Re: extropian memes in business week

Natasha Vita-More (
Sun, 19 Sep 1999 09:42:36 -0700

At 04:19 PM 9/19/99 +0100, you wrote:
>Spike Jones wrote:
>> Is Business Week on a roll, or what? 27 September issue, p.142, article
>> on directed evolution, lotsa cool extropian stuff. Having that stodgy old
>> publication present the memes makes them seem so much more
>> mainstreamy. I *guess* that is a good thing. (?) spike
>It's just proof of stagnation in our little group. We need new, more
>radical ideas and we need 'em fast.

Stagnation vs. Quick Fix: I don't see Business Week's article as a possible stagnation for extropians. It is a realization that society has been catching up.

Regardless, it is a good reminder to keep ahead, do our research, gain more knowledge, reexamine and expose information in unique and riveting ways, rather than trying to be radical - creating a quick fix - which could boomerang. What we can do is create a spin on our ideas and future possibilities that keeps pricking up the public ear. If we see ourselves as a little group, we can easily feel threatened. We are an orgainzation of people with big minds and big potential and we are spreading throughout the World. We are also addressing one of the most important topics for the World: biotechnology and molecular engineering.

Taking a look at the concept of stagnation, I've given this subject a lot of thought after someone close to me said, "You've been taking about these ideas for 20 years and now I see them on the covers of magazines, Scientific America, Time Newsweek, etc. The world is catching up and where are you?"

It was a realization.

The point is that memes are spouted and the either flourish or they die out. If the goal is to spread memes, then certainly they will infiltrate culture and take on their own life. This is what has happened with many extropian memes. And, this is good. We should be toasting ourselves for our successes as memetic engineers.

The other side of the coin is -- what do we do now?

Do we try every so hard to get more memes out - rush them out- exploit them - even create ones that are sloppy -- just to make sure we are on top and still the most radical meme-makers? *Or, do we use this very precious time to communicate effectively and claim our hard work in the pubic arena. Extropians are radical. But radical doesn't mean the we have to caused havoc on a perpetual basis. We fought hard for where we are now, and this is the time to be sensible about our ideas. We should be in the mainstream *while* maintaining our daring and original character. Society has caught up, indeed, but we need not feel downcast about this, we should celebrate and claim our position.


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