lotu5 on Thu, 2 Jun 2005 23:47:50 +0200 (CEST)

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Re: <nettime> post fordist tv

martin hardie wrote:
> Has anyone thought about this stuff?

I've thought somewhat about the way that shows like American Idol are so
closely tied to the culture of celebrity and how their draw is to offer
people a chance at that celebrity and pose it in such a way that anyone
has the opportunity to gain that celebrity, thus reinforcing the lie of
capitalism, that if you just work hard enough, one day you'll be rich
and happy and look just like people on TV. That if you just keep
trudging on through your misery, one day you may be on American Idol and
you'll be rich and famous!

As well as reinforcing the idea that competition is good because it acts
as a natural selector for the "best" while ignoring all the other
elements that play into that competition inreality like sexism, white
supremacy, media created notions of beauty, etc.

> The predominance of this sort of  TV seems to have some role in
> instilling a (phony ?) culture of sharing  which exists prior to and
> enabling one to compete in the market?
> Is this so far away from the way that free/open source software works
> within the broader economy???

There are a few important elements of Free Software that are very
different from reality TV. One being that Free Software is more
democratic in that your participation in the Free Software community
isn't based on decisions by staff at some megacorporation, its your
decision. Another is that Free Software work is often unpaid, and is
often done out a love for the work, instead of as a way to get to fame
and riches in the future. Most of the Free Software developers that I
know don't ever expect to get much money out of it. There is some
correlation, possibly, in the desire for fame, but I think that most
Free Software developers only want to be known by other developers.

Just some of my thoughts. I'd be happy to talk about this more off list.



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