Metablogging: Proposals and Introspection

Problems and Introspection

I keep tossing about the idea of getting my own domain name, it seems it can be done rather cheaply (1.99-7.99/yr for .info or .net with various degrees of free hosting), but I keep running into a content wall, meaning do I really have enough to say to even justify that meager fee? Let me rephrase that, I know I have a lot to say (perhaps too much), but do I really have any thing worth reading (or people's time) to add to the already claustrophobic cacophony of the internet?

I mean this in both an (egotistical) marketing sense, and in a proper introspective sense.

Why would people seek out what I have to say? Why would people be willing to waste a couple mouse gestures, and a minute or so of their time to listen to me, or look at my art, read my rants? I already, on my blog break most of the marketing rules of web content (especially according to the various annoying "how to make you blog popular" things on digg), my content is generally not very useful, I'm not telling anyone how to fix anything, I'm not helping anyone live life, there is no breaking news, I really am not giving anyone anything they want/need to hear. My public ranting serves no public purpose. Sure there are little psychological tricks I can pull to make people stick around and read it, sure there are little technological tricks I can pull to make myself visible, and appear popular (in the internet sense, like MySpace users being popular for having 6gazillion friends that they will never meet or talk to, the blogging community has much the same idiotic concept). I refuse to do this, since I would have people participating in a gimmick, and not something genuine.

To me authenticity is more important that popularity, this line of thought dooms me in the modern internet which is driven by image, make-beleive charisma, and marketing techniques. But it seems I have a message no one wants. My only internet popularity success is a string of Photoshopped vintage porn, my rants, and philosophical musings fare much much worse. There is really no reason people need to read them, and they really don't bring much more to the table, it is only one (arguably unqualified) man's opinion on nature. Nothing more.

More philosophically, why do I care if anyone reads (views) me or not? Which can be simplified into, why do I bother making this crap public in the first place? My original goal (long long ago) was simply to change the world, which is obviously naive but expected from some crackpot druggy in high-school. Later it became to force a discussion, which can be either taken for the mutual good, or strictly my own intellectual development. I wanted to open a conversation about things people don't think about generally, show people new territory to explore, new questions to ask (questions, after all, are more important than answers). But for some reason even discussion seems too high a goal now, since it has been a rather complete, unqualified failure. Yes, I have had one or two good discussions that (I hope) left both parties enriched, but that has been it for this modern internet project of mine. Outside of encouragement (which is greatly appreciated), there has been no discourse.

This is partly the fault of the blog format, I know. Flat text is not the best medium for conversation, and the very feel of it, limits things to shorter answers. I don't know how to solve this, nor whether it would be worth my time to try. In the long passed days of the collaborative (and now, long defunct) Nonservium.org, the actual text of the rants served to bring people to forums, or a bulletin board, so multi-player discussion could happen. Even that, though, was mildly disappointing, since it never entered a self-sustaining phase, equal time was spent pimping it, as to writing for it.

Notice how the question of; "why bother?", was left unanswered? there is a reason for this, since I can't answer it really. I don't know why I bother trying to shove my hopeless questioning down anyones throat. Perhaps it is entirely self-serving, I think better speaking out-loud, I think better when I have an opponent, a discussion. I want to better myself on the backs of others, but I hold hope that it can be mutual. Perhaps I just want to be known to exist, like much of what exists on the internet, I want to stand up and scream "HERE I AM!". Perhaps a little of both of these. I honestly don't know, and it doesn't matter, I can no more stop it than I can willfully stop breathing. I create, I publish, always have, always will. I've been doing it since I discovered I could, sometime in the shadowed landscape of my past. Perhaps when I was 10 or 11 I posted some droll story (since fiction was my delusional forte then) on a local BBS, and it hasn't stopped since, and there is no reason to think it will.

Proposed Solutions

But how can I stop screaming into a perceived void? How can I open discussion?

I think the forum idea comes close, since it does fill a need. Every forum of ideas I run into while browsing through the net is a dogmatic quagmire of jaded groupthink, full of immature children hurling fallacies at each other for daring to transcend what ever particular 1-dimentional paradigm the discussion resides in. People think they want to discuss, but all they ever really want to do is fit in. But forums require people. And that is my problem.

I also am on this community kick right now. I don't want to dominate, I don't want a privileged position, I only want to facilitate other people's freedom. (to be pompous, I want to be the irritating grain of sand, forcing the oyster to make his pearl). How could I incorporate this?

I have some ideas. Think of it as the Interactive Art Project v.2, or as "open source" art, starting people with a seed, a basic image, that would be freely editable, changeable by anyone, in any way. This seed and its infinite iterations would be freely hosted, and could be freely distributed. Though this is not as powerful as I would like it since it is limited to one medium (digital). Think of it as a graphical Wikipedia, complete with revision history, and discussion. How do I implement this?

But for my prime interest, philosophy, how could I emphasize the same character? Since a philosophical idea is the same as the above concept, except on a deeper level. It is open to the community, it is the source of new ideas, it grows and changes with participants and times. It freely morphs, and changes, it belongs to everyone, and everyone shades its existence and meaning. Philosophy is not the subject of stodgy Ph'D's sitting in ivory towers, it is the business of all of us, since its topic is life, which we all are experts on. How to emphasize this, and more-so, make it fun?

Before I suggested a philosophic reading circle. I would still like this, if I could find away to remove elitist over-tones that surround the term philosophy. Open it up for all, allowing mutual growth and benefit, that would be the goal. This is partly doable thanks to deconstruction, philosophy does not have to remain in the dusty and obscure realm of reading badly written books, by old asses (Kant, for example), but can be gleamed by looking at us, and our artifacts. Bunnicula might say as much about us and the world as A Critique of Whatnot: an Ontological Treatise into the a priori nature of Teleological Proofs.

I also (as always) would want other people talking, participating, in a higher level function. Co-editors. This is to keep me from dominating, and keeping the venture from being a monoculture. The only requirement is the ability to write (draw, whatnot, perhaps EXPRESS is the best word), and the lust to question things at their basis. Applications are open.

Any other suggestions?

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1 comment:

DarkWood said...

Hello. Well, I haven't been following this blog for very long and have to this point refrained from comment so I suppose I'm one of those irritants adding to the problem which is kinda funny since my whole reason for blogging is also to open discussion and encouraging independence of thought. Sorry 'bout that.

Seeing as you're interested in something of a community of freethinkers and such ilk, I would ask if you have encountered (or considered) Frequency 23? You might just find something akin to what you're seeking there. Just a thought.