Redo: Its the Blogs Stupid? (re: Community)

Posted by Jason Van Anden | Fri Oct 6th 2006 7:53 a.m.

So much for spontaneity! Apologies for the lack of proofing on my
last post before jumping on the subway to work.

Those comments were not meant to suggest that the blogs alone are to
blame for a less lively Rhizome. It seems that a cloud of
disenfranchisement has gathered as well. I agree with Lee (I usually
do).

Jason Van Anden
www.smileproject.com

On 10/6/06, Jason Van Anden <jason@smileproject.com> wrote:
> I came to Rhizome late - in 2003. I was a little disappointed then
> with the reality vs promise that this represented. Still, I have met
> a lot of cool people that have helped my art career along.
>
> I expressed a concern then that the emergence of the blog could
> potentially kill a community like Rhizome unless people made a
> concerted effort to continue to participate in the board. Before
> individual blogs became easy and popular, people had no choice but to
> participate in a message board if they wanted to share their opinions
> with others. The format of the message board forced people to deal
> with a community if they wanted to be listened to - which ensured
> lively interaction and fresh content as an emergent behavior. Perhaps
> the motivation for Rhizome Raw is diminished now that on the internet
> nobody knows your dog has a blog. Or something.
>
> Jason Van Anden
> www.smileproject.com
>
> On Oct 6, 2006, at 6:28 AM, Lee Wells wrote:
>
> > It definitely isn't the same thing it use to be.
> > My biggest disappointment lately was that they didn't let the
> > community know
> > about the 10 year festival until it was already curated. I'm sure
> > many of
> > the members would have liked to be included in some part of it
> > outside of
> > the Keylines discussion on the choices that were made.
> > Isn't that what Rhizome is anyway????
> >
> > Where was the open call to the members?
> > Was it something we all missed.
> >
> > Did the New Museum of Contemporary Art make an executive decision?
> > Is the
> > fact that Rhizome's a membership org only a conduit for grants? I
> > know its
> > not easy to run a non profit but what used to be an open network
> > has to a
> > certain degree become a bit privileged and elitist.
> >
> > Perhaps Marisa can explain to everyone her curatorial decisions.
> > The main
> > mistake was that there wasn't even the illusion that the real
> > community on
> > Rhizome would be asked to be a part of something. For as much as
> > the staff
> > is accountable to the Board of Directors they should also be
> > accountable to
> > the members of the community as well.
> >
> > I'm sure there could have been some sort of collaborative project
> > created
> > that could have included everyone if they so desired.
> >
> > I've been hanging around the RAW servers since 1998 and have been
> > surprised
> > by some of the directions that the org has taken over the years.
> > On certain levels the site is better, like the New York Times of
> > New Media
> > and an amazing resource for calls for work and exhibition
> > opportunities. But
> > the great conversations and real community participation of the
> > past now
> > only happen once in a great while and the users have been turned into
> > passive viewers. As long as there are only a couple people questioning
> > nothing will change.
> >
> > Full community participation is needed to create a positive change
> > in any
> > society.
> >
> >
> > Cheers,
> > Lee
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > On 10/5/06 6:03 PM, "Steve OR Steven Read"
> > <steveread@mindspring.com> wrote:
> >
> >> Uh oh, it's turning into a rhizome bashing party!
> >>
> >> I have only been around here for about 2 years. I have watched the
> >> 'community'
> >> feeling dwindle. I can't bitch too much because I'm sort of a
> >> loner and not
> >> usually one to jump into communities in general. But what has
> >> caused this
> >> reduction besides the commission stuff, and is disappointing, is
> >> the end of
> >> the 'art base'. I don't know if the reason is because of manpower
> >> funding or
> >> because of regime change strategy decisions, but about a year ago
> >> they stopped
> >> accepting things into the art base. The rhizome front page used to
> >> be mostly
> >> MEMBER art projects that were newly added into the art base. It
> >> was member
> >> content. And it was exciting to see all the new member art coming
> >> in and to
> >> see it discussed here. That is gone. Decisions were made to change
> >> to a reblog
> >> system of mostly external NON-MEMBER content. I voiced my opinion
> >> about that
> >> decision when it was made. I was slapped down, and for one reason
> >> or another
> >> was asked to resign as a 'superuser' helper. (Apparently I wasn't p!
> >> osting often enough to be useful as a FREE volunteer resource)
> >> Now the site
> >> its mostly digested information from other blogs and sources. I
> >> don't need
> >> that, I have a free bloglines account already thank you.
> >>
> >> The art base claims to still be in operation. But how many pieces
> >> have been
> >> added to it this year? About 5. It used to be at least 10-20
> >> pieces per week.
> >> Now it's pretty much gone. And there has been little to no
> >> explanation. And I
> >> am quite sure the members were submitting hundreds and hundreds of
> >> pieces to
> >> the art base this year. They appear to have been completely ignored.
> >>
> >> Then they do an anniversary festival, all in NYC it seemed.
> >> Suffice to say I
> >> didn't feel at all any sense of 'community' involvement with this
> >> festival. I
> >> could have missed something with that, but it seemed to me to be
> >> conceived and
> >> implemented in a vacuum.
> >>
> >> I would like to renew my membership when the time comes, but the
> >> reasons are
> >> disappearing. I feel my money is not going to help any
> >> 'community', but
> >> instead to help a select few NYC insiders, which I am not 'lucky'
> >> enough to be
> >> one of. They don't seem to want our community, or they simply
> >> can't afford it
> >> anymore.
> >> +
> >> -> post: list@rhizome.org
> >> -> questions: info@rhizome.org
> >> -> subscribe/unsubscribe: http://rhizome.org/preferences/
> >> subscribe.rhiz
> >> -> give: http://rhizome.org/support
> >> +
> >> Subscribers to Rhizome are subject to the terms set out in the
> >> Membership Agreement available online at http://rhizome.org/info/
> >> 29.php
> >>
>
>
>
> +
> -> post: list@rhizome.org
> -> questions: info@rhizome.org
> -> subscribe/unsubscribe: http://rhizome.org/preferences/subscribe.rhiz
> -> give: http://rhizome.org/support
> +
> Subscribers to Rhizome are subject to the terms set out in the
> Membership Agreement available online at http://rhizome.org/info/29.php
>

--
Jason Van Anden
http://www.smileproject.com
Your Reply