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infective memes 
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Genuinely Genius

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Post infective memes
Any speculations on what makes some memes "more infective than others"? What makes a meme good at getting copied from one brain to another? What "inherent properties" would be "reasonable enough" to explain their success at replicating? Dawkins touches on this (p. 304+) but doesn't really go into detail. I always thought that the more links to existing memes a new meme has, the more infective it is.




Wed Jul 09, 2003 2:17 pm
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Post Re: infective memes
One of strongest memes is religion, obviously harmful. There's an article by Pual Kurtz discussing about the science of religion : www.humanismtoday.org/vol13/kurtz.html




Wed Jul 09, 2003 8:09 pm


Post Re: infective memes
Simplicity of the meme has to be an important factor for meme's success. For example, meme "God did it" is much more likely to spread than "Read some science books and you might get an idea of how things came to be what they are". More people are likely to get infected by one of the Britney Spears songs meme than by Mozart's music.

I do agree with you that memes that depend or that are based on other successful memes are more infectious.

If you interested in reading more about memes I recommend "Meme Machine" by Susan Blackmore (www.amazon.com/exec/obido...n=507846).

Edited by: Kostya at: 7/11/03 2:25 pm



Fri Jul 11, 2003 1:18 pm
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Post Re: infective memes
The most effective cluster of memes are the ones that are most truely in tune with genetic human nature, and, of course, the trojan horse for "getting in" are those memes that we are most familiar with at this moment in time.

So the "Meme War" is for the rapidly evolving cluster of memes that are in best harmony with the present state of human nature. There is something about Christianity, Islam, and Hinduism that has keyed in to those elements; that have caused them to be so effective; that elicit strong emotions (human nature confuses emotions for evidence of truth.)

The only evidence of truth that these superclusters of memes (religion, tradition, social behavior) will reveal is the architecture of the human psyche, and their success reveals little or says nothing about the laws of nature or the nature of the Cosmos.

But they are powerful enough to destroy and displace other modes of thinking. Civilization is in peril due to these memeplexes, especially the one that believe eternal economic "growth" is a good thing (as if cancer is good) and that to not grow, is to die. I would go with "to not change invites memeplexes to break down the immune system of civilization."

Sincerely,

Meme Wars
Monty Vonn
montyquest@aol.com




Sat Jul 12, 2003 4:30 am
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Post Re: infective memes
Interesting points from you all. I too am concerned about the power of destructive memes and how they can replace rational thinking. On the lighter side, some infective memes are just annoying. Like Dawkins' example with the tango, there is a song that sticks with me. I absolutely abhore the song and the band. U2's With or Without You infects my brain even if I just hear a snippet of it! I'm sure I'll get some flak from U2 fans for this! Fans, just rest assured that I'll be sick with the virus for just thinking about it!

Edited by: tarav at: 7/16/03 3:21 pm



Wed Jul 16, 2003 2:19 pm
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Post Re: infective memes
I wonder if riots would be a rapid spread of a meme. Mobs behave irrationally and get out of control quickly after one fruitloop spreads the idea that violence or destructive behavior are an effective communication technique. I'm sure if you videotaped the evolution of a riot it would start with particular individuals and then spread out like a wildfire as the meme jumped from one idiot to the next.

Chris

"When once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward,for there you have been, and there you will always want to be."



Thu Jul 17, 2003 11:37 pm
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