Megacorporation

Megacorporation, mega-corporation, or megacorp, a term popularized by William Gibson, derives from the combination of the prefix mega- with the word corporation. It has become widespread in cyberpunk literature. It refers to a corporation (normally fictional) that is a massive conglomerate (usually private), holding monopolistic or near-monopolistic control over multiple markets (thus exhibiting both a horizontal and a vertical monopoly). Megacorps are so powerful that they can ignore the law, possess their own heavily armed (often military-sized) private armies, be the operator of a privatized police force, hold "sovereign" territory, and even act as outright governments. They often exercise a large degree of control over their employees, taking the idea of "corporate culture" to an extreme. Such organizations as a staple of science fiction long predate cyberpunk, appearing in the works of writers such as Philip K. Dick (Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, 1968), Thea von Harbou (Metropolis, 1927), Robert A. Heinlein (Citizen of the Galaxy, 1957), Robert Asprin (The Cold Cash War, 1977), Andre Norton (the Solar Queen novels) and David Weber (the "Honorverse" novels). The explicit use of the term in the Traveller science fiction roleplaying game from 1977 predates Gibson's use of it.[12]

Vereenigde Oostindische Compagnie spiegelretourschip Amsterdam replica
Replica of an East Indiaman of the Dutch East India Company/United East India Company (VOC). The VOC is often considered to be the world's first true multinational corporation (or transnational corporation). It was a pioneering early model of the global corporation[1][2] and an exemplary historical transcontinental company-state.[3] In many respects, the VOC was possibly in fact the first historical model of the mega-corporation.[4][5][6][7][8][9][10][11] It was also in fact a proto-conglomerate company rather than a pure trading company or shipping company.

Real-life examples

Although the term itself arose out of science fiction, certain real-life corporations, such as colonial-era chartered companies and zaibatsu, have achieved or approached megacorporation status in various ways. The private Dutch East India Company, for example, operated 40 warships and had 10,000 private soldiers to monitor its farflung spice empire, while the British East India Company controlled a large colonial empire in the mid-19th century before the company was dissolved and its territories absorbed into the British Empire. The Hudson's Bay Company was once the world's largest landowner, exercising legal control and a trading monopoly on its territory known as Rupert's Land which consisted of 15% of the North American land mass.

Today many countries have competition laws (also known as antitrust laws) to prevent real-life corporations from having mega-corporation characteristics. On the other hand, some countries protect a certain industry deemed important by mandating that only a single company, usually state owned, can operate in it. An example of the latter is Saudi Arabia, which gains the majority of its government revenues through its mega-corporation Saudi Aramco.

See also

References

  1. ^ Bown, Stephen R.: Merchant Kings: When Companies Ruled the World, 1600–1900. (Thomas Dunne Books, 2009, ISBN 978-0312616113), p. 16
  2. ^ Capra, Fritjof; Mattei, Ugo: The Ecology of Law: Toward a Legal System in Tune with Nature and Community. (Berrett-Koehler Publishers, 2015, ISBN 978-1626562066), p. 63
  3. ^ Weststeijn, Arthur (2014), 'The VOC as a Company-State: Debating Seventeenth-Century Dutch Colonial Expansion,'. Itinerario 38(1): 13–34. doi:10.1017/S0165115314000035
  4. ^ Sayle, Murray (5 Apr 2001). "Japan goes Dutch". London Review of Books, Vol. 23 No. 7. Retrieved 8 August 2017.
  5. ^ Ames, Glenn J. (2008). The Globe Encompassed: The Age of European Discovery, 1500–1700. pp. 102–103.
  6. ^ Brook, Timothy: Vermeer's Hat: The Seventeenth Century and the Dawn of the Global World. (Bloomsbury Press, 2008, pp. 288, ISBN 978-1596915992)
  7. ^ Hanft, Adam (23 May 2010). "Google Is the New "CorporNation" - Half Company, Half Virtual Government". HuffingtonPost.com. Retrieved 23 May 2018. Adam Hanft: "A CorporNation's vast global influence enables it to function simultaneously in two realms: a for-profit company, and as a force that can shape the geopolitical landscape."
  8. ^ Phelan, Ben (7 Jan 2013). "Dutch East India Company: The World's First Multinational". PBS.org. Retrieved 8 August 2017.
  9. ^ Taylor, Bryan (6 Nov 2013). "The Rise and Fall of the Largest Corporation in History". BusinessInsider.com. Retrieved 8 August 2017.
  10. ^ Grenville, Stephen (3 November 2017). "The first global supply chain". Lowy Institute. Retrieved 18 August 2018.
  11. ^ Desjardins, Jeff (12 December 2017). "How today's tech giants compare to the massive companies of empires past". BusinessInsider.com. Retrieved 28 May 2018.
  12. ^ "Library Data (A-M) - Traveller". Traveller RPG Wiki. Retrieved 12 June 2017.
Barret Wallace

