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A Guide For Socio-Political Bloggers to Survive The Extinction Event

Posted by intellisg on August 19, 2007

survive.jpgWhat’s the Dodo program again? – The proposition: that socio-political blogging accomplishes nothing because it’s sorely lacking in affirmative action.

This is gloss from a two part series, albeit with my own personal twist on how Socio-political bloggers can survive the extinction event. If you have not read the two part series please do so, as it will provide you the foundation to understand much of what I have to present in this article.

Part 1 and Part 2

This is my first attempt at “machine” writing with the kind guidance of my colleagues who have both been patient and very helpful to give me insightful tips. I has always been one of my dreams to write for the brotherhood press and this is a debut article.

The general theme is to tie in many of the loose ends mentioned in Part I and II of this series. Along with this I have also highlighted the importance of setting the right expectation, perspective and strategy for both blogger, readers and researchers if they are to thrive in this brave new age of the internet.

I hope all of you enjoy it. Happy Reading. Aurora.

Why “talk” isn’t just “talk” – it’s the first stage of setting the right expectation

Is talk just talk? Set this along side the definition of the term ‘usefulness’ and ‘effectiveness’ and it may appear to hold true. It implies the talking accomplishes nothing. Now if you take both these notions and superglue it together, it’s like saying vacuum cleaners are “useless” because they can’t clean up the mess in the world. That’s just dumb because I can say, that’s not what it’s designed to accomplish – though the word ‘cleaner than clean’ features in the marketing tagline. What remains clear is there is a big difference between sorting out one’s living room and the broader mess in the world.

This underscores the need to keep things in the right scale and perspective.

Having said that, it’s understandable why even blogger frequently fall into the trap of assuming blogging can change the planet. Perusing through the annals of human history of great expectations is hardly a new theme – remember alchemy? The art of transmuting lead to gold? What about the aqua vitae aka elixir of immortality? Or the quest for the holy grail?

As Darkness mentioned, every age aspires to carve out their own mythology to define ‘usefulness’ and ‘effectiveness.’

By the same corollary the digital age aspires to do the same only this time blogging is pushed to the pedestal and dressed up as the “great hope” to facilitate social, economic and political change. The case is strong only because its so ingrained in our psyche that to accomplish anything, we need to do something, it serves to fertilize and perpetuate the myth. That’s why the Dodo program is so dangerous when it’s juxtaposed against the whole preoccupation of blogging it’s often sold and marketed as a natural extension of what can and must be – this regrettably is the first stage that sets most social-political blogger up for the fall from grace – it set’s the wrong expectation!

You can skip evolution – babbling is the serious stuff.

One of the most serious omissions in the whole discussion of what blogging is supposed to accomplish in both the short and long run is a sort of denial which serves to elide wholesale our history as a nation. We’re not Americans. Neither did we go through the Renaissance or the tumult which shaped the collective consciousness which distinguishes the West from us.

According to Darkness based on a chart he drew out, if our collective consciousness is a living organism, it will probably resemble proto-Neanderthal man who has suddenly discovered how a oversize femur can split another apes head. That puts technology and humanity in the right scale whenever we speak about socio-political blogging in Singapore. The internet age may be just as new to the West as it is to us, but seen against this patchwork of our cultural history it was to be “newer” to us than them. Only because by virtue of our cultural gaps we are still wallowing in the primordial soup of figuring out basic stuff like how to accommodate the optimal humanity quotient with this new technology. In darkness words, it’s not so different from the hilarious scene in 2001 Space Odyssey, when the aliens suddenly appeared, as in this scene:

According to this math chart, form, structure and symmetry will continue to confound us. I didn’t understand it all, but I realized, if I asked too many questions, it would interrupt his thoughts so I just listened and pick out the parts that made sense to this article.

In a nutshell we are still like babies babbling away – it’s early days and that’s why its premature to expect great changes and this is why the expectation, blogging is supposed to even ‘change’ is nothing less than the femur making the great leap to a space ship.

In this formative stage talking fulfils the important function of harmonizing and converging collective thought to create something resembling a ecology that is uniquely Singaporean. According to darkness, he believes even those who are wise in our Government such as BG George Yeo have derived at this calculation. This he goes on to say is a very good start.

Whether it’s able to produce tangible results remains a non issue: the key at this stage of primacy is nourishing it and ensuring it develops coherently by cutting away radicalism, racism and all the undesirable aspects which may root itself during its primacy.

