Mailing Lists

CobraBoy! (
Thu, 26 Feb 1998 10:28:53 -0800

Mailing lists are wierd things. I don't know how others see them, but I see
them as a microcosm of society. Someone should do a paper on them. Tracking
something like FoRK is a good example, having gone from true "friends" of
RoRo, to a loose knit group of shared mentality of members of FoRK.

A couple of things that I notice however. And again I suppose this pertains
to society in general. People seem to take these things way to personal.
Granted it's your investment in time to read an e-mail. However if
something or someone disagree's with you so what? It seems amazing the
degree that people will go to turn a simple thing into the equivelent of a
life threatening situation.

Now I know what your thinking. "What did you do CobraBoy?" And this isn't
about me. It's just something that I've noticed. And I think that it goes
to the heart of modern societies dysfunctionality. I'm currently involved
with a Dr. of Psychology on a project. And the Dr wants nothing more than
to get out of her profession of counsling people. Because she can't handle
the total dysfunctionality of society. People come to her, tell her their
problems, she offers her professional opinion, and they don't change their
behavior and continue repeating their same patterns. Then they continue to
complain about their problems.

The other thing that I've noticed is people's total lack of any form of
humor. Maybe it's just me and the fact that I grew up watching Monty Python
and lived in England. If you write something (and for all intents say
something) if it isn't Jim Carrey in your face jokes or stupid little <G>
people don't get it. Name one comic working today that offers a subtle
intelligent humor?

For that matter while I'm venting here, name one artist. One fine artist.
Did Andy Warhol kill them all? Can no one better Mark Kostabi?

And this is my point. Society has lost the ability to look at life with
broad strokes. I purposfully post with what many consider vague subject
titles. It isn't because I can't write a descriptive title, it's because
the beauty of human life is coloring in the book. Filling the blanks. By
understanding or trying to understand something that isn't in memo form
maybe you learn something about yourself. Brain Eno once said that good art
prepares you for life, becase it takes you outside of your current
limitations. So when a situation occurs in life you, by your exposure to
great art have the abilty to handle that situation better.

Wait, I'm having an attack of Deja Voodoo here....

Ok, I'm back. Anyway, my point is unless we as a society start to get back
to the appreciation of things human things are just going to continue
towards a more dysfunctional society, and totaliarian government. Because
if we as a society lack the ability deal with to human behavior, the
government will regulate it for us.

And what started all this is the point that mailing lists are a microcosm
of society.



The Deliverator belongs to an elite order, a hallowed subcategory. He's got esprit up to here. Right now he is preparing to carry out his third mission of the night. ...Snow Crash, Neal Stephenson

<> <>