Re: virus: Definition of meme (from alt.memetics)

Wade T.Smith (
Mon, 30 Dec 96 17:02:25 -0500

>After careful consideration, I'm still unconvinced that would be a
>good idea. First of all, I see no inherent advantages to the new
>naming scheme. Don't get me wrong, I think it is all-important to
>distinguish between memes-in-the-mind, and that which is communicated
>and stored, hence the modifiers "active" and "dormant" and "in transit",
>etc. Secondly I think "spoor" is very confusing. As far as I know,
>an animal as never been recreated from its tracks or trail. Finally,
>and most importantly, changing the definition now would make everything
>that has been written about memetics up to this point incoherent. Not
>unlike changing the definition of "gene" so that genes cannot be said
>to be transmitted from generation to generation.
>So, on the off chance that my opinion carries any weight in this forum,
>I suggest we keep the "old" definition of meme, at least until we have
>a good reason for changing it. Anyone agree?
>David McFadzean

Would it really be such a kick in the memetic pants?

Then, hell, bend over.... ;-)

I am totally convinced that memes can only exist within an individual
brain, and that the methods of their gestation or transmission are not
memes but artifacts of culture.

Now there's a can of worms....

As to spoor (not my favorite word, ever, for anything...) not being
capable of recreating the animal, well of course not, but try to tell an
archeologist they're not capable of recreating at least a good model of
an animal.... You will definitely get an argument.

It may indeed be important not to subdivide memes into 'location' by
qualifying adjective. It is always better to maintain discrete words for
discrete things....

Wade T. Smith | 'If it ain't broke, | no-one's used it yet.'
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