That’s one reason why when people say to me – “hey you bloggers just talk and do nothing, I say, OK, next time you’re on a flight, I’ve get my neighbors baby to land that commercial airliner – how’s that!”

So let’s get the right perspective.

Can talking really bring about change?

What then is the best way to survive the extinction event? What if I told you, if you did nothing except just blog and not even bother about saving the whales etc – you could have such a disproportionate effect on even facilitating real and meaningful change?

Don’t believe me?

Consider one of the most enduring myths: the assumption words and actions need to be coupled to really bring about meaningful change. Sorry not true! Not historically, not even mathematically or even statistically – not even remotely – if it did the Gutenberg press wouldn’t been the most effective means in human history to debunk the myth the world is flat as a pizza in less than a 100 years. In relative terms today, that’s a bit like flying from Changi to London in less than 3 minutes flat! I am not saying that you just need to write your way to get a car or house. Of course not, in some cases words needs to be completed with action like baking a cake or giving your dog a bath – only understand this in comparative terms the pen is mightier than the sword or to paraphrase talking is more powerful than action when it is brought to bear on schools of thoughts and states of mind.

Contrary to popular belief blogging isn’t anything near useless a caricature as it’s often depicted to be by either the MSM. For most of us it’s the only means by which civilized people regularly lay the foundation for fleshing out their ideas and sharpening them into effective tools for work, life and play. It’s hardly predation and if you think real hard about it, it’s simply an extension of the village square, where a community regularly congregates – for one real reason sometimes other than to tell others, they stand two inches taller if they don’t slouch. Or to even proclaim whole disquisitions of truths – for years mankind was always sought out this square, common ground or place. In our age, it exist in the virtual domain and here mankind is doing roughly the same as he has done through the ages – conversing, bartering, teasing along with the odd duel now and then followed by the occasional drama that rivets everyone.

[This part is from darkness which he expressed with a wan of sadness as he showed me his equations. I’ve never seen him so sad before when he share with me what he believed to be the inexorable end – the impending doom that even as he said, the brotherhood is not able to prevent] I am inclined to believe, those who lament bloggers can accomplish very little except talk have simply missed the whole point. Yes, I for the doer’s their goal to change the world is divine and even noble, but even they have to struggle against the odds: indeed who can disagree fairness and equality certainly makes winning case to get off your ass and do something. But it’s closer to bravado than accomplishing anything significant only because within than worldview lies a certain arrogance and ignorance concerning how the world really is. For one this erudite lot commit the sin of assuming – the “general audience” is an eclectic pool of decently educated people probably like themselves. Who can be induced, by strong enough reasoning and dialogue to even see the good they can offer. Truth remains not everyone shares their enthusiasm especially in an age where the temptation to seek instant gratification has never before being heightened to such a degree by technology. Neither can one assume they (the general audience) even have the patience to sustain an avid interest in socio-political affairs in an age where pleasure of the written word losing the on-going battle with the digital apotheosis of mass culture. It gives me no pleasure to demolish this myth of the general audience –the prospects are at best too bleak to even contemplate on a long term basis. I have modeled the outcome at least a dozen times and on every occasion the results remain the exactly same, that socio-political scene may even disappear one day completely.

That is why the message must go forth even if it lacks an imperative, rhyme or reason – as humans even we the statistical insignificant still have the hope for great expectations and this is something ants can’t do – to believe we will one day find a place called home.

I hope this has not been too long, I so wanted to make a good first effort.

Happy Reading

Aurora.

I would like to thank Darkness for spending a whole day with me, it has been a privilege sir!

Long live the brotherhood!

(This has been brought to you by your friend Brotherhood Controller, Aurora / Written by [lead] Aurora – Darkness / Vollariane / Cerebus / Memphisto / Prometheus / Politics Economics/ Sociology – ES 9908218D Part III – The Brotherhood Press 2007)

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36 Responses to “A Guide For Socio-Political Bloggers to Survive The Extinction Event”

  1. vollaraine said

    Bravo! And from all the boys in the council of the wise.

    Ora et labora!

    It has been a privilege!

  2. harphoon said

    It is good Aurora – long live the brotherhood!

  3. 130th said

    long live the brotherhood! – you do us proud Aurora. Go girl! You the only one in the brotherhood!

