The power and ambition of the giants of the digital economy is astonishing-Amazon has just announced the purchase of the upmarket grocery chain Whole Foods for $l3.5bn,but two years ago Facebook paid even more than that to acquire the WhatsApp messaging service, which doesn't have any physical product at all. What WhatsApp offered Facebook was an intricate and finely detailed web of its users' friendships and social lives.
Facebook promised the European commission then that it would not link phone numbers to Facebook identities, but it broke the promise almost as soon as the deal went through. Even without knowing what was in the messages, the knowledge of who sent them and to whom was enormously revealing and still could be. What political journalist, what party whip, would not want to know the makeup of the WhatsApp groups in which Therea May's enemies are currently plotting? It may be that the value of Whole Foods to Amazon is not so much the 460 shops it owns, but the records of which customers have purchased what.
Competition law appears to be the only way to address these imbalances of power. But it is clumsy. For one thing, it is very slow compared to the pace of Change within the digital economy. By the time a problem has been addressed and remedied it may have vanished in the marketplace, to be replaced by new abuses of power. But there is a deeper conceptual problem, too. Competition law as presently interpreted deals with financial disadvantage to consumers and this is not obvious when the users of these services don't pay for them. The users of their Services are not their customers. That would be the people who buy advertising from them-and Facebook and Google, the two virtual giants, dominate digital advertising to the disadvantage of all other media and entertainment companies.
The product they're selling is data, and we, the users, convert our lives to date for the benefit of the digital giants. Just as some ants farm the bugs called aphids for the honeydew the produce when they feed, so Google farms us for the data that our digital lives yield. Ants keep predatory insects away from where their aphids feed; Gmail keeps the spamme out of our inboxes. It doesn't feel like a human or democratic relationship, even if both sides benefit.
31. According to Paragraph 1, Facebook acquired WhatsApp for its .
[A] digital products
[B] user information
[C] physical assets
[D] quality service
32. Linking phone numbers to Facebook identities may .
[A] worsen political disputes
[B] mess up customer records
[C] pose a risk to Facebook users
[D] mislead the European commission
33. According to the author, competition law .
[A] should sever the new market powers
[B] may worsen the economic imbalance
[C] should not provide just one legal solution
[D] cannot keep pace with the changing market
34. Competition law as presently interpreted can hardly protect Facebook users because .
[A] they are not defined as customers
[B] they are not financially reliable
[C] the services are generally digital
[D] the services are paid for by advertisers
35. The ants analogy is used to illustrate .
[A] a win-win business model between digital giants
[B] a typical competition pattern among digital giants
[C] the benefits provided for digital giants ’customers
[D] the relationship between digital giants and their users
Even in traditional offices，"the lingua franca of corporate America has gottenmuch more emotional and much more right-brained than it was 20 years ago，" said Ha rva rd Business School professor Nancy Koehn She sta rted spinning off examples."If you and I pa rachuted back to Fortune 500 companies in 1990，we would see much less frequent use of terms like Journey, mission,passion. There were goals，there were strategies，there were objectives，but we didn't talk about energy;we didn't talk about passion."
Koehn pointed out that this new era of corporate vocabula ry is very "team"-oriented-and not by coincidence."Let's not forget sDorts-in male-dominated corporate America，it's still a big deal. It's not explicitly conscious;it's the idea that I'm a coach，and you're my team，and we're in this togethec. There are lots and lots of CEOs in very different companies，but most think of themselves as coaches and this is their team and they want to win".
These terms a re also intended to infuse work with meaning-and，as Khu rana points out，increase allegiance to the firm."You have the importation of terminology that historically used to be associated with non-profit organizations and religious organizations：Terms like vision，values，passion，and purpose，"saidKhurana
This new focus on personal fulfillment can help keep employees motivated amid increasingly loud debates over work-life balance The "mommy wars" of the 1990s a re still going on today, prompting arguments about whywomen still can'thave it all and books like Sheryl Sandberg's Lean In，whose title has become abuzzword in its own right. Terms like unplug，offline，life-hack，bandwidth，andcapacity are all about setting boundaries between the office and the home But ifyour work is your "passion," you'II be more likely to devote yourself to it，even ifthat means going home for dinner and then working long after the kids are in bed
But this seems to be the irony of office speak：Everyone makes fun of it，butmanage rs love it，companies depend on it，and regular people willingly absorb itAs Nunberg said，"You can get people to think it's nonsense at the same timethat you buy into it." In a workplace that's fundamentally indiffe rent to your lifeand its meaning office speak can help you figu re out how you relate to yourwork-and how your work defines who you are
31. According to Nancy Koehn, office language has become________
[A]more e motional
32."team"-oriented corporate vocabulary is closely related to________
33.Khurana believes that the importation of terminology aims to________
[A]revive historical terms
[B]promote company image
[C]foster corporate cooperation
[D]strengthen employee loyalty
34.It can be inferred that Lean In_________
[A]voices for working women
[B]appeals to passionate workaholics
[C]triggers dcbates among mommies
[D]praises motivated employees
35.Which of the following statements is true about office speak?
