8.29.2009

Time to think again is it worth it?

I'm thinking again about society, change, ideas that influence us, controls, relationships, conversations, politics, and how we want to be.

A little bit lower I found this article on Standpoint while looking for something else entirely. Below is some interesting commentary from that article on how things are changing at a societal level -I think. I'm not saying my commentary is interesting. But combined with the article I'm quoting below it might be. So first my thoughts; then the article.

Certain companies in dominant industries where billions and billions are made every year, who control Media Entertainment, are losing money (surprise surprise). Those groups or companies are trying to exploit for their own gain us (you and me and the "others"). We work at exercising in our lives conscious choice. But by exploiting the perversions of obscure groups of people (in the example I use below and am taking about here: mostly men who are pursuing every porn peccadillo they can find), they are changing the nature of our relationships to each other.

I'd like to believe we are immune and the're just TV shows but I recently found this one on youtube.com:
http://www.youtube.com/show/mommyxxx
It's a reality show about a porn star and her kids from what I can tell. Haven't watched it. (hey, keep the jokes clean.) But, what if that is your frame of reference? What if you grow-up in hyper state of (x)? Every year there is an Advertising Conference held in Orlando about marketing to kids. I'm talking 2-7 year olds. Little little kids. Companies know that if you can get "product familiarity" at a young age, you have them for life. I never knew why we used Crest growing up. We just did. (I don't now btw).

The reason certain industries are wholehearthedly pursuing these groups is their slavish devotion to one aspect of their lives; in this case it's sex but more accurately, pornography. Themes of control and exploitation come to mind. But, my exploitation is very different from yours, if you're a woman.

My thoughts on this area come from many sources online and off, various conversations we've had about technology and choice, and from books some of you have recommended:
Can't Buy My Love
Pornified
Full-Frontal Feminism
What does it mean to be a man?
Culture of Fear
Management of the Absurd

I especially appreciate you recommending books. All the time. Feel free. Now, those quotes from that article.

http://www.standpointmag.co.uk/node/2076/full
"The free availability of hard-core pornography on the internet is changing relationships between men and women in ways we have barely begun to talk about, but it is also changing television. What should executives do with the knowledge that sections of their ever-fragmenting audience are watching images they could not have found in the greasiest Soho basements 20 years ago? Once they would have ignored them, but now that television's power is waning, it must run after every viewer it can find. It cannot give them porn — not yet, anyway — but with Mock the Week it can reassure the onanistic that they're good lads, really, just having a harmless laugh."

"The audience cheers. Boyle knows that the BBC's managers will not complain about a male guest telling a woman that he will be masturbating next time she is on television. The Newsnight presenter Emily Maitlis established her superiors' indifference when she confronted the BBC's director-general with a Boyle line last year. O' Briain had asked the panel to come up with "things the Queen would never say during her Christmas speech," and Boyle replied, "I'm now so old my pussy is haunted."


So, next time you're in town or next time we have you over or the next time we get to talk at length, I'd love to have a conversation about what you might not be able to do in your life time. Or any other topic that requires us to slow down and think and respond and give and exchange ideas.

Personally, I think that is the only thing that can save us. If we need saving that is. Conscious conversation. And sharing.

~lee~

2 comments:

Bitter Clevelander said...

Outstanding post. My old-school and very judgmental two cents' worth: we ("society") are to blame. Under the utterly misguided ideal that we're protecting free speech, we've tolerated and, in some cases, enthusiastically embraced the amoebas of mass media. Big Brother After Dark, Mommyxxx, Jerry Springer, Howard Stern... they bring absolutely nothing to the table except for sleazy, trashy, in-your-face, shock-jock, push-the-envelope stupidity. Sacha Barron Cohen (sp?) shocks us with his antics, but actually performs an admittedly extreme type of public service by exposing people's prejudices and repulsive behaviour -- witness his scathing indictment of some religious factions completely refusing to tolerate homosexuality, or his constant exposure of way-too-prevalent racism and anti-semitism. Parasites like Rush Limbaugh and Bill Maher, on the other hand, spew anti-liberal and anti-conservative venom, respectively, without actually addressing a single pressing issue or providing anything remotely resembling a forum of intelligent discussion. Those programs and hosts shouldn't be banned from the airwaves, because that would be even more despicable than their very presence. My ideal resolution to this would be that people would smarten up and stop tuning in to that crap, but as long as there's an audience for it (and all indications point to there being a HUGE audience for it), it'll be here to stay. God help us all.

Eric said...

This is very thought provoking!

This coincides with something I have lamented about television and movies for years now, although I had never really put much thought into the root cause: that sex is rampant in movies and TV, and that's a reason I don't watch it much anymore.

I'm a lover of older movies and shows, back when you could have an entire film with no sex, but it was good enough to stand on its own. Don't get me wrong, I'm a fan of sex, but with the way it is used in modern film, it is more of a crutch in much the same way that CGI is a crutch for action films.

I'm not under the delusion that sex wasn't present in older movies and TV shows, but it wasn't as blatant, and it was more wisely used.

But I suppose these days, it takes more to shock an audience, and having to compete with the anything goes nature of the internet doesn't help either.