Barret Wallace (バレット・ウォーレス, Baretto Wōresu) is a player character in Square Enix's role-playing video game Final Fantasy VII. Created by character designer Tetsuya Nomura, he has since appeared in the CGI film sequel, Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children as well as other games and media in the Compilation of Final Fantasy VII series. As of Advent Children, Barret is voiced by Masahiro Kobayashi in Japanese and Beau Billingslea in English localizations.

Barret is first introduced in Final Fantasy VII as an eco-terrorist, leading the group AVALANCHE to bomb Mako reactors in the fictional city of Midgar, so as to avenge the losses dealt him by the megacorporation Shinra, the Planet's de facto world government, who operate under the pretense of saving the Planet. As the story progresses, Barret re-examines his efforts and focuses on pursuing the villain Sephiroth in an effort to protect the Planet and the future of his adopted daughter, Marlene. Elements of the Compilation of Final Fantasy VII would later expand upon his character, detailing the character's history before and after the events of the original game.

The first dark-skinned playable character in the Final Fantasy series, Barret's appearance and sometimes profane speech has been heavily compared to that of actor Mr. T, earning much praise, but also criticism and accusations of racism by some.

Corporate republic

A corporate republic is a theoretical form of government run primarily like a business, involving a board of directors and executives, in which all aspects of society are privatized by a single, or small groups of companies. The ultimate goal of this state is to increase the wealth of its shareholders, and the government acknowledges its status as a corporation. Utilities, including hospitals, schools, the military, and the police force, would be privatized. The social welfare function carried out by the state is instead carried out by corporations in the form of pensions and benefits to employees.

Corporate republics do not exist officially in the modern history. Modern competition laws and the development of modern nation-states help prevent such a company from gaining or being granted that amount of political power. Historical states, such as post-classical Florence and the East India Company, might be said to have been governed as corporate republics. Political scientists have also considered state socialist nations (criticised as state capitalist) to be forms of corporate republics, with the state assuming full control of all economic and political life and establishing a monopoly on everything within national boundaries - effectively making the state itself equatable to a giant corporation.Corporate republics are used in works of science fiction or political commentary as a warning of the perceived dangers of capitalism. In such works, they usually arise when one or more vastly powerful corporations depose a government either over an extended time period via regulatory capture or swiftly in a coup d'état.

Evil corporation

An evil corporation is a trope in popular culture that portrays a corporation as ignoring social responsibility in order to make money for its shareholders. According to Angela Allan writing in The Atlantic, the notion is "deeply embedded in the landscape of contemporary culture—populating films, novels, videogames, and more." The science fiction genre served as the initial background to portray corporations in this dystopian light. Evil corporations can be seen to represent the danger of combining capitalism with larger hubris.In real life, too, corporations have been accused of being evil. To guard against such accusations, Google adopted the official motto "Don't be evil", now used as part of the closing lines of the company's code of conduct. The company has been accused of violating this principle on several occasions, including with their now discontinued participation in a military drone AI program.The New Yorker wrote that "many food activists consider Monsanto (now Bayer) to be the definitively evil corporation". The Debate over Corporate Social Responsibility wrote, "For many consumers, Wal-Mart serves as the evil corporation prototype, but record numbers shop at the stores for low prices." In Japan, a committee of journalists and rights activists issues an annual "corporate raspberry award" known as Most Evil Corporation of the Year Award (also called the Black Company Award) to a company "with a culture of overwork, discrimination and harassment".

