WordPress.com is a DMCA Safe Harbor for Blog Publishers

There are moments when, as the publisher of the 13-blog strong — Boles Blogs Network here on WordPress.com — I find something on the web that instantly sickens my stomach with anger.  Yesterday was an example of that sort of “Immediate Internet Illness.”  I read an alarming article from Wired.com’s Threat Level concerning Righthaven — a “Copyright Troll” — and their purposeful, chilling, delight in making money by filing lawsuits against, what amounts to, fair use and freedom of speech by bloggers and online forums.

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Wired Covers a Chocolate Urban Jesus

We love the re-gifting ability of the Internet.  It was our delight and surprise to learn today Wired.com liked our Urban Semiotic article — What to Do With a Naked Chocolate Jesus — enough to link it from their article on Bioartists… way back on December 13, 2007 as you can see in the screenshot below.  The Urban Semiotic.com link from April 2, 2007, is the last words in the last sentence:

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Malicious Meme Propagating Machines

In a brilliant interview with Wired, SuperGenius Susan Blackmore reveals how we are no longer in control of our memes:

You can in the early stages of a new meme drag it back and stop it. If you know that only two or three other people know something you can stop them from spreading it. Or if a book has been written, you can burn the paper that it’s written on. But once a meme has been let loose in the population, you can’t take it back.

What culture is doing, what the memesphere is doing, is taking a human being and infecting it with masses of new information and exploiting its tendencies. We are being turned from ordinary old-fashioned meme machines into what I call “teme” machines — machines for copying technological information, spreading photos and printed words and digital files.

We can choose to turn our computer off if we want to (stop from absorbing and spreading some memes). But we as a species are not in control of the internet. We are not in control of the growth of new media. And we are getting less and less able to control what goes on out there.

What I believe is happening now is that true teme machines are arriving — that is, machines that copy and produce variations and then select. That’s what you need for an evolutionary process; that’s natural selection.

Up until very recently in the world of memes, humans did all the varying and selecting. We had machines that copied — photocopiers, printing presses — but only very recently do we have artificial machines that also produce the variations, for example (software that) mixes up ideas and produces an essay or neural networks that produce new music and do the selecting. There are machines that will choose which music you listen to. It’s all shifting that way because evolution by natural selection is inevitable. There’s a shift to the machines doing all of that.

We’re not there yet. But once we’re there, there’s going to be evolution of memes out there that is totally out of our control.

If what Blackmore argues is coming true — how fast will the “malicious meme” come into being to infect, and destroy, the mind and body?

How soon will the “malicious meme” be militarized for use as the ultimate Weapon of Mass Destruction?