[A]Managers admire it but avoid it
[B]Linguists believe it to be nonsense
[C]Companies find it to be fundamental
[D]Regular people mock it but accept it
Scientists have found that although we are prone to snap overreactions, if we take a moment and think about how we are likely to react, we can reduce or even eliminate the negative effects of our quick, hard-wired responses.
Snap decisions can be important defense mechanisms; if we are judging whether someone is dangerous, our brains and bodies are hard-wired to react very quickly, within milliseconds. But we need more time to assess other factors. To accurately tell whether someone is sociable, studies show, we need at least a minute, preferably five. It takes a while to judge complex aspects of personality, like neuroticism or open-mindedness.
But snap decisions in reaction to rapid stimuli aren’t exclusive to the interpersonal realm. Psychologists at the University of Toronto found that viewing a fast-food logo for just a few milliseconds primes us to read 20 percent faster, even though reading has little to do with eating. We unconsciously associate fast food with speed and impatience and carry those impulses into whatever else we’re doing, Subjects exposed to fast-food flashes also tend to think a musical piece lasts too long.
Yet we can reverse such influences. If we know we will overreact to consumer products or housing options when we see a happy face (one reason good sales representatives and real estate agents are always smiling), we can take a moment before buying. If we know female job screeners are more likely to reject attractive female applicants, we can help screeners understand their biases-or hire outside screeners.
John Gottman, the marriage expert, explains that we quickly “thin slice” information reliably only after we ground such snap reactions in “thick sliced” long-term study. When Dr. Gottman really wants to assess whether a couple will stay together, he invites them to his island retreat for a muck longer evaluation; two days, not two seconds.
Our ability to mute our hard-wired reactions by pausing is what differentiates us from animals: doge can think about the future only intermittently or for a few minutes. But historically we have spent about 12 percent of our days contemplating the longer term. Although technology might change the way we react, it hasn’t changed our nature. We still have the imaginative capacity to rise above temptation and reverse the high-speed trend.
31. The time needed in making decisions may____.
[A] vary according to the urgency of the situation
[B] prove the complexity of our brain reaction
[C] depend on the importance of the assessment
[D] predetermine the accuracy of our judgment
32. Our reaction to a fast-food logo shows that snao decisions____.
[A] can be associative
[B] are not unconscious
[C] can be dangerous
[D] are not impulsive
33. Toreverse the negative influences of snap decisions,we should____.
[A] trust our first impression
[B] do as people usually do
[C] think before we act
[D] ask for expert advice
34. John Gottman says that reliable snap reaction are based on____.
[A] critical assessment
[B]‘‘thin sliced ’’study
[C] sensible explanation
[D] adequate information
35. The author’s attitude toward reversing the high-speed trend is____.
When the government talks about infrastructure contributing to the economy the focus is usually on roads, railways, broadband and energy. Housing is seldom mentioned.
Why is that? To some extent the housing sector must shoulder the blame. We have not been good at communicating the real value that housing can contribute to economic growth. Then there is the scale of the typical housing project. It is hard to shove for attention among multibillion-pound infrastructure project, so it is inevitable that the attention is focused elsewhere. But perhaps the most significant reason is that the issue has always been so politically charged.
Nevertheless, the affordable housing situation is desperate. Waiting lists increase all the time and we are simply not building enough new homes.
The comprehensive spending review offers an opportunity for the government to help rectify this. It needs to put historical prejudices to one side and take some steps to address our urgent housing need.
There are some indications that it is preparing to do just that. The communities minister, Don Foster, has hinted that George Osborne, Chancellor of the Exchequer, may introduce more flexibility to the current cap on the amount that local authorities can borrow against their housing stock debt. Evidence shows that 60,000 extra new homes could be built over the next five years if the cap were lifted, increasing GDP by 0.6%.
Ministers should also look at creating greater certainty in the rental environment, which would have a significant impact on the ability of registered providers to fund new developments from revenues.
But it is not just down to the government. While these measures would be welcome in the short term, we must face up to the fact that the existing ?4.5bn programme of grants to fund new affordable housing, set to expire in 2015,is unlikely to be extended beyond then. The Labour party has recently announced that it will retain a large part of the coalition’s spending plans if returns to power. The housing sector needs to accept that we are very unlikely to ever return to era of large-scale public grants. We need to adjust to this changing climate.
36. The author believes that the housing sector__
[A] has attracted much attention
[B] involves certain political factors
[C] shoulders too much responsibility
[D] has lost its real value in economy
37. It can be learned that affordable housing has__
[A] increased its home supply
[B] offered spending opportunities
[C] suffered government biases
[D] disappointed the government
38. According to Paragraph 5,George Osborne may_______.
[A] allow greater government debt for housing
[B] stop local authorities from building homes
[C] prepare to reduce housing stock debt
[D] release a lifted GDP growth forecast
39.It can be inferred that a stable rental environment would_______.
[A]lower the costs of registered providers
[B]lessen the impact of government interference
[C]contribute to funding new developments
[D]relieve the ministers of responsibilities
40.The author believes that after 2015,the government may______.
[A]implement more policies to support housing
[B]review the need for large-scale public grants
[C]renew the affordable housing grants programme
[D]stop generous funding to the housing sector