I’m musing this eve on narcissism and its colonization of western cultural values. I’m thinking about the whole on line proliferation of easy access to self promotion and its fracturing of the self.
Identity has become fluid, coursing thru the bits and bytes, spawning multi representations of moments along our own personal timelines, thru photoblogging, self confession, self expression…
… given unbelievable latitude and longitude..
( ha! think cock pics)
In the lifetime of the average blogger here, the majority between 30 and early 50’s..technology has created a world wherein we have become our own front page headline, our own press and paparazzi, capable of extending our virtual viral vibes into the eyes and minds of a multitude, our reach, global.
The scale boggles the mind, if we stop to think about it.
But given the intimate settings from which many of us write, our own dens, living rooms, bedrooms, ect, do many of us really STOP to think about it?
I think perhaps we have become more cynical and jaded as a result, more isolated in our social contact, if we define social time as time spent offline, face to face, flesh to flesh.
Many people spend their working hours in office cubicles or oout tof the home, and then their spare time surfing..
We have developed new skill sets to deal with cyber intimacy, whether it be friendships with those of like affinities, or
lovers….we have sharpened our abilities to write of self as object,as our lives as quasi fiction..magical realism genre..as ourselves as brands.
Are we narcissists as per the old definition? Consumed by self?
Or is that definition somehow wanting, is there some new take, that perhaps sees liberation and the good in the democratizing of free speech, the democratizing of business, the extension of potential and reach beyond narrowly defined geographical and financial boundaries?
I’m not knocking the web, I am all over it, but at what point is it all over me?
I have always spoke to collective social values.
We built a nation on it here in Canada..we tend to the collaborative rather than the competitive, this however is rapidly altering.
I myself, remain collaborative in approach, reclusive though I may be at times, and solicitious of my own privacy in ways that may not be readily visible.
I spoke to Lucifer of my thoughts on this, and he had some interesting points to make which continue to flesh out this bird’s eye view of the topic..
The net is perhaps not unlike the splitting of the atom, can be used for unimaginable good and evil..neutral in itself if you take a post modern approach. Have we become as mini gods, fallen headlong into our own ever elusive images to the detriment of our worlds, or have they exploded expotentially?
This is not a new pattern that is emerging or has emerged, we're, an intelligent race, have been broadcasting our selves long before Ben Franklin printed a news paper. However started with Ben Franklin as an official form of public media, not everyone had access to a press, nor Franklin, to advertise their services, wares or offers, but as ingenuity in humankind progressed the print form of media began to grow, and provide access to those people who had something to sell, share or talk about...including themselves. The marketing of self is as old as history can record, there has always been a hawker, yelling to sharpen your blade, or shoe your horse. Sign makers were told what the sign should say about Mary the seamstress and this has not changed no matter how we evolve, what has changed is that technology allows more access for the same behaviors...and reaches more people. From the print media to the radio, from the radio to the television. Television expanding as megahertz grew and communications grew, along with the cheapening of costs to make these marvels of modern technology, so it comes to pass that the oldest of gratuitous marketing behaviors became more and more creative, more and more revealing and more and more received. The net is only the next step in this typical human pattern of sell, sell, sell...and it isn't only capitalism, it is selling one's life for the shear joy of being able to obtain attention, it is the selling of ideas and beliefs but it is no different when Franklin started printing the first Philadelphia Newspaper some 200 years ago, and the reality to that is, we as a species have always found a way long before Franklin to market what ever it is we had to say. Is it all a genetically predisposed narcissisim? Not by definition, but who doesn't enjoy some type of positive attention? We will evolve further in technology, to a point where maybe we will no longer need to leave our homes to attain physical gratification, just slip on the cyber suit and get laid from translation of data. Maybe we will have the replication devices that make food from atoms, like in Star Trek, there is no telling what the future will bring, but to believe that the internet has proliferated this behavior is a mistake...we have been doing it since man scrawled on a cave wall... *
Musings from Lucifer and the cat