Re: Memes are Interactors

Ton Maas (
Mon, 27 Apr 1998 08:19:50 +0200

Message-Id: <v03102801b169d2a23af3@[]>
In-Reply-To: <>
Date: Mon, 27 Apr 1998 08:19:50 +0200
From: Ton Maas <>
Subject: Re: Memes are Interactors

Josip wrote:

>Dear Mr. Lynch,
>you wrote in "Thought Contagion":
>"Another social barrier to thought contagion, the credential system,
>provides a method of rejecting important kinds of belief transmission from
>the uncredentialed. Those holding a doctorate, professional license, or
>clergy post thereby gain more access to minds than those lacking such
>distinctions. People do make exceptions, since most are themselves
>uncredentialed. Yet highly credentialed individuals may apply credential
>systems more vigorously, limiting the acquisition of common thought
>contagions among their ranks. Moreover, less credentialed people can
>recognize the restrictive effects of credential systems well enough that
>they don't even try to impart beliefs to someone with impressive
>credentials. All of this helps restrict the circles in which specific
>thought contagions can travel."
>I deeply admire your and other people's work on the memetics field, as I
>deeply admire any work done by anyone, with or without credentials, who is
>attempting to make this World a better place to live. IMHO (thanks to
>Bruce Howlett), Credentials are not equal to Competence.

Please note that this one of the universals of human enterprise: you can't
formalize qualifications without losing sight of quality. For this reason
inquiries about competence often become "no no's" in formalized communities
like the science business.


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