Gettin' learned

2.4.05

finding our voice

“Our culture’s pulse is pounding on the Web.” Or so says David Weinberger, author of chapter 2 of The Cluetrain Manifiesto. And I must say, I would have to agree.

One of the first points that the Weinberger makes is that though our nation had become crazed and obsessed with the Web, we actually have no idea what it is for. There had been innumerable amounts of speculation as to its purpose but here is no solid form, Webster’s dictionary definition for it. At least not yet. But here, in chapter 2 Weinberger suggests that Web is for building a new world.

In order to successfully find this stage of rebuilding, rejuvenation and revolution there are certain facts that we must realize. The first fact that Weinberger suggests we take a look at is our desire for the Web and why it exists so strongly. He claims that we long for the Web because “something is missing in our lives” and “what is missing is the sound of the human voice.” We desire the Web because we desire human interaction and conversation. We desire the ability to be ourselves, our real selves that society has taught us to suppress in order to support the “greater good” of all mankind. When the Web first began it’s journey into the lives and homes of Americans my primary excitement with this new technology was the idea of chat rooms and message boards, the idea that I could successfully communicate with people who were halfway around the globe and worlds away from me, the idea that I could be anyone I wanted to be. Most stimulating was the idea that I could be myself, the self that I allowed to come out when no one was watching. But not I could allow it to surface in the face of countless strangers because of this newfangled Web. I no longer had to fit the mold that society had fashioned me to fill.

If “nothing is more intimately a part of who we are than our voice” than why is it that we are so quickly willing to give it up? And why then, if we are so willing to give it up are so angry for losing it? It is because the business world has found a way to obliterate all traces of the human voice without actually commanding that it be demolished. In order to subscribe to the professional standards that most corporations demand employees must the right to their own voice. So, if there are a set of rules that you must follow in order to be successful and your voice does not fit into these rules, then there is no other choice than to sacrifice voice for accomplishment. Professionalism creates one unified front and kills inidividuality, though some would tend to disagree.

Once we have mastered the ability to express ourselves without fail and remain successful in business, then we can begin laying the groundwork for a world in which the human voice becomes a driving voice in business.

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