The Dark Side of E-Commerce

In times of looming lockdowns and viral mutations, it's a safe bet that people have preferred to stay at home. By staying at home, we have brought the world out-there to in-here, to relieve building tensions and give ourselves some breathing space. We've accustomed ourselves to stay in our cozy cocoon; while running orders on our smartphones of course. 

With proper dissection, we unearth the belly underneath the neat one-day shipping. We notice the air-puffed plastic bags that come within the baggage but almost subconsciously push it under the carpet because we're so happy we got our 100% organic, vegan, cruelty free and no paraben soap! Duality indeed is a beautiful concept after all.

With everything seeming to be a double-edged sword, how we manage to comprehend the ramifications of each choice is often subjective to one's insight into the workings of the giant wheelhouse: e-commerce.

Of course, the convenience is unmatchable. But the side that is overlooked is that of the authenticity of the art- the origin of entity:

To find inspiration, artists go through a lot of work inward and outward by seeking and reaching out for the same. For the contrast that doesn't fit into each other's ecosystems, art isn't made for mass production. Art isn't about who sees what, or for being clear without context. It is about the creator, and his creation.

When we order something, we don't consciously order the packaging that comes along, or consciously dispose it. It's not just us, it's millions of us. And at such unconscious sleepwalking through decisions, we have led a polluting life.

It's not just the way we are in this whole mess, it's the big companies that take this change forward. The fact that a company charges 50 dollars more just for the right charger for that particular phone that comes in different packaging, often has a different delivery schedule and includes more plastic use than that if the same would've been in the design previously accepted as the norm. We can call it green-washing in this particular context because the said company has claimed that this "small" step has removed a considerable chunk of its carbon footprint, which of course is preposterous.

The world of advertising is always based on selling you the white lie that what you own and what you have is not good enough, and you really need to upgrade to this next big thing as soon as possible. In a proverbial context, the grass is greener on the other side, and that's the dark one.

In a culmination of capitalist practices, we look at some socialism as a resort. But for the first time in ages, it has come to the corniest of the companies to stand up and drive the change that makes tomorrow come alive. The only way to push sustainability to the mainstream has to be the capitalist way- with money flux and subsidies. It cannot anymore be about the government wishing and extending support, it is time for all the stakeholders in a functional ecosystem to work towards a common goal.


- Mani Varna from Wobh

The Dark Side of E-Commerce - Wobh