  4. KOHO said

    Forget the stat counter here. In the SLF, it’s alreasdy the No.1 read. Well done Aurora.

  5. terence_cao said

    Aurora,
    from the way you write and argue, you probably is a lawyer ? So is darkness ?

  6. As It Is (Sitis) said

    Fantastic first start, Aurora!

    It is really excellent. You have made it with just a single blow. For a moment, I thought I was reading Darkness’ work. You have a bit of his style and rhythm. The arguments are valid and reassuring. You are a real fast learner. Keep it up. Keep practicing and you may one day be even better than Darkness, as you are the only fair lady in the group.

    Tell Darkness not to be too sad. The socio-politico scene will last for another 100 years unless some big catastrophe struck the Earth prematurely. However, it will evolve. It will not look exactly like what it is today. It would be broaden and incorporated into a wider scope, such as Humanities. That is my humble attempt at prediction.

    So, keep it up, keep the engines going, Boys and The Girl!

    I remain yours always,

    AS IT IS!

  7. scholarboy said

    Aurora,

    that was great! No buts.You thought it through and it came clean and sharp – Machine writing can be a real challenge bc ego is always involved, keep at it, that’s how I manage it.

    I am very sure the rest were just hands off, I don’t see anyone here except maybe you not even darkness except maybe in the little bitty last part.

    Very well done, if you may allow me to say so, much better than my maiden effort by a factor of a hundred – kudos!

  8. tc said

    http://mollymeek.livejournal.com/162524.html

    another guide here. Good one.

  9. atomic monkey said

    Aurora,

    This hits the spot, the most important thing abt machine writing is team work, alot like formation flying, to close and bang, too far and you might as well write alone, you did very well.

    None of us even manage this level of proficiency on the first attempt, not even Harpy.

    Never ever thought I had to salute a lady. Here goes.

  10. Trajan said

    Aurora

    Frankly, I enjoyed this more than the two parter:

    I like the focus on three themes, setting the right expectation – I believe this is why the drop off is so high for socio-political bloggers – no one really bothered to dig deeper into the “expectation” part. This nail it tight.

    Secondly, the baby part where you mentioned the internet may be just as new to the Americans but it is has to be newer to us. Right on. Most of us are still figuring out red from green button, so this will be noted by not only bloggers but policy makers and researchers as well.

    Finally, I am very impressed by your first attempt at machine writing, its never easy, for everyone who tries formation flying the drop off rate abt 1 out of 20 – besides, to do it so well on the first attempt really puts the rest of us to shame including I might also add darkness himself.

    Very well done and welcome aboard.

  11. Aurora said

    “terence_cao Says:
    August 20th, 2007 at 12:29 am
    Aurora,
    from the way you write and argue, you probably is a lawyer ? So is darkness ?”

    Terence,

    You are absolutely right, I am a lawyer. My area of speciality is in International law and arbitration (LLM).

    Darkness however is not a lawyer – he is a technical man (Msc). I know he resents the term, but when he speaks, it comes clearly enough – very practical always with charts and graphs which none of us understands.

    He is an industrial specialist / scientist, what you call a planner or strategist – the sort of person who is often referred too in professional circles as “the diamond cutter,” if you need to turn around a loss making factory or manufacturing enterprise – he is the man who makes it all happen.

    He is also credited with holding at least 21 industrial patents that could be why creativity and innovation features so regularly as a theme in the BP.

    He also writes love novels and poems in his spare time which he successfully sells in the internet.

    Happy Reading

    Aurora

  12. Nacramanga said

    Great! It takes 6 months to train a ‘machine’ writer, you have studying on the side Aurora and to fly alongside the ASDF that isn’t easy, those guys r even better than darkness – Great!

    I really enjoyed this one and you have no idea how this one article sets the tone for the rest of us.

    It is very clear controller.

    Long live the brotherhood!

  13. Nacramanga said

    Aurora

    You shouldnt give darkness so much credit.,I dont see that looney any where in this article, except that ape that does the thing with his foot in the video. 🙂

    It’s all yours Aurora, all yours alone.

    The guild has arranged for the latest Nokia communicator to be sent to you along with a sat-link the com-sat reads:

    “God speed!”

    Meritocracy and scholarship has always been our way – great is great, no buts, if’s and maybe’s, just great Aurora!

    Nacramanga.

  14. terence_cao said

    Aurora,
    brotherhood so really comprises of many great talents.