Farmed and Dangerous

Farmed and Dangerous is a four-part webisode comedy series from Chipotle Mexican Grill. This series is a satire of "Big Ag" and "Big Food" practices, featuring the fictional megacorporation Animoil feeding cows petropellets, which are made from petroleum directly rather than indirectly, from the corn and soybean that require so much petroleum products to grow (nitrogen fertilizer is made from the nitrogen present in the air and hydrogen present in natural gas from fracking).

The series is part of an unconventional Chipotle marketing campaign to make people think about the origins of their food. Some agricultural groups have criticized the series as unrealistic. Along with the webisodes, people are also invited to play trivia based on each episode via their phone to win prizes from Chipotle.

Final Fantasy VII Remake

Final Fantasy VII Remake is an upcoming action role-playing game developed and published by Square Enix for the PlayStation 4. It is a remake of the 1997 PlayStation game Final Fantasy VII, retelling the original story following mercenary Cloud Strife as he and eco-terrorist group AVALANCHE battle against the corrupt Shinra megacorporation, and the rogue former Shinra soldier Sephiroth. Gameplay is planned to be a fusion of real-time action similar to Dissidia Final Fantasy, and strategic elements, and the game will be released as a multipart series.

Rumors and demands for a remake of VII existed for many years, but multiple reasons were given for why the project was not being developed. Four key original staff members returned to help with Remake: original character designer Tetsuya Nomura returned as both director and main character designer, original director Yoshinori Kitase acted as producer, Kazushige Nojima returned to write the script, and composer Nobuo Uematsu is also involved. The decision to release Remake in multiple parts was taken so the team did not have to cut any of the original content. They also decided to add new content and adjust the original character designs to balance between realism and stylization.

Fragile Allegiance

Fragile Allegiance is an open-ended 4X real-time strategy (RTS) game from Gremlin Interactive, released in 1996 for MS-DOS and Windows 95. The game begins on May 25, 2496, as the player begins their employment with TetraCorp (a large interstellar megacorporation) who have set up a new asteroid mining franchise operation in the Fragmented Sectors. There are six alien races competing with Tetracorp for these resources. Beginning with one building and one million credits, the player is tasked with building up a successful mining operation to sell as much ore as possible to the Federation. Diplomacy is crucial to the success or failure of this franchise operation as the players' colonies begin to encroach on one another.

The game features complex diplomacy between players and includes real-time lip-synced animations for in-game actors. Described as a combination of SimCity 2000, Civilization and Risk, Fragile Allegiance uses an icon based GUI for all menus and game commands. Unlike other RTS games, there is no defined tech tree, with technology being unlocked by the purchase of 36 blueprints at any time during the course of the game. Fragile Allegiance is the spiritual successor to K240 and there are many similarities between the two.

Fragile Allegiance generally scored well with reviewers, with PC Gamer UK giving the game the Game of Distinction award and it was praised for its graphics, interface and sound. The game has problems running on Windows XP and later Windows versions, as it was designed for MS-DOS and ported to Windows 95.

Hyper Force

Hyper Force is a side-scrolling action-adventure platform video game developed by Visual Impact Productions and published by Songbird Productions exclusively for the Atari Jaguar on April 10, 2000.The players take control of a lone soldier in the year 2099, where a megacorporation that has destroyed multiple planets plans to start a war against Earth if they are not stopped. Originally announced in 1994, Hyper Force was showcased in E3 1995 but it was not released until 2000, a year after the system was declared as an open platform by Hasbro Interactive in 1999.Hyper Force received mixed to positive reception from critics since its release, with praise towards the graphics, controls and gameplay, while the music, sound effects and technical shortcomings of the game were regarded as negative points.

