Smartphone app lets you boycott with your wallet

May 15, 2013

Technology

KochApp1The hard rock group AC/DC was definitely on to something with its hit song, “Moneytalks.”

Next time you’re at the store, consider what big interests and corporations are behind your favorite dental floss or skinny jeans.

According to Forbes.com, at a Netroots Nation gathering  last year, Microsoft programmer turned congressional candidate Darcy Burner unveiled a smartphone application that scans bar codes of popular products and lets shoppers trace its corporate and financial roots.

Forbes.com reported:

Burner figured the average supermarket shopper had no idea that buying Brawny paper towels, Angel Soft toilet paper or Dixie cups meant contributing cash to Koch Industries through its subsidiary Georgia-Pacific. Similarly, purchasing a pair of yoga pants containing Lycra or a Stainmaster carpet meant indirectly handing the Kochs your money (Koch Industries bought Invista, one of the world’s largest fiber and textiles companies, in 2004 from DuPont).

The article goes on to say that Buycott.com (as in boycott) was recently launched by Los Angeles developer Ivan Pardo. The app is available through the iTunes App store and Google Play.

You can scan the barcode on any product and the free app will trace its ownership all the way to its top corporate parent company, including conglomerates like Koch Industries.

Given that billionaire industrialists David and Charles Koch have become nightly punching bags for liberal punditry thanks to their backing of many conservative Republican causes then maybe its time for right wing, Tea Party activists to take advantage of this technology development for themselves.

Maybe Glenn Beck or the American Family Association will develop an app that will reveal companies and products that support gay marriage, gun control or (gasp) global warming.

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About Stephen McDill

Stephen McDill joined the Mississippi Business Journal in 2008 after working in radio and television. He is a graduate of Belhaven University and has won awards for his writing and photojournalism from the Associated Press and Mississippi Press Association.

View all posts by Stephen McDill

3 Responses to “Smartphone app lets you boycott with your wallet”

  1. Caroline Pugh Says:

    “lets” in headline

  2. Rick Jones Says:

    Do I detect a bit of bias in the last couple of paragraphs?

    Oh yes, please clean up your word usage and syntax. You’re supposed to be educated.

    Yes, bias in my remarks.

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