Friday, July 5, 2013

Perils of a Keyword Culture

I had a thing in mind to write about today, but something happened.

In my post from Wednesday, I wrote, in part, about my distaste for e-readers, like the Nook and Kindles. As is my usual practice, I "tweeted" that article for my Twitter and my Facebook H&R followers on my blog's "off" day. Of course, Tweets are public, unless you set them not to be so. I hash-tagged my "tweet" (good God, it feels ridiculous using this terminology) with "#kindle"; therefore, it was seen by "Kindle Review" --  a Twitter account that, it seems, promotes and reviews Kindle products.

Well, the Kindle Review "favorited" my post.

Did they read it? Or, did they just see #kindle as a hash tag and "favorite" it automatically? I think we both know the answer to that.

If they had read my piece, they would have known that if more people like me were in the world, their site would have no raison d'etre. Nope. It is all about sharing, these days -- all about networking with the community. [insert robot movements here]

And, maybe, here lies is the key to a paradox I have been feeling ever since I started chirping my anti-community sentiments. I speak, all of the time, about individualism and against the compulsive need people seem to feel for "community" and "sharing" everything, yet I write a blog. Let's face it: every writer of a blog is trying to gather a "community" about him. But this little Twitter incident helped my to unravel the paradox.

The problem is community without thought. A community without thought or philosophy is a community without any real glue. The proliferation of superficial communities is a clouding of what it means to interact with people (even with people of like interests) in any meaningful way.

I, too, want to follow Modern Drummer on Twitter and, thereby, to keep informed as to the latest drumming gadgets and techniques. But the day that Modern Drummer blindly "retweets" an article that presents the reasons why drummers ought to be replaced by machines, simply because the writer "hash-tagged" his post with "#drumming", is the day I seek my drumming information elsewhere.


  1. "...since I started chirping my anti-community sentiments."

    Pun intended?

  2. I'd just savour that delicious irony get back to my book-sniffing, but that's just me. I'm a sarcastic cuss.

    1. It's what I like best about you, 'nora -- your sarcastic book-sniffing cussossity. I'm going to take you advice and go inhale some old Twain.