quinta-feira, outubro 30, 2014

The Look-at-Me Society

Sometimes it is difficult to find a title that fits the ambiance of a certain song. So, when a moderately interesting combination of words appears randomly in my head, I sometimes add it to a list of potential song titles. One of those was "The Look-at-Me Society".

I googled it just to see what appears. I came into this link, where several things that I often think are said. Some of them are related with premisses of this blog and to recurrent thoughts of this blogger. For instance:

"When I look around at the number of bloggers, tweets, wikipages, Facebook friends, and outlets for expression, it seems we've hit a crescendo of ‘look at me' activity, a striving for attention enveloping the globe. I often find myself caught in that web of self-promotion [...]"

Why do we do this? Where does this need for recognition/popularity come from? Why is everybody trying to shout to the world, trying to get his attention? It is not just "the economy, stupid", is it?

One of the premisses of this blog was to not spend any money in self-promotion. I would like this blog to become a sort of serendipitous finding, lost in the internet jungle, eventually to be discovered by some archeologist, much later, like Angkor. Yet... I do repeatedly post links to new songs in internet forums (or fora?) and I opened an exception to the rule of not spending money with advertising when I opened a Google Artist account (25$ - with unlimited uploads, it seemed reasonable). Why? From the same link:

"Why is seeking recognition so prominent in the West today? [...] Perhaps this striving has escalated because our numbers have grown so large. Being unique among 6 billion people requires a lot of work. Perhaps it is due to our praise of children for their uniqueness that may back-fire in adulthood when we notice how very much alike we all are. Perhaps it is merely our media access and newfound means of sharing ‘who we are' to everyone who will listen."

Another recurrent thought of this blogger is related to the effort of self-promoting: isn't it a waste of time? Shouldn't an artist concentrate on creating art? My feeling, for many years has been yes (especially if you are not a professional artist and do not have much time to develop art), despite my occasional posts in forums. Since the beginning, I also wanted to publish anonymously so as not to limit my process of creation. I was thus quite pleased to read the following in the same link:

"I once read a quote by a South American shaman who said he was ‘practicing the art of invisibility'. When queried by the writer as to why, he said that he could accomplish so much more from an invisible position than one of fame. I've wondered about that quote for a long time but think that part of the reason is that there is greater freedom to act when action is not tinged with attention-seeking. There is likely more energy available to effect change if one is not expending it on promoting oneself. [...] I think we all need to value anonymity a bit more. Perhaps if we do, we may find ourselves a little bit more content, happy and kind."

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