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The Light Bulb Conspiracy: Once upon a time..... products were made to last. Then, at the beginning of the 1920s, a group of businessmen were struck by the following insight: 'A product that refuses to wear out is a tragedy of business' (1928). Thus Planned Obsolescence was born. Shortly after, the first worldwide cartel was set up expressly to reduce the life span of the incandescent light bulb, a symbol for innovation and bright new ideas, and the first official victim of Planned Obsolescence. During the 1950s, with the birth of the consumer society, the concept took on a whole new meaning, as explained by flamboyant designer Brooks Stevens: 'Planned Obsolescence, the desire to own something a little newer, a little better, a little sooner than is necessary...'. The growth society flourished, everybody had everything, the waste was piling up (preferably far away in illegal dumps in the Third World) - until consumers started rebelling... Can the modern growth society survive without Planned Obsolescence? Did the eternal light bulb ever exist? How can a tiny chip 'kill' a product? How did two artists from New York manage to extend the lives of millions of iPods? Is Planned Obsolescence itself becoming obsolete?

  • Currently 4.47/5
(163 votes)
Released: November 30, 2010
Runtime: 75 mins
Genres: Documentary
Countries: France Spain
Director: Cosima Dannoritzer
Actors: Alec Guinness Fredric March Mildred Dunnock Richard Jones

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The Light Bulb Conspiracy Comments

Posted by BoogerFlicker 1 month ago
100% Useful

Great documentary for manufacturing studies!!!... like mine.

Posted by nicobjorn 10 months ago
100% Useful

Everyone should watch this ...not many will sadly 10/10

Posted by keyokey 11 months ago
100% Useful

I bet our supervisor(s) manager(s) will (if they haven't already) tell us to remove the company stickers logos from our replaced electronics to avoid liability.

Posted by ivourbane 1 year, 1 month ago
100% Useful

this is the kind of film everyone should watch. i mean, i think most of us are at least loosely aware of the concept of PLANNED OBSOLESCENCE but it is interesting to see the development of it and the impact on the third world. as for the film itself, there were points where i got a little bored while it delivered its message, then points where i was engaged, interested, its not exactly a masterpiece of film making but it was all about the info. loved the section on the fifties and the birth of design consumerism. i always remember all those weird and wonderful designs and lifestyle propaganda commercials, ha, one guy was mainly behind it all. bizarre story about the birthday party for the lightbulb being 100. and the great printer victory at the end.. hurrah

Posted by ChokingChicken 1 year, 2 months ago
100% Useful

One word: Iphone

Posted by HANDSLIDE 1 year, 2 months ago
100% Useful

Chaillet invented a light bulb which has burned for over 100 years 24/7 still to this day, promoted in a California firehouse. Clever, are those with selfish 'ideals'.

Posted by MSJewelryAU 1 year, 4 months ago
100% Useful

Very interesting.I'll never look at a product quite the same. 8/10

Posted by SimplyJake 1 year, 4 months ago
100% Useful

A very informative eye opener. The documentary could have been put together better from a cinematic perspective, but the content is amazing. The first world is depressing. 10/10

Posted by SourDee 1 year, 9 months ago
100% Useful

Really good watch. 5/5

Posted by jofthew 1 year, 9 months ago
100% Useful

Very good documentary.I would hope this makes us all think about how essential it is to make use of our intellect and look more closely at our culture and industry,but not simply that alone,but the arguments and theories pertaining to what is wrong that are not based on facts but assumptions.Our world is so over saturated with expert opinions and theories it is difficult to determine what is the truth from the propaganda.It is worth taking the time to investigate for ourselves,it is too important to do otherwise.

Posted by madkat 1 year, 11 months ago
100% Useful

wow. really good doc!

Posted by C46R1 1 year, 11 months ago ( Edited 1 year, 11 months ago )
100% Useful

interesting doc, apart from the annoying bits which u dno wt their saying.. 3/5

Posted by DissentientAmy 2 years, 11 months ago
100% Useful

This documentary is informative and interesting without being too preachy. However, all the friends I have who think of themselves as eco warriors of sorts always have brand new cell phones and all the latest gadgets. So the end of this consumerism, or at least the dawn of a new more gentle consumerism, begins with the individual much more than it begins with the corporations. 3.5/5 stars from me for an interesting subject.

Posted by universalb 3 years, 1 month ago
100% Useful

Great doc. Gives an perspective on how the econ works and how greedy business can get. Very interesting. 10/10

Posted by StoneR_85 3 years, 1 month ago
100% Useful

apart from the annoying parts with no subs it was pretty good

Posted by eggnuts88 3 years, 1 month ago
100% Useful

thx dupytoilet for eng link

Posted by dupystoilet 3 years, 1 month ago
100% Useful

there is a link with english subs right here

Posted by V0903 3 years, 1 month ago
100% Useful

Very informative..wish I had this info years ago.

Posted by joeyross1986 1 year, 8 months ago
88% Useful

Woah. I'm saddened to see these 3rd world countries having to deal with all our crap.

Posted by aledrees 1 year, 2 months ago
75% Useful

Very informative and correct. PLANNED OBSOLESCENCE or CREATIVE DESTRUCTION is killing 3rd world countries all in the name of keeping up with the Joneses... I hope thew Joneses all get aids and die.

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