you might be familiar with, such as the erasure of physical cash and government legislated ‘work from home’ policies. None of this is very comforting considering part of this digital utopia includes a catastrophic digital pandemic that will help ‘re-shape human civilisation’.
On its own, CyberFashion seems like a laughable aside to the craziness of 2021, but we have to remember that all of these ideas are part of a general direction that we are being pushed in. Given this, it is no surprise to find the usual slogans used throughout CyberFashion’s promotional material.
It has been heralded as the ultimate step in ‘sustainable living’ in a world of wasteful consumerism – in other words, a way to destroy brick and mortar stores that employ real people. Its supporters are quick to point out that CyberFashion is genderless and sizeless – it is also non-existent, which is a bit of a problem if your wardrobe is stored on your phone.
Despite all its eco-promises, it feels like CyberFashion is about to be used as an excuse to ramp up the price of real fashion. If CyberFashion is ‘virtuous’ then actual clothes are bad. ‘Bad’ things have a habit of attracting green taxes, especially if fashion houses are forced to uproot from China and find a quieter geopolitical home.
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MilleWorld published an article on the subject which states:
‘It’s no secret: Gen Z is the most eco-conscious generation yet. And they’re today’s focus consumer, so it was only a matter of time before sustainability moved from an ethical goal to a marketing tool.
“Between greenwashing and ‘sustainable’ collections from fast fashion brands, it’s impossible to say that the fashion industry is actually making progress. With production, deliveries, and packaging in the equation, even today’s most environmentally-friendly brands leave a significant carbon footprint.
“Enter Tribute Brand: a clothing label that doesn’t actually sell clothing. Bear with us, this could be fashion’s answer to a sustainable future. You can’t touch it, there’s no physical production, nor deliveries with Tribute.”
This is the same Gen Z that get dropped off to Climate Change protests by their mums in Range Rovers. The same Gen Z that are too lazy to walk to the local cafe or shop for food and so use an app to order an Uber-Slave to pick it up for them. Gen Z who toss away their phones every year for an updated version and wouldn’t survive five minutes without the server farms keeping their digital lives afloat.
Like Bruce Willis in the science fiction movie Surrogates, we are in danger of finding ourselves replacing the real world with a digital life. While the breathing carbon units sit at home, dressed in rags and fused to their sofas – their digital selves are lavished in expensive outfits and paraded around in a virtual nirvana, living a lie. These human masks are increasing the distance between what humanity thinks it is versus what it actually looks like.
To be honest, this has been a long time coming.
Way back in the realm of early video games, fashion items known as ‘skins’ could be unlocked upon the completion of levels to ‘dress’ your video game protagonist. It was a bit of fun, mostly created by developers who wanted to see famous stars like Lara Croft kick arse in an evening dress. Humans love earning rewards. Back then there were no ‘in game purchases’ so this was a way of building additional fun into existing games.
Digital rewards were monetized by social media. Large platforms like LiveJournal allowed users to buy digital gifts for each other (which amounted to an image). Pretty soon, the entire digital landscape was full of transactions, whether you were buying storage space, layout skins, gifts, or perks. At the same time, games progressed to smart phones and made character outfits a purchase rather than a reward. The net result was the normalisation of exchanging real money for in-game purely digital content.
This is no small thing. The mobile phone gaming market clocked in at $77 billion USD in 2020. 22% of this figure comes from the purchase of in-game currency. Another 22% is attributed to in-game items, and 8% for crates of digital items. The expected 2026 figure for character skins (clothes) is $50 billion USD.
Environmental charity ‘Hubbub’ released a survey claiming that 41% of people aged 18-25 feel pressure to wear a different outfit each time they go out while 1 in 6 don’t feel they can wear an outfit again once it has been seen on social media. This sounds like a case of extremely bad parenting rather than justification for launching an age of CyberFashion. The apparently limitless obsession with Fast Fashion, social media influencers, and digital appearance is a symptom of systemic narcissism. Kids are putting themselves into debt using clothing to make up for their lack of character.
Honestly, we should let them. The only way Gen Z are going to wake up from this nightmare is if fashion empires swindle them out of their money. Like the foolish emperor, they will find themselves walking down the street with no clothes.
It is at this point we can remind them of the prophecy from the World Economic Forum: “You will own nothing and be happier for it…”
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Alexandra Marshall (@ellymelly on social media) writes on liberty, philosophy and geopolitics. You can find her on Twitter or read her articles over at her blog. Elly is also an AI database designer for the retail industry, contributor to multiple online journals and a Young Ambassador with Australians for Constitutional Monarchy.
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