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weddingYet for the retailers themselves, fast fashion can be more of a mixed bag. The business model boasts incredible unit-level economics — stores cost little to open, and the inventory turns over incredibly fast, with new merchandise brought in weekly or even daily. Yet, with its focus on low prices, the model also encourages consumers to be more loyal to price than brand or shop, leading to a race to the bottom in which retailers must constantly lower prices — and see their margins reduced.

There’s also the question of where these cheap goods come from and under what conditions, and by whom, they’re manufactured. In the U.S., where consumers buy on average 64 new items of clothing each year, the fast fashion industry has come under scrutiny and been the subject of books such as Elizabeth Cline’s 2012 exposé, “Overdressed: The Shockingly High Cost of Cheap Fashion,” which chronicles the possible environmental and social damage fast fashion can cause.

May the cheapest skirt win.

For existing Australian retailers, there is a more immediate kind of damage to keep an eye on. H&M will compete directly with privately owned retailers such as Ice and Cotton On, and also with the likes of Country Road (ASX: CTY), as H&M offers similar office-appropriate outfits at far lower prices.

H&M stores also poses a threat to Premier Investments (ASX: PMV) which has lately seen success with its fast-fashion concepts Dotti and Portmans. That’s to say nothing of older, legacy retailers such as David Jones (ASX: DJS) and Myer (ASX: MYR).

If history repeats itself, and H&M performs as well as it has in other markets, these retailers are right to be shaking in their platform studded booties.

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Communications

Mass. court: Abuse law can apply to online dating.

Massachusetts’ highest court on Wednesday ruled that substantive dating relationships developed and maintained using instant messaging, Skype, emails and other electronic communications are subject to the state’s domestic abuse laws.

The Supreme Judicial Court made the ruling in overturning a restraining order against a British man who was 24 when he developed a relationship with a 16-year-old Massachusetts girl after she visited London in 2011.

The court said Gregory James Compton was not a threat to the girl, in overturning the restraining order the girl’s father had obtained against Compton under the state’s domestic abuse law.Mistreatment stemming from relationships formed online and through other means of electronic communications are not specifically identified in Massachusetts’ domestic abuse law.

In its decision posted online, the court said its ruling “reflects the changing nature of relationships and, specifically, the fact that an increasing number of relationships, including ones involving teenagers, are being conducted electronically.”

Compton used real-time electronic communications to maintain the relationship with the teen after she returned home, professing his love for her, discussing the age of consent for sex and planning a trip to Massachusetts for a “sneaky sleepover” while he was in town. He also talked about having a conversation in his hotel room “with somthing gd in our hands,” an apparent reference to drinking alcohol.

The high court, on its own initiative, took the case from a lower court. Its ruling Wednesday said the domestic abuse law “must be interpreted to protect all who are in a substantive dating relationship from abuse, regardless of whether the relationship was developed or conducted by the use of technology.”

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Proposal

Fil-Am wins in US reality TV dating game show ‘The Bachelor’.

A Filipino-American woman emerged as the winner of the 17th season of the US reality television dating game show “The Bachelor” when she won the heart of the man who was looking for a girlfriend.
An article on Asian Journal said 26-year-old half-Filipina Catherine Ligaya Mejia Giudici accepted the proposal of Sean Lowe, and bested 25 other girls for the way to his heart.Giudici is a graphic designer and blogger from Seattle, Washington.The article noted that she is the daughter of one of the trustees of the Filipino-American National Historical Society in Seattle, Cynthia Mejia-Giudici.

On the other hand, her father, Carey “Trip” Guidici, is a journalist of Scottish and Swiss-Italian descent who was also a former editor-in-chief of Northwest Asia Week.
An estimated 10 million viewers watched Giudici accept Lowe’s proposal before they climbed “atop an elephant under a Thailand sunset” during the “The Bachelor” two-hour season finale on Monday.

“I miss you every time we have to say goodbye. I don’t want to say goodbye anymore,” Texas insurance agent Lowe, 28, said during his proposal to Giudici.He also said he and Giudici plan to have a televised wedding though he said there is still no definite date for their wedding.
“A marriage follows a proposal. We don’t have a date yet but we have decided that it would be cool since our relationship started and cultivated on a TV show we’ll have our wedding on a TV show. ABC will cover the wedding,” Lowe said.
Entertainment site E! Online also came out with some trivia about Giudici in an article, noting that the “The Bachelor” winner is “not creative,” a writer aside from being a graphic designer; vegetarian, and athletic.
The story noted Giudici’s explanation on the claims that she is “not creative.

“Usually when someone claims to be creative, the term loses a bit of its value. I won’t say I am creative because that is for you to judge. But I will say that I like to create,” she said.Giudici also writes a weekly column for Seattleite.com called “Meatless Mondays,” in which she gives recommendations about restaurants that serve good vegan food.

Her being a vegetarian was already noted in the show, but the reason she chose the lifestyle was because of a trip to Kenya in Africa, where she ate “copious amounts of exotic—and not so exotic—meat on a trip to Kenya” that afterwards left her “craving anything and everything without a face.”Lastly, running more than nine miles is apparently no sweat for Giudici, who earlier this month ran the Seattle Hot Chocolate 15K in 1 hour, 36 minutes, and 16 seconds.

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