Share These Suds: The Low-Waste Soviet Soda Machine

Could we learn from knock-off soda machines once made in Russia?

In his book Made in Russia: Unsung Soviet Design, Michael Idov looks into how Russia tried to transform tank and rocket factories to churn out consumer goods, like boom boxes and soda machines, mostly by reverse engineering these products from Western imports. As Julia Barton reports on the always incredible 99 Percent Invisible, the results were unmistakably Soviet:

Take your Soviet soda machine. In those, carbonated drinks came not in bottles, but straight into a communal drinking glass, something chained to the machine.


Give the glass a rinse before using, insert one kopeck for plain soda water, three for a squirt of syrup, and then, ahh. With all the plastic floating around and the nagging debate about any bottle's carbon footprint, you have to wonder: Are machines like this, with some public health updates, perhaps, an idea worth stealing back?

Photo: ITAR-TASS Photo Agency courtesy of Made in Russia.

via Barry Schapiro / Twitter

The phrase "stay in your lane" is usually lobbed at celebrities who talk about politics on Twitter by people who disagree with them. People in the sports world will often get a "stick to sports" when they try to have an opinion that lies outside of the field of play.

Keep Reading

The Free the Nipple movement is trying to remove the stigma on women's breasts by making it culturally acceptable and legal for women to go topless in public. But it turns out, Free the Nipple might be fighting on the wrong front and should be focusing on freeing the nipple in a place you'd never expect. Your own home.

A woman in Utah is facing criminal charges for not wearing a shirt in her house, with prosecutors arguing that women's chests are culturally considered lewd.

Keep Reading

In August, the Recording Academy hired their first female CEO, Deborah Dugan. Ten days before the Grammys, Dugan was placed on administrative leave for misconduct allegations after a female employee said Dugan was "abusive" and created a "toxic and intolerable" work environment. However, Dugan says she was actually removed from her position for complaining to human resources about sexual harassment, pay disparities, and conflicts of interest in the award show's nomination process.

Just five days before the Grammys, Dugan filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and her claims are many. Dugan says she was paid less than former CEO Neil Portnow. In 2018, Portnow received criticism for saying women need to "step up" when only two female acts won Grammys. Portnow decided to not renew his contract shortly after. Dugan says she was also asked to hire Portnow as a consultant for $750,000 a year, which she refused to do.

Keep Reading