Thanonymity and Thelf-promotion

BCC has officially decided that permas will no longer post. Instead, you’ll be subjected to a constant stream of guest posts, such as this one from Theric.

.

I was on the AML blog last November declaring that

One of the reasons we want people’s real names for the bylines in Mormons & Monsters is because it’s time for us as artists to own up to our culture, our art, our heritage, our faith, our contradictions, our words, our selves.

Time to stop hiding.

The next comment accused me of hypocrisy, to which I could only think “What? What? What? DON’T YOU KNOW WHO I AM???”

I am Theric. I thought you knew that.

Now, I’m not a heavy commenter here at BCC because I hate joining already overlong conversations, but if you hangout in the Bloggernacle you may have noticed my Th. tag upon a comment here or there. But I’m not an anonymous person: I just play one on the Internet.

Clicking the link attached to Th. on any comment will take you here which has my name-name in its full legal glory. See, I’m not anonymousish because of some deep-seated dread over being recognized (though I suppose my faux anonymity is buffer enough should A Casual Enemy go looking for me) — in fact, I need to be Very Easy To Find in my other capacity as editor/author/professionalawesomaker. And as a loudmouthed evangelist for Mormon art, I stand by my thanonymous statement above:  it’s time to own up to our culture, our art, our heritage, our faith, our contradictions, our words, our selves.

Which is the reason I’m going to pretend I was asked to guest here and not simply because John C. thinks Thumblr. is amusing.

See, when he first asked me to guestpost on BCC, he said, barring better ideas, even talking about how I feed Thumblr. could be sufficiently entertaining. Which was interesting. Because Thumblr. is the only online abode of mine followed by my wife. So clearly I’m finally doing something right. (John C. finds my captions religious. This terrifies me.)

My first (permanent) online home was Tehachapiltdown Man (now Thmazing’s Thutopia), founded back in 2005 when personal blogs were still getting started. Now they’re nearly dead. Unless you’re a Really Big Deal, comments strings don’t really get going so much on personal blogs anymore. The discussions happen on Facebook or Twitter or Buzz. They’re fragmented. They can’t overcome inertia.

While discussions on Facebook and Twitter build more speed and are more successful at gathering participants, I miss the days when your comments were waiting for me at my own doorstep.

And so, in this unfavorable environment to the lone blogger, we assemble on the bigger blogs (my usual home: A Motley Vision, not one of the bigger bigger-blogs, but bigger than Thutopia and, note the theme, focusing on Mormon arts) and there we can still have a contained experience where community exists.

Don’t get me wrong, I like Facebook and Twitter for what they are, but something like the comments on BCC are special.

So go ahead. Leave a comment. Celebrate yourself, o commenter. It is you who gives blogs meaning.

In my next post though, count on more with the Mormon arts.

Comments

  1. something like the comments on BCC are special.

    I’d like to point out quickly here that Theric did NOT say that a) the BCC commenters themselves are special, or even b) that the BCC comments are absolutely special. He only said that something like is special.

    So don’t get all full of yourselves, people!

  2. Dang it!

  3. Eh, close enough for me.

    THERIC THINKS I’M SPECIAL!!! :D

  4. Thanks Scott. Nothing like being shown your mediocrity in a comment thread.

    Hey, on personal blogs there still can be discussion, I have just found it to be quality over quantity. Just a thought.

  5. Amber,
    It’s vital that we permas suppress the masses, lest we face a revolt.

  6. I’m a noob.
    I don’t get it.

  7. WaMo, there is deep and important(?) history here. Trust Scott to guide you through the doo-doo.

  8. I’m not sure I get what WaMo doesn’t get.

    However, this sentence in the OP is interesting:

    back in 2005 when personal blogs were still getting started. Now they’re nearly dead. Unless you’re a Really Big Deal, comments strings don’t really get going so much on personal blogs anymore. The discussions happen on Facebook or Twitter or Buzz. They’re fragmented. They can’t overcome inertia.

    While discussions on Facebook and Twitter build more speed and are more successful at gathering participants, I miss the days when your comments were waiting for me at my own doorstep.

    This is a very similar sentiment to one I have expressed behind the scenes to several co-bloggers, but never managed to write an actual post about: The “Like” button is killing blogs, because it is killing comments. It’s not the actual discussions on FB that replace blogging–it’s a new venue for blogging, that’s all. However, the “Like” button has replaced our collective willingness to type a comment that says, “Thanks. This was great.” While those comments aren’t the major source of brilliant discussion, they are the grease that gets the wheels moving, because comments attract comments. Every post is like an empty dance floor–until someone shows up and busts a move, even if it’s just to say “Thanks for this,”, it’s likely to stay empty.

  9. @#8

    +1!

