Re: Words and memes: criteria for acceptance of new belief or meme

From: Philip Jonkers (
Date: Sat Feb 09 2002 - 20:52:41 GMT

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    Subject: Re: Words and memes: criteria for acceptance of new belief or meme
    Date: Sat, 9 Feb 2002 11:52:41 -0900
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    > Hello, Philip,
    > Sorry for the poor phrasing.

    Hi Lawrence, no problem...
    > By this, I mean that different people will require (consciously or
    > unconsciously) different levels of 'proof' or certainty before they will
    > accept a new belief or meme. For example, some will want total proof that
    > leaves no room for uncertainty. Others will accept a belief that contains
    > some ambiguity. (Colloquially, we refer to this phenomena by saying that
    > someone is 'hard to convince', or 'gullible', or 'stubborn'.)
    > Does this clarify the phrase?

    Yes is does. We are on a par still.

    > Further, our criteria for acceptance of a meme can also vary with the
    > of the meme. Some people accept memes that come from authority figures,
    > others will want to see demonstrations, others will want to hear an
    > explanation that 'makes sense' given their prior knowledge. People can
    > change a belief they have because they come the conclusion that it is not
    > serving them and look for an alternative.

    In my own words, I'd like to talk of a barrier
    of skepsis that has to be overcome by the meme to get adopted. Some people
    have low barriers, others high. Indeed, the height of the barrier also
    on who offers the meme at hand (authority figures, `comedians', kids,
    elders, etc...) and on the timedependent status of the host (is he `sharp',
    `susceptible', good mooded etc.) as well as whether the meme is interesting
    or appealing to
    the host.


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