They’re listening. They’ve been listening for months. Their response? Continuing to send their volunteers out online to cop the heat from the Burner community.
Now it’s the turn of Caveat Magister.
reblogged from blog.burningman.com:
There’s only one explanation: it’s a conspiracy, and it goes all the way to the top! Yes! The only way people with money could have possibly used that money to try and game the system is if Burning Man was directly involved! In on it! We all know it, but you don’t the half of it!
Here are the 5 biggest, most shocking, examples, of plug-and-play malfeasance – and the Burning Man organization’s complicity in it!
- A group of prominent venture capitalists paid Larry Harvey $6 million to write them an extra-fun 11th principle that no-one else has.
What is it? I don’t know! You don’t know! But it’s got to be amazing, and we’re not living by it! Only they are!
- The compound prepared for the Walton family, which owns Wall-Mart, actually paid its greeters
They brought out a bunch of senior citizens to tell everyone on the playa to have-a-nice-day! They even hugged people! And then were paid minimum wage!
- Haliburton’s massive camp art project was really a derrick testing for oil under Black Rock City.
Sure it shot out flames, had a DJ, and Friday night’s Gushing Oil Party was awesome, but that’s not the point!
- Billionaire Amazon.com owner Jeff Bezos’ theme camp never even came out in physical form, and instead was available only on Kindle.
Anyone who went is now under the terms and conditions of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act! On the plus side, there was no MOOP.
- Warren Buffett slipped Burning Man CEO Marian Goodell $10 million to move Burning Man to Omaha, and fix it so nobody noticed.
That giant sculpture with the funky lights that everybody loved? That was really the Nebraska statehouse. We were so used!
And there’s MORE: […]
We can’t let them get away with this! Obviously we need to fix global income equality! Or bitch about how Burning Man’s run! Whichever is easier for us to do on the internet!
That’s how seriously they take the community’s concerns, Burners. They’re laughing at us. It’s all A Big Farce. The Simpsons guarantees them a steady stream of new tourists, so why should they be bothered with what a few thousand disgruntled Burners think?
The issue isn’t rich people at Burning Man. Rich people have always been going, and most of them are happy to be Burners like everyone else. They gift sound stages, or rides on their art cars, or food for hundreds or thousands, or a free bar, or an interactive art piece. They pick up after themselves, and pick up the MOOP of others. They take their bikes and their trash out with them when they leave.
The issue the community is most concerned about is the rise of Burner bingo-playing Commodification Camps, how they got so many tickets, and how they blatantly disregard the Tin Principles. We’re concerned about lack of transparency in the dealings of the new “non-profit” that now owns the event. We’re concerned about the for-profit dealings of some members of BMOrg’s Board of Directors who are commercializing our culture, trying to make money for themselves off the volunteer labor and freely given gifts of tens of thousands of Burners.
If BMOrg really were listening to Burners, they’d know that. The comments on their blog are pretty frikking clear.
Except for a few nut cases trying to foment a revolution with Burning Man as the front lines of their “class war”, most Burners don’t care how much money the person next to them has. It’s about what you bring to the party. We’re all the same in a dust storm and in the porta-potties. Camping in an RV doesn’t stop the call of Nature happening when you’re far away from your camp; and having success in your career doesn’t somehow make you a “bad Burner”. Radical Inclusion never meant “poor hippies only”.
BMOrg would do well to respect the community’s concerns, instead of continuing with the party line of the last few months: misdirection, silence, and laughing it all off.
[Update 11/81/14 9:22am]
Caveat Magister has tried to explain himself with another post: Why Am I Making Fun of Burners. In it, he claims:
– he is speaking for himself, not the org
– he is against Commodification Camps
– the issue is gentrification, not Commodification Camps
Nice try, but it flies in the face of logic. BMOrg are the ones placing the Commodification Camps, giving them early access passes, scalping tickets to them all year while shutting STEP down early, and appointing people behind them to their Board of Directors.
The issue is Commodification Camps, not rich people or “the spectrum of turkeys”.
Perhaps soon, we will see a post at burningman.com “Why BMOrg Are Not Taking Burners Seriously”. Because, gentrification is too big of a problem for them to fix in their temporary city? I call bullshit.
In the comments to Caveat’s initial post, Burner Dani said:
Maybe the plan all along was to dynamite the burn. Let some board member fuck everyone over. Lose all the volunteers. Piss off artists and the people that let’s face it, MAKE THE EVENT. And then slink off with millions in cash and not have to do again.
The man this year burned a long time. Long enough to say forever?
They still haven’t updated their web site to add the dates for 2015…just sayin’…
[Update 11/19/14 00:07 am]
I’ve stopped trying to respond to comments both because I can’t keep up and because I don’t really think there’s a demand for “more Caveat.”
But I want to address what you’ve just brought up and say: I can’t speak for Answergirl or Will, but this one is all on me. No one set me up to be a “sacrificial lamb.” I’m the guy who said to himself “Hey, how about I write a funny list?” and then by God went all the way with it. I am wholly, and solely, responsible for whatever jackassery I write.
And while it is damn uncomfortable to be in the middle of an internet shitstorm, I don’t think I have any room to ask people to make it less personal. Because I led with a joke. I made fun of something that a lot of people are truly passionate about, and the fact that I hoped it would go over better isn’t an excuse. I didn’t start with a well-reasoned, gentle, epistle: I opened with a joke, I laughed at a topic they take seriously, and of course that makes it personal. I don’t have to agree with a word of it (or think I “deserve” it) … but I believe firmly that if you’re going to prank, you have to take responsibility when the prank goes wrong. I fucked this up, so, okay: people get to tell me I’m a terrible human being in a variety of ways. It sucks, but they mean it to suck, and I started it.
I really appreciate your consideration, though. Thank you.
And for what it’s worth: many commenters here are right. I didn’t “get it.” I thought the issue was about gentrification – and actually I think it still is. But (it seems to me) what the people screaming at me are screaming at me about is *accountability.* I might be right that the underlying issue is one of gentrification – that’s my opinion, I mean it, and I’m entitled to it. But when they say “you’re not hearing our complaint, you’re not getting what we’re talking about,” they were right. I missed their point.
Still no official word from BMOrg since their “coming soon” post more than a week ago.
Burner Metapony brought up an interesting parallel with a past situation – why comment directly, when you have a volunteer army of disposable pranksters at your disposal?