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May 16, 2007




Yes! I used to be concerned about this lack of originality - as a self confessed post modern construct I would deploy allusion and quotation with willful abandon and then wonder where in all these sources, was me?

But you nail it - it is the filter itself, the lens of sources and their combination and interpretation that are the original aspect. Genius Steals, not imitates, because imitation is disguising the debt you owe. Stealing is using the material differently, with acknowledgement.

Like Locke's recombinant imagination.

Bakhtin's heteroglossia is a fantastic insight and tool to decontruct different dialectics in any text, but when you dissect Eliot's Waste Land into it's sources, you lose the very thing the 'author' has done, which is pull them together, with a purpose in mind.

Ancient creativity was never original. Only The Tempest was Shakespeare's story, and even that is heavily based on rumours of the time.

The age of copyright changed all that. Now if a song has more than 9 consecutive notes you have to pay the 'original' rights. As Cory Doctorow has pointed out - this kills creativity dead.

What I love about the internet is the culture of building, sourcing, and remixing. We are bringing it back to how it should be.

Wow. I've never really discussed this over on TIGS. Maybe I should.


Cracking comment Faris, all makes sense this end.

On further reflection - as you do! - inevitably there will always be some ardent cultural determinists out there who will argue that even the filtering process itself is culturally prescribed ... but then my head really starts to hurt!

Yes, your above material is far too good to be gathering blogging dust in this already redundant comments section, a must for TIGS at some point mate!

In the mix,


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  • 1. Everything is cultural (nothing can step outside of cultural representation)

    2. Culture is the richest repository of innovation and brand development ideas

    3. Inspiration exists in everything (cf. Paul Smith)

    4. Branding is an art (but science can help)

    5. Strategy cannot be divorced from execution (overlook design at your peril)

    6. Complex problems have simple, easy to understand, wrong answers (cf. HL Mencken)

    7. Diversity and inconsistency keeps life interesting for people (thus everything about this blog is subject to change)

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