  10. Like!

  11. Scott, I disagree. The like button allows voices to be heard, even if people don’t comment. I think stats are a much better indicator of what is going on behind the scenes as our lives are busy!!!

    P.S. You cannot suppress the masses. I am sure Marx explained that to everyone.

  12. Amber,
    My opinions are based on stats.

    Also, Marx was a douche.

  13. I don’t know what Groucho did to get on Scott’s bad side. Of course, I’m not familiar of anything related to him that speaks of suppressing the masses.

    One morning I shot an elephant in my pajamas. How he got into my pajamas I’ll never know.

  14. Umm… so we commenters are special, but I’m worried which category I could fall into.

    good special: unique, extraordinary

    bad special: mentally not all together intact

    Back to the subject—what that might be is still being determined—I think a good celebration of commenters might be found in the following. May we never end up “there.”

    http://bycommonconsent.com/2008/01/23/banned/

    And, I look forward to the day when a proper Facebook replacement is put in place. The like button just doesn’t do it for me. It’s so impersonal… but public…

  15. Steve Evans says:

    B.Russ — Richard, not Groucho.

  16. Right, Josh B. I think that “special” can be non-Mormonspeak for “sweet spirit” as well.

  17. Steve Evans says:

    #14, there is one commenter – -who I shall not name — who enjoys a special place in the hearts of the permas. The mere mention of him warms us to the core and makes each of us do a happy dance. If you too know of whom I speak, go and do thou likewise.

  18. I don’t know what Groucho did to get on Scott’s bad side.

    B.Russ — Richard, not Groucho.

    B.Russ, Steve is right. Richard wasn’t always on my bad side, but he just kept offending me.

  19. Are you suggesting Josh move to West Hollywood?

  20. Steve (17),
    It’s the Oracle!

  21. B.Russ,
    You of all people know who we’re talking about. In fact, your very first day at BCC coincided with his, iirc!

  22. Steve Evans says:

    Atreyu!!!!!!!!

  23. 17, Aw, shucks, Steve. I didn’t know I’d made such a complete conquest.

    (Somebody had to make the obvious joke. I sacrifice myself to it.)

  24. Steve Evans says:

    Ardis, you’re spectacular, but you are as the light of the sun compared to the multi-star supernova that is this former commenter.

  25. I always had my suspicions that “Right Here Waiting” was not a love song, but in fact a treatise on class struggle.

  26. If you speak of he who walks with dusty feet, it wasn’t in fact my first day. But it was close.

  27. Steve Evans says:

    DO NOT SPEAK IDLY OF HIS GREAT DUSTNESS, B RUSS

  28. I speak with only the greatest reverence and humility.

  29. Thus saith The Great One:

    Before I leave entirely I thought I would do more research on what the blogging thing is all about since I have not participated in a blog before. In researching this particilar site, here is what I found:

    “We seek truth, reason, and honesty with our perspectives on faith. … BCC is a place of charitable discussion for everyone…”

    This is a claim that my efforts here to share my perspective of truth, etc., as an active and faithful Latter-day Saint would be handled in a charitable manner.

    This is a commitment that the spirit of Nicodemus would be a governing spirit here. Even though Jesus posed a very significant challenge to him and his brethren, Nicodemus put truth and honesty above all else and patiently received and tried to understand the difficult things that Jesus had to tell him. This spirit is the same spirit that Moroni advocates all seekers of truth should employ and that this spirit is indeed the Holy Spirit that leads a person to know the truth of all things.

    It is this Spirit that a person must have in order to abide the presence of God (all truth). If anyone comes into the presence of God and they do not have this Holy Spirit (of meekness), they will not be able to abide His Presence and inherit the earth with Him when He comes. Eternal Life is only for those few. As Jeffrey R. Holland warned, the hearts of men shall fail them. As Jacob teaches in chapter 6, a failed heart is spiritual death “Yea, today, if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts, for why will ye die?”.

    We are at a time when the King-Messiah from the House of Joseph (the Branch) is due among us at any time to redeem Zion and usher in the Kingdom of God in its full glory. (See D&C 113) This time around Messiah is here to attain victory and all of His foes will meet their demise by the wrath of God being poured out upon them. The Stem was “stumped” and the Rod was “broken” but the Branch will obtain victory. Those who will not hear this prophet shall be “cut off”. His bow shall be made strong by the mighty One of Israel to defeat all his foes.

    I plan to be on the side of meekness (which should not be confused with weakness) in hearing out all and conforming to what is actually written in the oracles of God that my attention is drawn to so that I will for sure see and recognize Him when he comes. In turn, I also advocate all Saints doing likewise. Eternal Life is right on our doorsteps if we prove faithful when He comes. The most trying and difficult times are here to prove out who is truly worthy of Eternal Life with God. It’s not a walk in the park where light-mindedness is going to serve you well.

