Next generation companies don't just cater to existing markets, they create new ones - and they pay Henry Maddox top dollar to show them how. Maddox uses sophisticated marketing strategies to break apart large markets into smaller, more profitable, consumption hungry ones. Combined with modern data mining (known as big data), these techniques allow companies to not only profit from consumers, but control them.
But when Henry is forced to face how his techniques affect real people, he realizes he has inadvertently given corporations the power to destroy society for their own ends. The Curtain explores the effect that increasingly sophisticated data manipulation has on our communities, families, and daily lives.
In an age of digital distractions, who remembers the transcendent morality that has made past civilizations prosper? When corporations have the technology and motive to pull people apart, what keeps us together?
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Thought provoking and educational thriller
I found the book to be an extremely well written first novel and I congratulate Mr. Ord on his accomplishment. I particularly enjoyed The Curtain because it was educational and serves as a warning beacon to families everywhere.
The Curtain is really an expose on the social fracturing perpetrated on the basic unit of society, the family, by big business. This fracturing is engineered through the exploitation of data accumulated through seemingly innocuous formats such as social networking and gaming.
Mr. Ord points out that it is really to the benefit of business to have dysfunctional families. For example, he points out that a home that is ravaged by divorce results in 2 consumer households instead of one, both of which require more goods and services than before...thus businesses win when the family crumbles.As I progressed through The Curtain, I found myself thinking to myself, "I hope this isn't really happening in today's world". I believe that it really is.
The Curtain is a socially timely book. With all the political scandals that are occurring regarding invasion of privacy and controversies surrounding data mining, I found The Curtain to be very relevant in today's world. The Curtain does offer some suggestions on how the consumer (and families) can fight back. Read the book to find out what those things are!
The Curtain was a refreshing read because of its lack of vulgarity. This is a principle driven book, The ideas that act as an impetus to the main character's actions run counter-culture to the "what's in it for me" mentality of today's society. Patrick Ord made many points through his characters that left me thinking long after I finished the book. Because of this book I am a more informed consumer and will alter my online habits accordingly.
Couldn't finish it
A different story line, and a different narrator who could keep the characters straight.
Less lecturing about marketing practices, and less preaching about religion
I felt like it was trying to be like Ayn Rand's "The Fountainhead." It failed miserably.
- Pat Sibley