… 2021-01-13




Text 3

The power and ambition of the giants of the digital economy is
astonishing-Amazon has just announced the purchase of the upmarket grocery chain
Whole Foods for $l3.5bn,but two years ago Facebook paid even more than that to
acquire the WhatsApp messaging service, which doesn’t have any physical product
at all. What WhatsApp offered Facebook was an intricate and finely detailed web
of its users’ friendships and social lives.

Facebook promised the European commission then that it would not link phone
numbers to Facebook identities, but it broke the promise almost as soon as the
deal went through. Even without knowing what was in the messages, the knowledge
of who sent them and to whom was enormously revealing and still could be. What
political journalist, what party whip, would not want to know the makeup of the
WhatsApp groups in which Therea May’s enemies are currently plotting? It may be
that the value of Whole Foods to Amazon is not so much the 460 shops it owns,
but the records of which customers have purchased what.

Competition law appears to be the only way to address these imbalances of
power. But it is clumsy. For one thing, it is very slow compared to the pace of
Change within the digital economy. By the time a problem has been addressed and
remedied it may have vanished in the marketplace, to be replaced by new abuses
of power. But there is a deeper conceptual problem, too. Competition law as
presently interpreted deals with financial disadvantage to consumers and this is
not obvious when the users of these services don’t pay for them. The users of
their Services are not their customers. That would be the people who buy
advertising from them-and Facebook and Google, the two virtual giants, dominate
digital advertising to the disadvantage of all other media and entertainment

The product they’re selling is data, and we, the users, convert our lives
to date for the benefit of the digital giants. Just as some ants farm the bugs
called aphids for the honeydew the produce when they feed, so Google farms us
for the data that our digital lives yield. Ants keep predatory insects away from
where their aphids feed; Gmail keeps the spamme out of our inboxes. It doesn’t
feel like a human or democratic relationship, even if both sides benefit.

31. According to Paragraph 1, Facebook acquired WhatsApp for its .

[A] digital products

[B] user information

[C] physical assets

[D] quality service

32. Linking phone numbers to Facebook identities may .

[A] worsen political disputes

[B] mess up customer records

[C] pose a risk to Facebook users

[D] mislead the European commission

33. According to the author, competition law .

[A] should sever the new market powers

[B] may worsen the economic imbalance

[C] should not provide just one legal solution

[D] cannot keep pace with the changing market

34. Competition law as presently interpreted can hardly protect Facebook
users because .

[A] they are not defined as customers

[B] they are not financially reliable

[C] the services are generally digital

[D] the services are paid for by advertisers

35. The ants analogy is used to illustrate .

[A] a win-win business model between digital giants

[B] a typical competition pattern among digital giants

[C] the benefits provided for digital giants ’customers

[D] the relationship between digital giants and their users



Even in traditional offices,”the lingua franca of corporate America has
gottenmuch more emotional and much more right-brained than it was 20 years ago,”
said Ha rva rd Business School professor Nancy Koehn She sta rted spinning off
examples.”If you and I pa rachuted back to Fortune 500 companies in 1990,we
would see much less frequent use of terms like Journey, mission,passion. There
were goals,there were strategies,there were objectives,but we didn’t talk about
energy;we didn’t talk about passion.”

Koehn pointed out that this new era of corporate vocabula ry is very
“team”-oriented-and not by coincidence.”Let’s not forget sDorts-in
male-dominated corporate America,it’s still a big deal. It’s not explicitly
conscious;it’s the idea that I’m a coach,and you’re my team,and we’re in this
togethec. There are lots and lots of CEOs in very different companies,but most
think of themselves as coaches and this is their team and they want to win”.

These terms a re also intended to infuse work with meaning-and,as Khu rana
points out,increase allegiance to the firm.”You have the importation of
terminology that historically used to be associated with non-profit
organizations and religious organizations:Terms like vision,values,passion,and

This new focus on personal fulfillment can help keep employees motivated
amid increasingly loud debates over work-life balance The “mommy wars” of the
1990s a re still going on today, prompting arguments about whywomen still
can’thave it all and books like Sheryl Sandberg’s Lean In,whose title has become
abuzzword in its own right. Terms like
unplug,offline,life-hack,bandwidth,andcapacity are all about setting boundaries
between the office and the home But ifyour work is your “passion,” you’II be
more likely to devote yourself to it,even ifthat means going home for dinner and
then working long after the kids are in bed

But this seems to be the irony of office speak:Everyone makes fun of
it,butmanage rs love it,companies depend on it,and regular people willingly
absorb itAs Nunberg said,”You can get people to think it’s nonsense at the same
timethat you buy into it.” In a workplace that’s fundamentally indiffe rent to
your lifeand its meaning office speak can help you figu re out how you relate to
yourwork-and how your work defines who you are

31. According to Nancy Koehn, office language has become________

[A]more e motional

[B]more objective

[C]less energetic

[D]less energetic

[E]less strategic

32.”team”-oriented corporate vocabulary is closely related to________

[A]historical incidents

[B]gender difference

[C]sports culture

[D]athletic executives

33.Khurana believes that the importation of terminology aims to________

[A]revive historical terms

[B]promote company image

[C]foster corporate cooperation

[D]strengthen employee loyalty

34.It can be inferred that Lean In_________

[A]voices for working women

[B]appeals to passionate workaholics

[C]triggers dcbates among mommies

[D]praises motivated employees

35.Which of the following statements is true about office speak?

