RE: Is Suicide Contagious? A Case Study in Applied Memetics

From: Scott Chase (
Date: Tue May 01 2001 - 04:01:40 BST

  • Next message: Scott Chase: "RE: The Status of Memetics as a Science (another long post)"

    Received: by id EAA15354 (8.6.9/5.3[ref] for from; Tue, 1 May 2001 04:05:58 +0100
    X-Originating-IP: []
    From: "Scott Chase" <>
    Subject: RE: Is Suicide Contagious? A Case Study in Applied Memetics
    Date: Mon, 30 Apr 2001 23:01:40 -0400
    Content-Type: text/plain; format=flowed
    Message-ID: <>
    X-OriginalArrivalTime: 01 May 2001 03:01:40.0783 (UTC) FILETIME=[0B8F3BF0:01C0D1EB]
    Precedence: bulk

    >From: Vincent Campbell <>
    >To: "''" <>
    >Subject: RE: Is Suicide Contagious? A Case Study in Applied Memetics
    >Date: Mon, 30 Apr 2001 16:49:25 +0100
    >Well, interestingly this may a factor of demographics- the primary audience
    >for soaps, at least in the West, have been women of certain and classes,
    >probably haven't had access to the net up to the present moment. (Compared
    >to say the sci-fi community which more or less invented internet lists,
    >since they were doing them ways back in the days of Arpanet and Genie- but
    >which was made up of alrgely male, tech-types who's leisrue interests
    >combined with their professional abilities).
    I haven't a clue how much soap opera related websites, discussion lists and
    usenet groups have invaded the net. I wouldn't assume that the extent of the
    permeation is insignificant though.
    >I'm not sure this will ever change that much, though, since soap fans have
    >never engaged so overtly in fanzines, and slash fiction and the like, that
    >other fan groups have.
    I'm not sure what you're saying here, but I have noticed soap opera related
    magazines ("fanzines"?) displayed at the grocery store. Somebody must be
    buying this stuff. Maybe things are different in the U.S. than other places.
    I wonder if one were to open one of these magazines how many websites would
    be advertized.
    >As far as academic work on the goes, there is a significant strand of media
    >studies work on soaps (including stuff on gender). One of my colleagues,
    >for example, wrote a book about soaps a few years ago.
    Isn't professional wrestling kinda like a male soap opera? I figured
    memeticists would be onto this popular form of "sports entertainment". I
    suppose Vince McMahon could be considered a "memetic engineer"

    There's been extensive cross pollination between wrestling and music and
    movies. "The Rock" is now starring in the new "Mummy" movie. "Hulk Hogan" is
    an icon who starred in one of the "Rocky" movies. IIRC Cindy Lauper made a
    foray into wrestling back in the 80's. Bill Goldberg starred with Jean
    Claude van Damme in a recent movie called "Universal Soldier". If I'm not
    mistaken pro-wrestling is big on the net, with usenet, chatrooms and
    websites devoted.

    The only tolerable soap was "General Hospital" and that was only on very
    rare occasions. The Luke and Laura thing was overplayed. BTW, Rick
    Springfield and John Stamos started on GH (not that those are very good
    selling points). IIRC Demi Moore did too, but I'd have to double check that.
    Get your FREE download of MSN Explorer at

    This was distributed via the memetics list associated with the
    Journal of Memetics - Evolutionary Models of Information Transmission
    For information about the journal and the list (e.g. unsubscribing)

    This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Tue May 01 2001 - 04:09:27 BST