My friend Lama’s latest blog post, titled “The Death of the Retweet Button”, revealed a disturbing and frustrating phenomenon occurring in the Twittersphere: people taking credit for other people’s discoveries.
They would rather go through the tedious process of copying the entire tweet and placing it in their tweet box, then deleting all unnecessary crap that comes on there. Then, they write the magical “RT” right before it. That way, if anyone else liked the tweet, their name remains as tribute to their efforts of finding that valuable piece of info and sharing it with the rest of the world.
While I share Lama’s sentiment and strongly believe that credit should be given where it’s due, I find it amusing that our society has evolved to a point where finding the cool stuff is almost as important as creating it in the first place. Not sure why we’re wired to do this. I remember feeling very frustrated as a teenager because everyone believed my then-boyfriend discovered this really cool Pearl Jam song (clip posted below) that wasn’t on their main albums when, in fact, I (me, moi) was the one who found it (through another friend who found it through another friend) and introduced it to our group’s musical landscape.
Yes, the fact that I’m still stewing over this is beyond pathetic.
But it goes to show that people feel a sense of ownership over the things they find first.
I also remember my younger brother battling me ferociously – when we were kids and sometimes today – to be the first to tell our parents that a famous singer or actor passed away. Not sure why he takes so much pleasure out of delivering this type of news – let’s just call that his thing. (My husband might get mad at me if I don’t mention that HE discovered Tom Segura – dude in the link – first and introduced me to him.)
Could this visceral desire to be the first to find something be the source of hipster culture? Think about it.
Hipsters spend their time trying to out-obscure one another. Why? Because they’re so unique? Or because they’ve mastered the art of finders, keepers by running breathlessly down the least beaten path?