Ina Fried

Recent Posts by Ina Fried

How I Spent My Last 12,000 Won on a Hamburger-Shaped iPhone Case

With just moments to go before boarding my flight from Seoul to Beijing, I had 12,000 Korean won (about $11) left, and it was buring a hole in my pocket.

I was surrounded primarily by overpriced duty-free shops, which, annoyingly, only took U.S. dollars. Thankfully, there was an Internet cafe that had a handful of goods for sale, including one or two tech products. There were a few USB drives, but who needs another one of those?

Then I saw it — an iPhone 4 case shaped like a hamburger bun. Turns out it was originally priced at 20,000 won, but had been marked down to 10,000. Sold!

Then, with the remainder, I made it a combo, buying a real-life Coca-Cola light (what we in the States know as my beloved Diet Coke).

And with that, I bid Seoul a fond farewell.

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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work