Posts Tagged ‘originality’

I’ve often heard it said by people trying to make me feel better when others steal my ideas, my looks or whatever it may be, that “imitation is the sincerest form of flattery”. Sweet as that may be, I still want recognition damn it! If someone decides I had a stroke of genius and wants to use it for themselves, then hey, great, inspiring people is fun and worthy. But when they do it without any reference to me in any place whatsoever I get a bit hmmm, and when they do it without even saying to me privately “hey, thanks, that was neat, I’m going to totally use that!” I get slightly louder with my hmmmms.

Just to clarify, I’m not talking about thieving my art work or verbatim postings, because that wouldn’t be just hmm-worthy, that would be theft and deserves an entire blog post to itself. And a law suit. We like law suits. And I’m not talking about people who are mildly influenced by things I do and find their own original slant on it, because that’s simply the process of creativity. I’m talking about the people who pass my notions or concepts off as their own own without any attempt at recognizing my original input. This is particularly irritating when it leads people to think my own idea lacked originality or was copied from that other person since they lack context about who did what first – it undercuts my efforts and makes me look like a sheep rather than an original person and thinker.

When it happens I hardly ever complain out loud though, what’s the point? They haven’t done anything illegal, they’ve just crossed a point of politeness essentially. And if you do complain people get defensive of the person you’re complaining about “aww, they’re just struggling to come up with their own ideas, give them a break” or “aww, are you sure that idea which is exactly like your own with extremely minor deviation which came about immediately after yours was presented or expressed, is really taken from you..?”, or that pet favourite “aww, they must like you and think you’re neat, how flattering.” Psh.

So I just suck it up and grumble ever so quietly and tend to think less of these people. Not simply because of lack of originality – we all struggle a little bit now and then for inspiration, I’m sure – but because they refuse to acknowledge, neither privately nor publicly, where that immediate and direct inspiration came from. Taking the credit for themselves and leaving me feeling unappreciated and a tad used.

Perhaps they are unaware of how I have impacted on them, perhaps. Maybe. Possibly. But when it keeps happening over and over ya start to wonder don’t cha. Yes you do.


(And don’t ask me who I’m grrr at cause I won’t tell you, for the reasons outlined above. I just had to get that off my chest. Chest cleared. Amen.)

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Gestures and Spam

Ahh the joy of SL gestures. At the push of a button you can convey a happy noise, a funny phrase with in-joke groundings, an emotion, a whatever… but why would you. No really, why would you. SL is principally about communication for most of us – we type what we want to share and we read what people share back, so why would you take a stock phrase and use it over and over instead of communicating in a genuine and sincere and original manner? Why not push yourself just that little bit more to come up with a personalised and clever sentence instead of a button push?

I include in my frustration the green spam you get from people’s body parts when they are clicked, and toys when they are clicked, again pre-created phrases that fill the screen and add essentially nothing at all to the conversation. You can’t take credit for the cleverness of the phrases most times, and even when you did come up with them originally why use them over and over..?

There is novelty value in such things, but that’s the point right: novelty. Once it’s no longer new, where’s the attraction? There’s also the in-group aspect of some gestures, such as “everyone in our group uses and understands this gesture, it’s part of who we are”, which again, fine to an extent, but even this gets quickly tiring and becomes spam that you wish your eyes didn’t have to bother with.

The clubs full of people shouting out hoo and airhorn are in the same category as green spam to me, they convey no information or amusement. But maybe that’s just me, guess it must be. I don’t think I’ll ever be someone who goes “so that’s why we keep hitting that button for that sentence, I get it now!”. Having said that, I am not 100% innocent myself, I use hoo and aah now and then. But I always prefer to type “great song” or “tune” or “I love this one” or “hi honey” or “what the hell, why are you a giant green penis in a frock”. It’s good to be specific and personal. Don’t you think..?

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