    Nicodemus could abide the presence of God because of his meekness and sobriety. But, most could not abide His presence and accused him of being filled with the spirit of Beezelbub instead. This same spirit ultimately led them to crucify Him rather than be saved by Him. This site purports to function with the Holy Spirit governing its affairs, but my experience has proven quite the contrary. What I have experienced here is the very spirit that crucifies truth. All those who participated in this who are Elders or High-Priests are headed to Perdition if they do not cast out that spirit and receive the spirit of meekness in its place. Only in this manner can they remove their veil of unbelief and blindness from the precepts of men.

    If this blog started out with charity, it seems it has now morphed into an animal with a very different spirit. Rather than my challenge being received with the spirit of Nicodemus who truly tried to understand the Savior despite how sorely he was challenged by Him, the spirit of the people congregated here are more akin to the covenant people to whom Samuel the Lamanite delivered a much needed chastisement. He was met with arrows zinging past his head. All of their arrows missing Samuel is a representation of how all of the verbal arrows hurled at me here in this blog were met with imperviousness as John C. very aptly pointed out. I’m 100% certain Abinadi was viewed as a troll too. He even went to the extent of using costumes and disguise to get back in the door and go another round to try and save that wicked and fallen people. Fortunately there was Alma who heard his words before he was cruely burned to death by that wicked people.

    There was even a period of time that men inspired of God to testify to the people of their wickedness and blindness were privily being “taken out” by those who had been judges and high priests. That same spirit is here to a very alarming degree. It is much less of a stretch than most people realize to go from verbal arrows to physical arrows. This blog is on a trajectory to treachery.

    It appears the policy here considers brazen rudeness, false impersonation, insulting, etc. to be “necessary evils” of “troll management”. Those who perform this “service” are allowed to continue with impunity while those such as myself who genuinely wish to contribute in a respectfully challenging manner are “taken out” by them. Where is the charity in that policy? There is none! This is an abomination with strange bedfellows to supposedly meet a “righteous purpose”.

    Thus, due to this blatent hypocrisy, if the administration of this site does not bring about correction, starting with a post to this thread responding to this post vindicating it and rededicating this entire blog to conform to their stated purpose and method, then upon my departure I shall remove the dust of my feet even as Alma and Amulek did with regard to the people of Ammonihah.

    This post must remain public until I consent to its removal. To remove it will be considered by me as the administration undertaking to cover their hypocrisy. They may save face to the outside world but my “dusting off the feet” shall rest upon them and they will in time, just like King Noah and just like the people of Ammonihah, reap their reward.

  30. So correct me if I’m wrong, but celebration of commenters and mocking of commenters is the same thing, right?

  31. Steve Evans says:

    It’s a work-in-progress, Josh.

  32. #29: Ah, memories.

  33. Josh B.,
    I want to say you’re wrong, but it would be partly untrue. My favorite memories at BCC are almost all commenter-based. Some of them are from times when I’ve been inspired; others have been when someone was Kerrrrazy. Without one of these, the experience wouldn’t be the same.

  34. edit: dunno how to “share” that.

  35. There really should be a place that immortalizes great comments of the likes of Brother Wharton. Somewhere that the best of the best can call home. If I had any ambition I’d create such a place.

  36. Let there be no confusion from previous context of this thread. I loved that post (#34).
    @33: I think its a person–interaction thing. People are what make great places.

  37. Wow, where was I? How come I can’t remember this guy?

    In the meantime, I’m looking forward to more from this thuest, theric. I’m interested in the idea of Mormon artists and art and the lack thereof.

  38. meems, I prophecy on this day that your wish for more Theric will granted on the morn.

  39. Thumblr is awesome and deserving of cult worship. Welcome, Th.

  40. I just come for the flame wars. Oh, Usenet, where hast thou gone? /grieving

  41. .

    Thanks, everybody. But see what I mean about BCC? I KNEW this was posting and I STILL got here after 40 posts!

    I want to give a quick amen to the downside of Like buttons. Although I must mea culpa a bit and admit I’ve been known to avoid saying something intelligent while still showing up at the party by playing the Like card myself.

    As for that frankly wonderful archived comment, I would like to invoke Poe’s Law, but somehow, somehow, I believe it.

  42. Th.,

    Thanks, everybody. But see what I mean about BCC? I KNEW this was posting and I STILL got here after 40 posts!

    Don’t blame other people for your unwillingness to depart with dial-up internet service.

  43. As for that frankly wonderful archived comment, I would like to invoke Poe’s Law, but somehow, somehow, I believe it.

    Oh, it’s real. And it’s spectacular.

    (Seriously, that was only ONE of his comments in the thread. One of many.)

  44. .

    So what you’re telling me is EVERYTHING I’VE HEARD ABOUT MORMONS IS TRUE!!!!!

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