Socialism & Tourism #2: Transdniestr

Prior to the release of my new travel article about socialist tourism, I will be previewing a few of the socialist states featured. This time, it’s Transdniestr.

Following Poland’s 1989 overthrow of the commies, Soviet states toppled like pissed dominoes. Within two years the USSR had gone and socialism in Europe was finished. Or so you might think. Actually, as Poland and co. marched towards democracy, one sliver of Eastern Europe was left behind.

Transdniestr, a teensy region in the east of Moldova, broke away from the then Socialist Republic in 1990, following ominous rumblings of reform from Chişinău. After a two-year girly fight, a fresh yet familiar socialist system was formed under cuddly, pastry-faced autocrat Igor Smirnov… and it’s one which continues unopposed to this day. Continue reading

The Two Sides of Dark Marketing


Dark marketing may not be a popular topic of conversation down the pub, or a subject of family debate over a sunday roast, but last year the increasingly popular advertising technique got some important exposure through its use by that most cuddly behemoth of unquenchable consumerism… McDonald’s. The fast food giant, more normally associated with in-your-face mass-media advertising and sport sponsorship, was found to be the quiet and unassuming creator of a popular online computer game. Continue reading