Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Creators and critics

I've seen the beginnings of a kind of creative movement online, or just a creative attitude. I'm sure it's older than what I've seen, but the basis is this: your right to criticise or comment on anything is proportional to the amount you create yourself. This means that practically every YouTube comment is rendered invalid, because the commenter is (usually) not a creator. It also matters how high is the quality of what you create and how many people like it. But in essence, unless you make things, you don't get to criticise the things other people make. And, conversely, I don't have to listen to your criticism unless you make things too. Your value as a critic is directly related to your value as a creator.

Now, you will know whether you like something, and you will probably tell other people what you like and don't like. That's fine, as long as there's more in the positive column than the negative one. But one thing you can't do with your negative opinion is take it to the creator and demand they stop making things. The New Makers Reputation Economy (TM) is built on people continuing to make things. If you ever advocate that it stops, you won't be heard.

So, two take-home points. Number one: go out there and make things. Don't just sit and think about making them, go and actually do it. Even though the first things you make are going to suck, make them anyway. Number two: once you've started making things, then you can start commenting on the things other people have made.

Mokalus of Borg

PS - I need to learn some more skills to make physical things.
PPS - And not because I want to criticise anyone.

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