Pakistan National Shipping Corporation (PNSC)

The Pakistan National Shipping Corporation, abbreviated PNSC, is the national flag carrier and a state-owned megacorporation under the control of the Government of Pakistan. The Corporation's head office is located in Karachi. A regional office based in Lahore caters for upcountry shipping requirements. The Corporation also has an extensive overseas network of agents looking after its worldwide shipping business. The Pakistan Merchant Navy is the fleet of state-owned merchant vessels flying the flag of Pakistan National Shipping Corporation and the Civil Ensign of Pakistan.

The Chairman of PNSC is appointed by the federal government, and is usually a three star naval officer (or of equivalent rank from other services). The PNSC Chairman as of July 2018 is Rizwan Ahmed. Three PNSC chairmen- Yastur-ul-Haq Malik, Saeed Mohammad Khan and Mansurul Haq- have gone on to serve as the Chief of Naval Staff. The Chairman PNSC is also ex offico the Vice Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Karachi Port Trust.

Remember Me (video game)

Remember Me is an action-adventure video game developed by Dontnod Entertainment and published by Capcom. It was released worldwide in June 2013 for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. The game's plot focuses on Nilin, a memory hunter working for an underground resistance called the Errorists. When the game starts, she has been stripped of nearly all her memories by megacorporation Memorize. With the help of a mysterious man named Edge, she goes on a quest to bring down Memorize and recover her lost memories. Throughout the story, she is permitted to use her Memory Remix power to ultimately refurbish people's recollections. The combat consists of a modified combo system called Pressen.

Remember Me was developed as the debut project of Dontnod Entertainment, with one of the company's founding members Jean-Maxime Moris as its director. Part of his goal for the game was to create a thought-provoking narrative, and eventually settled on a female protagonist to help convey the story's themes. Originally a PlayStation 3-exclusive under Sony titled Adrift, it was cancelled in 2011 and later purchased by Capcom which resurrected it as a multiplatform game. General praise was given for the world design, Olivier Deriviere's soundtrack, the ambition of the story and the Memory Remix segments, while the main criticisms laid against other aspects of the story, poor design choices and formulaic combat.

Sephiroth (Final Fantasy)

Sephiroth (Japanese: セフィロス, Hepburn: Sefirosu) is a fictional character and main antagonist in the role-playing video game Final Fantasy VII developed by Square (now Square Enix). Character designer Tetsuya Nomura conceived and designed Sephiroth as an antagonist to - and direct physical opposite of - the game's main character, Cloud Strife. The character was voiced in Japanese by voice actor Toshiyuki Morikawa and in English by both Lance Bass in Kingdom Hearts and George Newbern in all his subsequent appearances.

Sephiroth is later revealed to be the result of an experiment by the megacorporation Shinra, in which they injected him with cells from the extraterrestrial lifeform Jenova when he was still a fetus. Upon discovering this, Sephiroth decides to follow what he believes to be his destiny and take control of the Planet, while Cloud and the game's other protagonists attempt to stop him. Sephiroth's background and role in the story are expanded in the Compilation of Final Fantasy VII. Additionally, he appears as a boss character in the Kingdom Hearts series and other video games developed by Square. Sephiroth has been well-received within the video game community and is highly ranked on many lists of the best video game villains and Final Fantasy characters.

The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys

The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys is a 2013 comic book limited series written by Gerard Way and Shaun Simon, illustrated by Becky Cloonan and published by Dark Horse Comics. The series serves as a sequel to the My Chemical Romance concept album Danger Days: The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys, focusing on the followers of the original Killjoys as they try to fight against the tyrannical megacorporation Better Living Industries.

Time Chasers

Time Chasers (also known as Tangents) is a 1994 science fiction film directed by David Giancola and starring Matthew Bruch, George Woodard, and Bonnie Pritchard. During a limited release in 1993, it opened on 12 screens. The film follows the adventures of an amateur inventor who goes through time with his female accomplice to stop an evil megacorporation intent on changing history for profit. The film was lampooned on Mystery Science Theater 3000 in 1997 and by Rifftrax in a live event broadcast on May 5, 2016.

