RE: virus: C of V: Another Religion

Dave Pape (
Sun, 2 Feb 1997 21:49:43 GMT

At 16:55 01/02/97 EST, David Rosdeitcher wrote:

> Here are some reasons why I think that cyberspace is a forum where good ideas
>outcompete bad ones.

Can you please define "good idea"?

I take what I hope is a memetic definition of "good idea": a meme which is
very effective at getting a stake in many people's mental processing
resource. Thus the large-scale meme "Judaism" is a "good idea", because it's
got a decent stake in a great many minds.

I think you're likening "good" to "rational" here, and I differ with you
greatly on this point. Have a look at

and then check out the Mind Control Forum (I think it's linked off this
site, otherwise AltaVista will get you there) pages.

These are pages where people who sound like paranoid schizophrenics are
using the communications potential of the web to decide, between them, why
they all hear voices in their heads. One of the subscribers has found a
strange 1960's research paper which claims to describe how to project
auditory perceptions directly into a brain, at distance, without using
sound. All the MCF contributors with Voices love this "evidence", and seem
to be negotiating what very likely is a shared psychosis to explain their

My interpretation of this goes:

The Net is a great communications tool, allowing people to discuss ideas
with peers all over the world. But it hasn't made the MCF contributors'
explanations of their perceptions any more rational. It's just helping them
be more consistent (throughout their group) in terms of how they explain
their world.

The Net allows non-rational, as well as rational, ideas to propagate more
broadly and quickly than before. It does NOT, in and of itself, select in
favour of rational ideas.

Dave Pape
The memetic equivalent of a G3 bullpup-design assault rifle blowing a full
clip at my opponent. (Alex Williams 1996)

Phonecalls: 01494 461648 Phights: 10 Riverswood Gardens
High Wycombe
HP11 1HN