Transparent Terry

I am employed by Audience Research & Development, and my writing is considered a work-for-hire. That means AR&D "owns" the blog, but I maintain it. However, the ideas and opinions expressed herein are mine alone and are not necessarily those of AR&D. The company has given me the freedom to keep expressing myself, and I accept the responsibility that comes with such liberty.

I blog for two reasons. One, it is the greatest method ever created to challenge my own assumptions, something that I believe is necessary for anyone who wishes a seat at the discussion table. It's one thing to have opinions, but until those are shared in an environment of unrestricted feedback, all they do is echo in my own mind. Blogging permits me to not only see those ideas and memes expressed in writing, but it also asks readers to comment if they disagree. For someone who is attempting to sell new ideas, this is profoundly important. Secondly, I blog because it's good for business. The viral nature of the Internet has placed my thinking in front of people I couldn't possibly have reached otherwise. I believe in the law of attraction, which is the essence of Internet marketing. As such, I don't need to employ conventional marketing methods to reach potential customers. I believe they will come to me, if my ideas are compelling. That seems naive to many, but it's actually terribly smart.

Among other things, I believe...

  The all of life is governed by Life and that we are spiritual beings on a human journey, not the other way around. For more on my spiritual beliefs, please read my old essay, "How I Know God Loves Me."

  That the political process in the U.S. has been the servant of special interests since the early 20th century, when Walter Lippmann and his Creel Commission cronies brought into being the ideas of public relations and "professional" journalism.

  That Lippmann's manufacture of consent is at the root of much of what's wrong with our culture in the 21st century, including the intellectual dishonesty known as political correctness.

  That citizen media, in the form of bloggers and blogging, offers hope and an alternative to the false journalism hegemony that has destroyed the public trust.

  That we are in the midst of a cultural change of eonian proportions wherein people are increasingly masters of their own ship, and that the disruptive innovations threatening the status quo are driven by this demand. I call this change Postmodernism, while understanding that the term has different meanings to different people. My interpretation is simple and practical. The modern era, with its emphasis on logic and reason, is giving way to a new era that I call "The Age of Participation."

Premodernism: "I believe, therefore I understand.
First Gutenberg moment (the printing press)
Modernism: "I think and reason, therefore I understand.
Second Gutenberg moment (Internet)
Postmodernism: "I participate, therefore I understand.

  That we are in the midst of the Second Gutenberg moment, described by Jay Rosen as "The Great Horizontal" and by J.D. Lasica as "The Personal Media Revolution."

  That the biggest disruption brought about by The Great Horizontal is that the people formerly known as the advertisers are now, in practice, media companies.

  That the Internet doesn't hurt media by taking away their readers or viewers; it hurts media by taking away their money.

  That mass marketing is dead or dying, and that attempts to resuscitate or rescue it are self-defeating.

  That transparency is the new paradigm for marketing conversations.

  That intellectualism without an open mind is foolishness gone to seed.

  That contempt prior to investigation is a bar to all progress.

  That institutional education serves first the institution and, in so doing, discourages imagination.

  That life's true prophets are found in the artistic community and that creative works, as such, belong to the public.

  That support of the arts is the duty of every citizen in a democracy.

  That using the Internet, with its associative links and references, forces one unknowingly into an exercise in deconstruction and away from absolutism, and that this will ultimately alter the political landscape of our culture.

  That life is not a struggle to become what you wish but an adventure to discover who you are.

  That the only thing worse than a person without an opinion is one who is afraid to express the opinion he or she has.

  That while humankind is capable of great good, most people default to a self-centered core.

  That the process of self-governance begins inside each individual, and that, without this, a self-governing community is impossible, and totalitarianism is inevitable.

  That John Wycliffe was right when he said, upon completion of the first common English language Bible, "This book shall make possible government of the people, by the people and for the people."

  That the paradox of prosperity is this: Discontent increases with opportunities for acting on it.

  That not to decide is to decide.

  That if you want to catch trout, you've got to use trout bait.

  That expense, and even great expense, may be an essential part of true economy.

  That, as Murrow wrote, we can deny our heritage and our history, but we cannot escape responsibility for the result.