Design Dispatch

California Enacts Net Neutrality Laws, and Other News

Our daily look at the world through the lens of design.

Net neutrality supporters rally in New York City on December 7, 2017

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California gets go-ahead to enact its net neutrality laws. 

In a loss for internet providers and lobbyists for the Trump administration, a judge ruled that California can start enforcing the net neutrality laws it passed a couple years ago. The law prohibits internet service providers from blocking or restricting web traffic.  

Biden repeals Trump’s classical architecture order. 

Last year Trump sent shockwaves across the architecture community with his “make federal buildings beautiful again” executive order. Since January 20th, President Biden has been hastily revoking and undoing many of Trump’s blunders, including his executive order making classical architecture the “preferred and default style” for all updated and future federal buildings. On February 24th, President Biden rescinded that order. Now what?

Elisabeth Bonamy in Franck Davidovici's "Fait d'Hiver" ad campaign for Naf Naf

A French appeals court has found Jeff Koons guilty of copyright infringement again.

Uh oh, he’s at it again. Jeff Koons and the Centre Pompidou have lost an appeals case against photographer Franck Davidovici, who first accused the artist in 2014 of plagiarizing his well-known 1985 advertising campaign for the French fashion brand Naf Naf. Koons’s 1988 sculpture Fait d’hiver depicts a woman lying in snow next to a pig wearing a ring of roses and a barrel around its neck, and penguins standing nearby. Davidovici’s photo similarly shows a female model reclining in snow with a pig (which is the Naf Naf mascot), also wearing a small barrel around his neck.

The January 2021 Architecture Billings Index sinks even further.

Following straight declines since March of 2020 amid the coronavirus pandemic, the AIA’s Architecture Billings Index (ABI) figures for January 2021 show the trend continued into this year. The ABI—a monthly national composite of industry health with figures over 50 representing growth from the month before and under 50 representing decline—moved from 42.3 in December of 2020 to 44.9 in January of 2021. 

Max Mara's ready-to-wear Fall 2021 collection preview

Max Mara’s 70th anniversary collection pays tribute to women’s empowerment.

Creative director Ian Griffiths honored the brand’s roots with a homage to classics and British culture—one of the fashion house’s perennial obsessions. This festive collection symbolizes the attention and care that Max Mara has always given to real women, to those who prefer to dress in beautiful coats and tailored suits rather than adorning themselves in ostentatious jewelry.

GameStop stock is surging again. Is an ice cream cone the reason?

Just a few weeks ago, the stock went haywire, sending the price of the shares up 1,600 per cent. Just like then, nothing has happened to GameStop itself. It actually continues to undergo trouble as a company: the move away from hard copies of games and the pandemic (but not in any particularly new way). But also like then, the surge has less to do with the company than the stock itself.

The packaging of Matsukiyo toilet paper roll does not indicate or promote the basic product functions: absorbency, touch, etc

Today’s attractive distractions:

Playful toilet paper from Japan designed to ease buying embarrassment.

Sweatpants are not peak comfort. Fleece trousers are.

A new seaweed-based supplement could save the planet.

This artist paints with cow dung in honor Bavaria’s Rural Heritage.

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