On Internet As A Myth, Pt II

As promised, I’ll tell you about the aspects the Internet derived from the myth. It should be reminded that the Web – along with the myth, mysteries, theater and media – exploits the feature of the psyche lies in the fact that the human mind does not distinguish between reality and human perception of it. This similarity allows – while creating or analyzing current services and subjects – to rely on a methodology developed during the course of the history of mankind.

A great many of sophists, from ancient times to the present day, have dedicated their lives to describing the analysis of cultural phenomena. This content’s available. I’ll briefly outline the common traits for these phenomena and determine a couple of conclusions that I guess could be useful to the creators of Internet services. I’d like to single out three elements that can be found both on the Internet and at its predecessors.

1. The Internet is not a reality. User understands that the principles and guidelines he’d formed in real life do not apply to this field. What he sees and what he does, can not fall within the scope of the previously formed experiences. And even directly contradicts them sometimes. His behavior is limited not so much by morals as by internal processes and regulations of the Internet. Government’s attempts to establish its laws on this “territory” are designed to change that, but they are unlikely to succeed.
Conclusion: the internet service can create its rules of interaction with the user. You can ask for the name of his mother, the number of his sex encounters and who knows what else. But do not expect that the user will be as polite, tolerant and pleasant as he is offline.

2. The acting characters on the Internet are all archetypal. Services or specific public figures on the Internet are subject to the canonical rules and can not disrupt their image without consequences. Their characteristics are exaggerated, they may seem contradictory, but nevertheless they follow their own logic. They are more like pieces of pantheons and mythologies than like people on the other side of the screen. For example, a trickster should not rouse a sense of guilt. In the theater this may end with rotten tomatoes, on the internet – with the mass departure of viewers.
Conclusion: the service or a public person on the Internet must clearly act out their roles and for them moving away from it means risking too much to lose: the number of users.

3. The scenario to be played out in front of the observer must be relevant to him for the process of “inclusion” to happen. Every time period is characterized by their own narratives in the drama. There are, of course, topics that always stay relevant – the death, the loneliness, etc.
Conclusion: the popularity of the service depends strongly on how well the narrative that is acted out at the moment resonates with the users’ experiences. For the modern English-speaking environment I’d like to pinpoint the following current scenarios: narcissism, twisted form of discharging the aggression through ecology, the fight for social justice.

Of course, the listed criteria do not exhaust the similarities of such phenomena as the Internet and facets of life, which were formed in the course of human history and are associated with the unreal. For me they are the major ones and I’ll gladly discuss the subject :).