Paying attention.

20 11 2008

  My item the 9th, the Urban Dictionary, is a cool site.  I think it is important in the context of information repositories because of its irreverence, its shock value.  If we accept that the ‘build it & they will come’ ethos is bunk, then we must figure out ways to expose repositories to people.  If the repository is intended for use by the general public, or a part of the GP, a subculture, then one has to find ways to reach them.  In addition, once one has reached the intended population, one must convince them to actually go to and use the repository. 

  I am against appealing to the lowest common denominator so hard.  I am against hype-marketing hard as well.  I think this is because the products that use these things are trying to promote the worst things, unhealthy food, horrible movies, detrimental things in general.  So, might it be ok to rub up against those two forms of promotion if one’s product is ‘good?’  Might it be ok to intentionally place controversial or irreverent items in the collection to get some promo?  Assuming, of course, that the contovo/irrev item(s)  ‘legitimately’ belong in the collection.  That is to say, puting pictures of the FBI’s corpse garden in a repository for books made into films would not be ‘legit.’  Though, putting those pictures in a collection about genocide would be acceptable, even though the FBI’s corpse garden has nothing to do with genocide.

  So, mightent one have to do things one finds distasteful if one wants to get one’s IR known and used by the people who it is created for?  I think maybe one must.  But then again, I am very suspicious of ‘best sellers’ or movies that are ‘top grossing.’  That isn’t to say that I do not like any, I do.  But, when a favourite band or author has an album/book that comes out and goes platinum/best seller, I suspect that they have lost their artistic/creative integrity, that they have sold out, when before I had wondered why their albums/books didn’t sell more copies b/c they were so good.  While I wish for the artists I like to do well, I am immediately suspicious of them when they do.  I think a little of that struggle exists in many IR creators.  They want the IR to be used by people and to be popular but, only by the population it is intended for, only by those who deserve the IR, not the unwashed masses. 

  I guess what I’m saying is that, perhaps we need to come down off our high horse/ivory tower and let the thing be used.  Used by anyone, deserving or un.




One response

20 11 2008


As usual, it’s killing me that you’re wasting this:


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