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31 August 2009 @ 09:31 pm
social dynamics  
what is the impulse to share our experiences, this modern phenomenon of blogging, profiles, and twitter updates. surely the manifestation of an impulse that's always been a part of the human experience, but evolving along a branch that is both more and less social than ever before.

why do i feel so ambivalent about it? i used to post to message boards a lot, before i had a livejournal. for me, the impulse to share in this way has always been, but as i get older, i do less and less of it. it is, i think, for the most part, just discouraging.

i kept a private journal as a kid, and sporadically jotted things down as i got older, but generally, i think it's more of an exchange that i'm interested in than to just babble about myself. it's just so rarely worked out that way. i even find myself considering who might be reading what i post, and trying to stay relevant and accessible, or something of that nature, but that doesn't go so well either, and i end up with lots of posts that just bore even me.

i don't even know what i want. sure, there's some ego stroking involved, wanting to scrape together the bits and pieces in a way that will make me look cool - that is, interesting, or witty, or whatever it is that might achieve that sort of positive result - but there's also the uniquely human element of wanting to see ideas built upon eachother, in some sort of cooperatively constructive way.

while back i was watching a show about chimps and language and social evolution, and how it is that sort of exchange that sets us apart. i dare say, it doesn't set all of us apart, but at least some of us. the impulse to go beyond simply socializing, as many animals do, into a dynamic that breeds innovation via learning from each other.

for me though, i think something gets mangled along the way, as i seem to end up just talking to myself so very often. which just seems somehow less constructive.