    I do find Darkness fascinating given that he is a man of many talents and achievements.

  15. Bird of Prey said

    I know I am not supposed to even exist, but it’s great to see another machine writer.

    It gives me hope. I will go now. As I said, I am only a figment of all your imaginations and more.

  16. terence_cao said

    “Darkness writes love novels and poems” ?
    Never thought Darkness is so sentimental considering that his articles is provoking and controversial.

  17. darkness - Dear Valued Readers said

    To all,

    This is good, if you are new to blogging and it doesn’t even matter whether you aspire to be a food, movie or socio-political blogger this lays one of the most fundamental corner stones that will see u through the hard and tough times.

    Otherwise you will just go the Dodo way – I assure you, you will go that way!

    I do not consider this a first attempt effort, it’s too good – it ranks equal to any we have produced and even surpasses many of my own writings, current included, that is why I will not say well done Aurora. No need to quote me either, I added nothing to do this either, it was your work alone.

    The privilege has been mine.

    No need to say keep it up – u r already there flying with the ASDF!

    darkness 2007

  18. […] the Brotherhood Press decided to post their articles in the ‘comments’ section and I had thought it good if I […]

  19. sitis said

    Dear all readers,

    The BH Press has relocated to this site. Sorry for the inconvenience and late notification. We hope you will continue to visit us and please pass the word around to your friends.

    http://whatotherssay.wordpress.com/

    Thanks and much obliged.

    SITIS.

  20. […] 21Why Only Dummies Search For God in the Net? – A Cautionary TaleNational Day Rally 2007Aug 19A Guide For Socio-Political Bloggers to Survive The Extinction EventIs it the “end” for Socio-Political Blogging? – Nailing the Dodo, Part […]

  21. Lost said

    Please help to save the Sammyboys from extinction.

    http://sites.google.com/site/sbfbrotherhood/

  22. Y2K said

    Lost,

    I can broadcast this in our forums in APICS and ASICS. I believe many have migrated there.

    However, I believe a significant part accounting for the silence could be due to the writers guild protest action.

    I have noticed most threads are now down to zero comments. It’s bound to have an effect.

    Nevertheless, we will do what we can for Sammyboy.forum. We encourage diversity in the net.

    Reg

    Y2k

  23. michika said

    Y2K

    The writers guild protest is nearly one month old.

    I wonder Y2K do people like Darkness really know how he is actually destroying blogosphere with his mass walk out antics?

    If he doesnt like what Alex, Cherian, Bernard, Gerald and The Online Citizen are doing sit down and talk to them. I am sure they are reasonable people and they will be more than happy to say, ok what we are proposing if it goes ahead will not apply to you.

    The matter can be very easily settled, but this way, it is very tiring, most readers are fatigued, I am sickened by all this fighting. Everytime I log on. It makes me sick.

  24. Y2K said

    All the brotherhood want is to be left alone. I don’t think they are against community moderation per se.

    Only I feel everyone has a right to their space. If these ppl want community moderation no one is stopping them. Only there should be a provision where one can say, “I don’t want it. It doesn’t apply to me.”

    Let;s not complicate matters, its as simple as that.

    Y2K

  25. Y2K said

    All this extra talk is not doing a bit of good.

    Just provision an option, where ordinary bloggers can say, “we don’t see a need for it. we want out.”

    That I feel is more than enough. But if you notice, even that is too much to ask.

    I wonder when will this people really walk the talk.

    It is easy to write an article in ST and spin doctor it to come across as an enlightened being, but when it comes to walking the talk, you notice it is a different issue all together.

    Walk the talk. If you want freedom, diversity and people to take an interest, then don;t impose your values on them.

    It’s really very simple. Start there.

    Talk is cheap.

    Y2K

  26. Y2K said

    But if you dont leave them alone, you cant blame them, if they decide to bring the fight directly to their doorstep.

    That incidentally just happens to be part and parcel of diversity.

    You cant pick and choose your politics just bc it suits you.

  27. klim said

    Lets not work ourselves up into a frenzy. The PM recently in the ND speech mentioned specifically “opening” is the “right way” to go. So lets not go running up the wall and start taking a defensive position towards AIMS by rattling sabers.

    You know we all live in fear of Darkness, not because he is foolish, but he is so paranoid sometimes even the slightest suspicion can set off a chain reaction. And once it goes off, it just goes at full toss.

