Rachel: "People on the Internet can get angry about anything."
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A side note about the whole Angelina Jolie thing is that until a few years ago there was a really strong economic disincentive for women to get tested for the gene. If it was found, it would be part of their official medical history, and they could be charged much higher insurance rates. They had to hope that a male relative (ideally their father) would get the testing done, since it didn’t put men at risk and so wouldn’t affect their insurance rates. That’s no longer the case: Obamacare made the practice illegal.
ayeeeminniebit asked: Umm… how do you comment
Shout it into a bottle, screw on the lid real quick, and throw it into the ocean
Now’s as good a time as any to post this
Here is what I think, maybe: when a lot of people are doing something new, they probably don’t need to be told that the new thing is good or new. They already know that, otherwise they wouldn’t be doing it. But they do need to be told that just because something is new doesn’t mean it’s good. It could be bad, and it could be done differently. Pointing to good things as an example of the righteous path is one great way to do this. But pointing to everything and saying that it’s good in general seems pointless. Accurately describing the changes that are occurring, while saying who they’ll benefit and who they’ll hurt, is service enough.
Boosting the new thing will be done perfectly well by people with an economic interest in the new thing, and either the new thing will be accepted by everyone else, in which case no one needs to be expending extra energy talking about why it’s good, or it won’t be accepted and it’ll fall into obscurity, in which case nothing needed to be said at all. The major productive stance in relation to new things is either an inquisitive or a critical one, at least in a context where novelty is valued for its own sake. Promoting a new thing as a miracle solution to longstanding problems is like shouting about the value of life vests when you’re throwing one to a drowning man. It’ll sink or swim on its own.
With new things, proof of concept will always be far more powerful than a manifesto. Manifestos are good for raising money and getting gigs, but they’re pointing fingers, not nudging ones. The people with the money can promote their products perfectly fine without our help. Let’s save our energy for making the case that they could be doing it better.
davebloom asked: Hope this doesn't come off as nitpicking, but it's Breakwater, not Shearwater. "Release the Beast" does sound like a Jonathan Meiberg song title, though, which had me checking Shearwater track lists for a few minutes and trying to remember exactly how "Robot Rock" sounded.
Agh, thank you.