Code-X (9)
By: Joshua Glenn | Categories: About Josh, Codebreaking, Semiotics


Call this Digestive Supplements market category code: S2S (Sister-to-Sister).


Definition: The authority claim for the digestive supplement is because a peer — someone just like you, who’s tested the product — vouches for it.

phillips colon

Notes on this code: Brands in this category can’t rely on medical-authority coding — because medical science doesn’t believe that supplements work. In what sort of authority can the consumer trust? There are several non-medical authority codes in this category — Pharmacist coding, for example, and Ancient/Exotic Remedy coding — but the dominant authority code is S2S.



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Joshua Glenn is a Boston-based semiotic culture and brand analyst. He is editor/publisher of HILOBROW and the Radium Age science fiction imprint HILOBOOKS. In addition, Josh is co-author of several books, including (with Mark Kingwell and the cartoonist Seth) THE IDLER'S GLOSSARY and THE WAGE SLAVE'S GLOSSARY, the object-oriented story collections TAKING THINGS SERIOUSLY and (with Rob Walker) SIGNIFICANT OBJECTS, and (with Elizabeth Foy Larsen) the family activities guides UNBORED, UNBORED GAMES, and the forthcoming UNBORED ADVENTURE. In the ’00s, Josh was an editor and columnist for the BOSTON GLOBE's IDEAS section; in the ’90s, he published the high-lowbrow zine/journal HERMENAUT.