[A]Managers admire it but avoid it

[B]Linguists believe it to be nonsense

[C]Companies find it to be fundamental

[D]Regular people mock it but accept it


Text 3

Scientists have found that although we are prone to snap overreactions, if
we take a moment and think about how we are likely to react, we can reduce or
even eliminate the negative effects of our quick, hard-wired responses.

Snap decisions can be important defense mechanisms; if we are judging
whether someone is dangerous, our brains and bodies are hard-wired to react very
quickly, within milliseconds. But we need more time to assess other factors. To
accurately tell whether someone is sociable, studies show, we need at least a
minute, preferably five. It takes a while to judge complex aspects of
personality, like neuroticism or open-mindedness.

But snap decisions in reaction to rapid stimuli aren’t exclusive to the
interpersonal realm. Psychologists at the University of Toronto found that
viewing a fast-food logo for just a few milliseconds primes us to read 20
percent faster, even though reading has little to do with eating. We
unconsciously associate fast food with speed and impatience and carry those
impulses into whatever else we’re doing, Subjects exposed to fast-food flashes
also tend to think a musical piece lasts too long.

Yet we can reverse such influences. If we know we will overreact to
consumer products or housing options when we see a happy face (one reason good
sales representatives and real estate agents are always smiling), we can take a
moment before buying. If we know female job screeners are more likely to reject
attractive female applicants, we can help screeners understand their biases-or
hire outside screeners.

John Gottman, the marriage expert, explains that we quickly “thin slice”
information reliably only after we ground such snap reactions in “thick sliced”
long-term study. When Dr. Gottman really wants to assess whether a couple will
stay together, he invites them to his island retreat for a muck longer
evaluation; two days, not two seconds.

Our ability to mute our hard-wired reactions by pausing is what
differentiates us from animals: doge can think about the future only
intermittently or for a few minutes. But historically we have spent about 12
percent of our days contemplating the longer term. Although technology might
change the way we react, it hasn’t changed our nature. We still have the
imaginative capacity to rise above temptation and reverse the high-speed

31. The time needed in making decisions may____.

[A] vary according to the urgency of the situation

[B] prove the complexity of our brain reaction

[C] depend on the importance of the assessment

[D] predetermine the accuracy of our judgment

32. Our reaction to a fast-food logo shows that snao decisions____.

[A] can be associative

[B] are not unconscious

[C] can be dangerous

[D] are not impulsive

33. Toreverse the negative influences of snap decisions,we should____.

[A] trust our first impression

[B] do as people usually do

[C] think before we act

[D] ask for expert advice

34. John Gottman says that reliable snap reaction are based on____.

[A] critical assessment

[B]‘‘thin sliced ’’study

[C] sensible explanation

[D] adequate information

35. The author’s attitude toward reversing the high-speed trend is____.

[A] tolerant

[B] uncertain

[C] optimistic

[D] doubtful


Text 4

When the government talks about infrastructure contributing to the economy
the focus is usually on roads, railways, broadband and energy. Housing is seldom

Why is that? To some extent the housing sector must shoulder the blame. We
have not been good at communicating the real value that housing can contribute
to economic growth. Then there is the scale of the typical housing project. It
is hard to shove for attention among multibillion-pound infrastructure project,
so it is inevitable that the attention is focused elsewhere. But perhaps the
most significant reason is that the issue has always been so politically

Nevertheless, the affordable housing situation is desperate. Waiting lists
increase all the time and we are simply not building enough new homes.

The comprehensive spending review offers an opportunity for the government
to help rectify this. It needs to put historical prejudices to one side and take
some steps to address our urgent housing need.

There are some indications that it is preparing to do just that. The
communities minister, Don Foster, has hinted that George Osborne, Chancellor of
the Exchequer, may introduce more flexibility to the current cap on the amount
that local authorities can borrow against their housing stock debt. Evidence
shows that 60,000 extra new homes could be built over the next five years if the
cap were lifted, increasing GDP by 0.6%.

Ministers should also look at creating greater certainty in the rental
environment, which would have a significant impact on the ability of registered
providers to fund new developments from revenues.

But it is not just down to the government. While these measures would be
welcome in the short term, we must face up to the fact that the existing ?4.5bn
programme of grants to fund new affordable housing, set to expire in 2015,is
unlikely to be extended beyond then. The Labour party has recently announced
that it will retain a large part of the coalition’s spending plans if returns to
power. The housing sector needs to accept that we are very unlikely to ever
return to era of large-scale public grants. We need to adjust to this changing

36. The author believes that the housing sector__

[A] has attracted much attention

[B] involves certain political factors

[C] shoulders too much responsibility

[D] has lost its real value in economy

37. It can be learned that affordable housing has__

[A] increased its home supply

[B] offered spending opportunities

[C] suffered government biases

[D] disappointed the government

38. According to Paragraph 5,George Osborne may_______.

[A] allow greater government debt for housing

[B] stop local authorities from building homes

[C] prepare to reduce housing stock debt

[D] release a lifted GDP growth forecast

39.It can be inferred that a stable rental environment would_______.

[A]lower the costs of registered providers

[B]lessen the impact of government interference

[C]contribute to funding new developments

[D]relieve the ministers of responsibilities

40.The author believes that after 2015,the government may______.

[A]implement more policies to support housing

[B]review the need for large-scale public grants

[C]renew the affordable housing grants programme

[D]stop generous funding to the housing sector



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