    I hope you will all remain calm and give Mr Cheong of AIMS a fair run.

  28. Lost said

    Y2K,

    Thanks for lending a helping hand.

    Michika,

    You might wish to think again who are the ones destroying the blogosphere – whose court the ball is in.

  29. FILB ARTICLE 13-8-08 said

    Dear valued readers,

    http://dotseng.wordpress.com/2008/08/12/the-fine-art-of-standing-proudly-naked-before-the-world-%e2%80%93-a-study-in-the-mufflement-of-the-humanities/

    This is the latest article reconstituted by the FILB.

    Find out whether “They” really hate Singapore.

    Enjoy

    Y2K

  30. FILB ARTICLE 16-8-08 said

    Title of Article:

    Education, Education, Education all around, but not a Brain around.

    Brief Excerpt:

    “Are we are already living in a sort of dystopian nightmare where we have ceased to examine the deeper meaning of education in Singapore?
    I am reminded, the cost can be exorbitantly high when droves of people can do nothing beyond applying what they have learnt.
    Engineers aren’t really engineers as much as they remain technicians; physicians aren’t really healers as much as they impersonate mechanics to repair human wreckage; and lawyers are nothing more than car coupon aunties who blindly follow the logic of black letter law.”

    To Read Click Here:

    http://dotseng.wordpress.com/2008/08/16/education-education-education-all-around-but-not-a-brain-around/

    (This has been brought to your by the FILB – The Free Internet Library Board based in Primus Aldentes Prime – The Brotherhood Press 2008)

  31. shoestring said

    So, am I right to say they are trying to provoke a holy war at Singapore Daily to justify community moderation and anti-anonymity?

    Ah, yes, what is this Speaker’s Corner in cyberspace? Does that mean we can only talk at one corner? Which corner is it?

    Why must some people be so kay kiang to submit this and that and cook up such a mess?

  32. Mr Brown said

    Just dropped in to say this is a great article, education, education etc @ above. Just another question, why dont you people stay in one place and just grow it?

  33. hello kitty said

    “So, am I right to say they are trying to provoke a holy war at Singapore Daily to justify community moderation and anti-anonymity?”

    I have a bad feeling abt all this. Bfr aims came in. They had begun to set fire to many of their precious links that once united their readers to them. Many of these links are really like highways. They were built with alot of dedication and love by people who were really passionate about connecting people.

    I have always wondered why would ppl burn things they love so much? What could possibly make them so afraid that they will even hide like frightened animals?

    it is very sad to see this.

  34. shoestring said

    Well, what would a sensible man do if he knows there is a Tsunami coming? I do not think they are cowards. It is a wise move. In fact, it shows they have their readers’ interests at heart. Imagine what could have happened to their readers if they had left the digital footprints intact and untouched. They cared enough to destroy what they lovingly built.

    Wouldn’t that be a more positive perspective?

    As for anonymity and abuse. I don’t buy the argument that anonymity is susceptible to abuse and therefore lack credibility. It’s crap.

    Is everyone whom we know credible? Aren’t there people who abuse their positions in the ‘Who’s Who’ list in the known world? Aren’t there people who pull strings by throwing names around?

    And if the Brotherhood aren’t credible because they are anonymous, why are they considered ‘leaders’ who are supposed to set an example? Would anyone follow their lead if they aren’t credible? Why were folks at AIMS so eagerly courting them? That is one reason why I have given up on TOC articles and comments.

  35. Mr Brown said

    “I have a bad feeling abt all this. Bfr aims came in. They had begun to set fire to many of their precious links that once united their readers to them. Many of these links are really like highways. They were built with alot of dedication and love by people who were really passionate about connecting people.”

    My grandma once shared with me an old shanghainese old wife’s saying.

    A mother who smolders her baby does so only because she sees the end of the world and usually this happens when the enemy is knocking the gates and she knows neither heaven or hell can stop it. It is the hardest thing to do. Not something for the faint hearted to do. She saw the Japanese march in Malaya.

    I understand now. I do. But it makes me sad. Very sad indeed. Though I do not really know them. I know it takes alot to destroy the thing one once loved with all their hearts and to see it die.

  36. jimmy teh said

    Hello,

    I heard the brotherhood is looking for mathematicians and stat people. To do some research. This is what is plastered around the grapevine. I want to volunteer my services for free. Have been trying to connect with them, to no avail. Does anyone know how we can establish a meeting

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