OK, so, I’m watching Cosmos on Netflix. Neil deGrasse Tyson, the narrator, is pretty much, like, one step away from Morgan Freeman. That’s how awesome it is to watch this show (go watch the show).
Anyway – at the start of an episode about stars, the narrator says “every time you look at the stars you look into the past.” Because it takes light a whole bunch of time to get here from however far it comes from.
Then I realised how important a thought that is. I thought for a second and realized that you can use stars as a metaphor to think about the most visible people (the real MVPs aka the stars) our society produces – celebrities and other people in the public eye like politicians and business people. Just like stars are the most visible objects nature produces in the night sky.
So, when we look at these people (the stars), we are looking at the past. Because the past is what produced them. Thanks to cultural evolution, the stars are, effectively, clearly visible data on what history and evolution are producing as those most deserving of visibility – both naturally due to demand factors and systemically due to supply factors.
It’s really important to ask the question: Are we creating, listening to, or being told stories about the past (rhetoric eliciting eg. past fears or dreams) or about the future (rhetoric eliciting eg. current anxieties or hopes)?
Which direction do we think we’re going towards relative to the answer to the previous question? Think about, for example, the story Donald Trump is selling Americans right now – and the fact that a lot of people believe it and are moving towards making it a reality. The story always leads.
This is an interesting area of thought. Who gets the most attention from you – who are your stars? What’re their values? How well do you think they understand them(selves)? What’s their reflection of (or influence on) you?
Who’s in your media mix? Why?
Science is cool.
Ps. Everything isn’t driven by pure, untouched demand – in real life, supply has an opinional impact on demand in all transactions (it’s called sales and marketing). When you stop and think about that, you realize how important the media & entertainment industries are in both reflecting the nature of the masses and influencing them. They’re giving us data on what we are like as a society by nature – and by control. This is, pretty much, the ultimate argument for news transparency and ethically diverse (also ethnically diverse) and all-around balanced reporting.
Oh, transparency and ethics goes for entertainment media, as well.
© 2017 Jens J. Sørensen