Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Eris' New Dress

A wonderfully Discordian media virus recently ran its course through the simultaneous resonance of our social networks, a meme so efficient and contentious that it became ubiquitous almost immediately, and can be invoked simply by saying “The Dress.” Like the mythic Apple of Discord, thrown by Eris’ to instigate a fight amongst the gods, the ambiguously hued picture sparked immediate conflict amongst its viewers, who vigorously argued about its contents. A media virus, as defined by Douglas Rushkoff, consists of a protective & sticky outer shell, and a hidden payload of memetic code. (A Trogan Horse for ideas.) The outer shell is the surface issue/face value of a meme, in this case, the question: “What color is this dress?” The adhesive shell becomes attached to a host medium and thence its memetic programming gets injected therein. This meme was particularly sticky because people could not understand how anyone could possibly disagree with, what was presumed to be, their objective observation. The memetic programming contained within the argument of “Black & Blue vs. White & Gold,” amongst all the science of perception, seems to be something akin to the zen koan: “Who is the great magician that makes the grass green?”
I think Robert Anton Wilson would have absolutely loved “The Dress,” and all the discussion about subjectivity and uncertainty that it created. Without really realizing it, the internet just got a crash course in Maybe Logic.

Originally posted on disinfo.com



Alias Bogus said...

"As an example, Eshu was walking down the road one day, wearing a hat that was red on one side and blue on the other. Sometime after he departed, the villagers who had seen him began arguing about whether the stranger's hat was blue or red. The villagers on one side of the road had only been capable of seeing the blue side, and the villagers on the other side had only been capable of seeing the red half. They nearly fought over the argument, until Eshu came back and cleared the mystery, teaching the villagers about how one's perspective can alter one's perception of reality, and can be easily fooled."
some Trickster stuff

Alias Bogus said...

Whoops, sorry, posted a self-referential link.
The Trickster quote came from here

Bobby Campbell said...

So cool to see such a serendipitous display of trickery play out in real time!


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