RE: On 'information transmission'

Richard Brodie (
Thu, 4 Mar 1999 07:31:09 -0800

From: "Richard Brodie" <>
To: <>
Subject: RE: On 'information transmission'
Date: Thu, 4 Mar 1999 07:31:09 -0800
In-Reply-To: <000201be6625$595ad260$fe5295c1@pc>

Mark Mills wrote:

>Thus, we have situations like that mentioned by Paul. Paul is frustrated
>by the impossibility of 'transmitting information.' Actually, he is
>hoping Aaron can 'recreate' his perspective, but we like 'transmission'
>because it sounds like the receiver has no choice in the matter. It is
>more clear cut.

This is SUCH a key point.

I'm fine with using the word "transmit" to include the
Blackmore/Marsden/Gatherer school of behavioral imitation, to include
passing down of oral traditions, and to include all methods that memes use
to get themselves replicated from one mind to another. But to the meme, so
long as it gets itself replicated, transmitted, or recreated in another
mind, it has accomplished its task. That there may be several different
mechanisms for accomplishing this purpose matters not -- to the meme.

An interesting footnote: at least one modern "designer mind virus" group --
Landmark Education, successor to est -- actually uses the term "recreate"
when referring to trainers successfully modeling the original training given
by Werner Erhard. So replication with fidelity is an OVERT strategy-meme in
the overall cultural organism! The other necessary ingredient, evangelism,
is literally written on the walls: a huge Mission Statement begins,
"Enrollment is the cornerstone of everything we do."


Blackmore, S. (1999) The Meme Machine. Oxford University Press

Brodie, R. (1996) Virus of the Mind: The New Science of the Meme. Integral

Brodie, R. (1998) Meme Update #22: "Landmark Education Sues Elle Magazine"

Richard Brodie
Author, "Virus of the Mind: The New Science of the Meme"
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