Received: by alpheratz.cpm.aca.mmu.ac.uk id RAA04549 (8.6.9/5.3[ref firstname.lastname@example.org] for cpm.aca.mmu.ac.uk from email@example.com); Thu, 26 Apr 2001 17:01:51 +0100 Message-ID: <001401c0ce6f$1cbfd6c0$8308bed4@default> From: "Kenneth Van Oost" <Kenneth.Van.Oost@village.uunet.be> To: <firstname.lastname@example.org> References: <2D1C159B783DD211808A006008062D3101745DEA@inchna.stir.ac.uk> Subject: Re: Is Suicide Contagious? A Case Study in Applied Memetics Date: Thu, 26 Apr 2001 17:38:58 +0200 Content-Type: text/plain; charset="iso-8859-1" Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit X-Priority: 3 X-MSMail-Priority: Normal X-Mailer: Microsoft Outlook Express 5.00.2314.1300 X-MimeOLE: Produced By Microsoft MimeOLE V5.00.2314.1300 Sender: email@example.com Precedence: bulk Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org
> On the other hand this issue of public interest versus what the public are
> interested in is a problematic distinction for me. If one sees these as
> contradictory, then what is the solution? Left to their own volition, the
> public tends to avoid serious issues and politics and what not, and
> escapism and entertainment (in very general terms of media use that is).
You can 't blaim the public for that, and on the other hand this is very
interesting stuff from a memetic point of view.
What kind of memes are the cause to favour entertainment and vulgar
escapism !? Who are we to say that they doesn 't must do that !!
IMO, and I stick to this, the public is not interested in politics and
serious matters just up to the point that those begin to intervene with
their ordinary common lives.
If you for example restrict the speed limit for cars for the sake of
and for the sake of public safety, many will argue that their freedom is
thrown into the balance by this, that kind of stuff.
These contradictions are a very interesting area to exlore memetically
> So, the only way to get people to engage with their responsibilities as
> citizens (i.e. to be interested in politics etc.) is to coerce them or
> "educate' them in some way.
<< yes, but is it necessary !? You say it yourself, this is very ineffective
and unproductive ! So, in a way why bother at all !?
From a political point of view it would be appropiate of course to learn
the people to which extent they can show responsibility.
But is that the only reason !? Just to keep a nation political/ social/
on its feet !? I wonder and on the other hand I am a little bit worried.
If the public is not interested in those serious and political issues, why
a fact would those people who were engaged in those matters give any
notion of responsibility towards the public !?
From out some dark sense of solidarity and compassion !? Oh, come on!!
Would there be in the end any profit if you ' educate ' people to show
responsibility !? I think not !
Not in the simple way of education. IMO, you gonna have to do more than
that, and than again, ethical crisisses come to mind! Memetic engineering,
ok but again... ethics !!
Look, somehow there is a difference between serious matters and just
playing stupid_ what is the difference between Shakespeare and West
Side Story !?
For what we puke on the former and where is the attraction in the latter !?
And for other people just the other way round !?
The question can be asked, what is so attractive in fooling around and
what makes serious matters so unattractive, if they are not in some way
genetical/ memetical determined !? We are bound to what we are...
And than again,what would be the reason of nature by just letting people
having fun, to let them watch silly soaps and to let them participate in
TV- shows and stupid games shows !?
All comes down to memes and their ways by which they do exist and
in which ways they want to propagate themselves.
But,this seems to provoke a very important question_ where did memes
go wrong !?
Or would it be easier to propagate along lines of silliness/ vulgarity and
voyeurism !? I suppose it is, but where is than the contradiction coming
from !? Why not staying at playing stupid !?
Or is it just that where serious matters come to intervene with those memes
of pleasure and stupidity that others memeplexes come to their rescue !?
Well, when this is the case, than I suspect that the quality of the
is diminishing. Oh, the diversity and what kind will have increased and
probably that will make the system ' better ', but than again, not in the
way I see it though !!
I don 't see the distinction; the contradiction as such as problematic, but
rather the fact that serious matters are getting dispelled from the public
Tomorrow's World needs a competition to attract viewers, to get an
audience ! Now, I ask you !
Is that the way by which the media, or science for that matter is supposed
to work !? I ask you again !
> Similar arguments could be made about TV talk shows like Jerry Springer-
> exploitation of marginal groups for audience voyeurism, or vibrant forum
> such groups to express their concerns in ways familiar to them and
<< yes, I agree, and than again, why raising this as the standard !?
Or is this just the way by which memes propagate !?
If this is so, well than I have serious questions about the status of mind
many who I see around me though !!
In a sense, there is no other way left by which those groups can express
their concerns, there is no ' intellectual ' forum where scientists,
can express their expertise. And if there is one, is it very quickly
because 1) there is no audience for it , 2) it looses its importance be-
cause it needs a competition, or advertising to get it going and 3) most
of the people who is watching, by accident, don 't understand it...
But, that is the people 's prerogative...
( I am, because we are) left out in the dark
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