Weyland

Weyland or Weylandt may refer to:

In mythologyWeyland or Wayland the Smith, a legendary smith in Germanic and Norse mythology

Völundarkviða, the Lay of Weyland, a Norse epic poem about the smithPeopleBernadette Weyland, German politician

Thomas Weyland (1230–1298), British justice

Jacob Weyland (fl. 1705), Dutch explorer of the New Guinea coast who discovered Geelvink Bay

Richard Weyland (1780–1864), British politician

Joseph Weyland (1826–1894), German bishop

Paul Weyland (1888–1972), German anti-Semitic conman and agitator who organized an anti-Einstein campaign

Hermann Weyland (1888–1974), German botanist and chemist

Otto P. Weyland (1903–1979), American Air Force General

Marcel Weyland (born 1927), Polish-Australian translator

Jack Weyland (born 1940), American physicist and author

Joseph Weyland (born 1943), Luxembourgian diplomat

Wouter Weylandt (1984–2011), Belgian cyclist who died in the Giro d'ItaliaFictionIn the Alien/Predator franchise:

Charles Bishop Weyland, a fictional character from Alien vs. Predator (2004) and the original founder of Weyland Industries pre-2004 — see Bishop (Aliens)

Weyland Corporation (Weyland Industries), a fictional technology corporation predecessor to Weyland-Yutani, founded by Peter Weyland in 2012 who was in turn introduced in the movie Prometheus (2012 film)

Weyland-Yutani, a fictional megacorporation from the Alien franchise

Weyland Smith from The Fables Vertigo Comics title

John Wayland Smith, a fictional blacksmith from The Dark Is Rising Sequence fantasy series by Susan Cooper

Weyland, a space station in the Honorverse, see List of locations in the Honorverse

Weyland Consortium, a fictional megacorporation from Android: Netrunner

Cadmann Weyland, a fictional character from the science fiction novels The Legacy of Heorot and Beowulf's Children co-authored by Larry Niven, Jerry Pournelle, and Steven Barnes.OtherPoint Weyland, headland in South Australia

The Weyland Mountains or Köbowrè Range in West Papua named after Jacob Weyland

Weyland ringtail possum (Pseudochirulus caroli), a species of marsupial from Papua named after the mountains

Zack Fair

Zack Fair (ザックス・フェア, Zakkusu Fea) is a fictional character first introduced as a non-player character in the 1997 role-playing video game Final Fantasy VII by Square (now Square Enix), and subsequently expanded upon in the metaseries Compilation of Final Fantasy VII.

In the original game, Zack is a late member of the paramilitary organization SOLDIER, the military wing of the megacorporation Shinra. During the game, Zack is revealed to have been Aerith Gainsborough's first boyfriend, as well as a friend of Cloud Strife, the game's protagonist. Zack ultimately died in the weeks leading up to the opening of the game protecting Cloud from Shinra's army after they had escaped from imprisonment and being the subjects of genetic experimentation. He is the second owner of the Buster Sword (バスターソード, Basutā Sōdo), and wielded it before Cloud, giving it to him as he died. Zack also appears in the Compilation titles Before Crisis: Final Fantasy VII, Last Order: Final Fantasy VII, Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children and, most significantly, Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII, a prequel in which he is the protagonist.

Zack Fair was originally not a part of Final Fantasy VII. However, scenario writer Kazushige Nojima wanted to bring a sense of mystery to the title, and created the character to help complicate Cloud's backstory. He was designed by Tetsuya Nomura, and his name derived from "fair weather," to contrast with Cloud Strife's name. With Zack's conceptual backstory in place for Final Fantasy VII, the staff decided to use Compilation of Final Fantasy VII to expand upon his character. Zack is voiced by Kenichi Suzumura in Japanese and Rick Gomez in English. Suzumura was chosen specifically by Nomura for his voice, and was given the role without an audition. Western critics have praised Zack's character, commenting on his development since Final Fantasy VII.

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