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Credit Where Credit Is Not Due

weather: mostly cloudy
outside: 12°C
mood: miffed
I understand how important it is to people to give credit where credit is due for writing, even pointless little pieces of shit that anyone can come up with. I've learned my lesson.

But crediting anyone but the original creator of a Meme is just retarded. Who bloody cares? Why should anyone be offended that they weren't credited for passing it along? Are we that self-important that we feel the need to be credited for every unimportant flip and fart we make?

A meme is meant to be publicly available and passed around far and wide. There is no creativity, originality or much of ANYTHING involved in propagating a meme. To trace the exact lineage of who got it from whom is giving credit where it is not due.

If I see a book on my friend's shelf and decide to buy myself a copy, you cannot seriously be telling me that I have to credit that friend and everyone else who she got a recommendation from when I write a review.

Am I the only one who is just delighted enough to see someone doing the same meme after me? I'm delighted to be mentioned too, but I'm not upset if I'm not.



( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
(Deleted comment)
Oct. 18th, 2004 01:47 pm (UTC)
I give it my best Google to see if it came from somewhere in particular, but if it's clearly not written by the person I got it from and it looks like it's supposed to be passed around, I'm not going to try too hard.
(Deleted comment)
Oct. 18th, 2004 04:19 pm (UTC)
I do most of them that I see, but I only post them if there's something interesting or something I want to say about the result.
Oct. 18th, 2004 02:24 pm (UTC)
do people really get that upset about it?

(then again, LJ seems to be the land of people getting upset over things that they shouldn't....)
Oct. 18th, 2004 03:12 pm (UTC)
Yeah, and that be the same land as the land of the people getting upset at the people getting upset over things that they shouldn't, who shouldn't.

Oct. 18th, 2004 02:38 pm (UTC)
O_O I had no idea people got upset over stuff like that. I normally just point to where I got the meme just as a note to myself for where I got it from. Is it really necessary? I don't think so. Neither do I flip a gasket if people take memes from me and don't "credit" me. I mean, what's there to be upset about? I certainly didn't make the darn thing.
Oct. 18th, 2004 02:48 pm (UTC)
I usually do it if I was stuck by their post. Or I'm in a masochistic mood, and just feel like looking it all up.
Oct. 18th, 2004 03:09 pm (UTC)
Well, I agree with your rant, if that's any consolation.
Oct. 18th, 2004 09:06 pm (UTC)
Okay, so I have a totally different perspective on this. Forgive me if this sounds s bit disjointed. I've never articulated it before and I have to keep it short so I'll get back to studying for class...

I don't think it has anything to do with "giving credit" for the meme. Rather, it has more to do with a sort of gift exchange with regards to inspiration for keeping and building one's one community of readers.

I.e. - somebody might take part in a meme because it not only entertains them to do so but also because it may entertain their readers, or inspire someone else to take part in the same meme. It's the *inspiration* and the "this person was the first to pass this along" that people want the credit for, but it's not just an ego thing (although it can be).

That's because getting credit for passing along a bit of information/fun/amusement is extremely valuable in an environment like LJ, since it's one of the most effective ways to reach new readers/friends for your blog or journal.

Since readers for any one blog can be scarce and take time and effort to build, one can hope that if something you pass along - from whatever original source - is valuable enough to become material for another someone's blog that they might "gift" you with the possibility of a bit of exposure to other readers for having passed along something valuable. The "credit" with having "discovered" something valuable builds your credibility as an interesting read - and draws in more friends or readers. It shapes your blog/journal personality or identity and draws people to you.

This isn't how it's like in email. Hardly anybody ever credits a person or a listserv as the place they forwarded something fun from - there's no reason to since that listserv or individual person isn't seeking an audience. But for journal and blog writers it's different. If you're writing, you want that writing to be noticed and read. The custom of crediting other's is a way of supporting others in the quest to remain visible and read.

Oct. 20th, 2004 04:52 am (UTC)
I often credit people for memes but just for fun (the phenomenon of self-spreading snippets of information is so amusing, it's fun to emphasize its chain behaviour) and because I enjoy to write "stolen from" :P Can't imagine why somebody would get upset about these silly things. But then, some people take themselves too seriously...
( 9 comments — Leave a comment )


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