Shadow Banning: It’s Not Just Conservatives

Shadow Banning is in the news this week, with Silicon Valley tech giants Google (YouTube), Facebook, LinkedIn, and Apple all kicking Alex Jones off their platforms in a simultaneous multi-platform purge. Predictably, the Streisand Effect kicked in, sending Alex Jones’s InfoWars app trending to #3 on the download list at the App Store.

Twitter kept Jones on and CEO (and Burner?) Jack Dorsey went on Fox News’ Hannity talkshow, where he claimed they do not shadow ban accounts or target conservatives. If they don’t shadow ban accounts, then why is there this site shadowban.eu where you can type in your Twitter handle to test if you are shadow banned?

Google are good guys, aren’t they? Don’t be evil? They would never abuse their monopoly power to arbitrarily punish sites. They’re Burners, and used the Burning Man logo to promote their company to the tech industry. So they must love freedom, freedom of speech, and radical self expression, right? The goal of their search engine is to put you in touch with the best information…isn’t it?

Well maybe their vast powers of Artificial Intelligence can give me an explanation for what’s going on.

Burners.Me is by far the largest blog about Burning Man on the Internet, with almost 2000 stories written by 30 different people over 6.5 years. We have 270,000+ followers on Facebook, 15,000+ on Twitter, and tens of thousands more who subscribe to every post on email. We’ve been quoted by the New York Times, Bloomberg, The Guardian, VICE, and many other mainstream media outlets. There are hundreds, perhaps thousands of other sites that link in to our articles.

We have been the #1 blog and #1 post on WordPress multiple times; and frequently in Top 100. This is not just about Burning Man, this is out of all blogs in the world. WordPress powers 27% of the Internet, 75 million blogs

So you would think that a search for “Burning Man blog” would bring this site up pretty quickly, yeah? For most of Burners.Me’s life, we were on page 1 of the search results for this. Now, it’s on the bottom of page 5, behind many smaller and abandoned blogs and some totally unrelated content.

 

What about a search for “Burning Man“? We have thousands and thousands of pages about every aspect of the event.

Bottom of page 11.

Hmmm. What about “burning man drugs” – we have scores of harm reduction posts by Terry Gotham. We have the actual data about drugs found at Burning Man and drug-related arrests from the Pershing County Sheriff’s office, as far as I know the only location on the Internet with that.

Funnily enough, if you search “Terry Gotham” Burners.Me is on page 1.

Use a proper search engine, duckduckgo.com, we come up 3rd for “Burning Man blog”. As it should be. Accurate search results, not Deep Mind controlled propaganda narratives.

This blog’s a hobby for me. My art project. I started it to share my opinion, not to get an audience. So the consequences of this particular search result manipulation are pretty minor. But think about what it means in context: someone from the Burning Man Project went to someone from Google – possibly direct to the Billionaire Burner founders – and said “do us a favor, mute this voice”? And they did it? No trial, no opportunity to mount a defense, no notification that anything at all had even happened. Not even the courtesy of a label like the “Fake News” people get. All you can see (if you pay attention to such things) is your web traffic go way down, for no apparent reason.

How many times a day does this happen to people that “They” don’t like, and how many messages and voices are getting invisibly tuned out of The Matrix like this? Do they do the same thing to me personally, to my friends, to my companies?

Is it right that corporations should have that kind of power? Is it right that a festival should? One that purports to be all about making the world a better place?

Perhaps there is a genuine explanation for why smaller blogs with less content rank higher. I’m all ears, Google.

What she said:

“Davos Is Burning Man With Clothes” – Sergey Brin

davos-2

Google Co-Founder and Billionaire Burner Sergey Brin, rumored to be one of the Anonymous donors backing Burning Man’s year round philosophy center/nude bathing retreat Flysalen, has chosen the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland to show off his “cool kid” Burning Man credentials.


re-blogged from The Hollywood Reporter (because Switzerland is so close to Los Angeles)

Google Co-Founder: Davos World Economic Forum Is Like Burning Man “Except We’re All Wearing Clothes”

Sergey Brin, the president of Google parent company Alphabet, on Thursday lauded the technology company and Silicon Valley’s culture of pursuing new ideas and businesses, even if they don’t succeed, arguing that it allows for innovation and creativity.

Speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland in a session that was live-streamed, he said his first visit to the event in eight years reminded him a bit of Burning Man in Nevada.

“Not having been to Davos in eight years, I’m even confused in a good way, because there are all these business executives and CEOs and everybody wondering how are people going to find purpose and what about all these refugees, what about income inequality,” he said before drawing laughs by adding. “I kind of feel like I’m at Burning Man — almost, except we’re all wearing clothes.”

On a more serious note, Brin told the Davos crowd on Thursday that outside of the Forum, “oftentimes, there is a very antagonistic [relationship] between government and business,” which he said is “very unhealthy.” He called on all to focus on tackling issues “in a real collaborative way.”

He was also questioned about the culture at Alphabet/Google and Silicon Valley in general. “We are just lucky to have the environment that tolerates making lots of risky bets and tolerating the failures that inevitably result,” he said about the company.

In that context, he also shared that he thought about the idea for Google as part of his graduate student project at Stanford University and asked his advisor whether he should become an entrepreneur or finish his PhD, the advisor said: “Why not!? Go for it, and then if it doesn’t work out, you come back, you finish your PhD, which I am still planning on doing.”

Brin said “that mentality permeates Silicon Valley, and I think that’s one of the strengths that it’s not viewed so negatively to try something even if it doesn’t work out.”

Asked about Alphabet/Google’s key values, he said: “For whatever weird reason, maybe it’s because we are San Francisco hippies, Google has always had a little bit of that social responsibility view.” And he added: “It can’t be the case that companies such as ours are just purely profit motivated. … You can’t just think narrowly, this is your business, you are just going to maximize earnings, it doesn’t matter what else is going on around you.”

Image: Noah Zerkin, Twitter

Image: Noah Zerkin, Twitter

Asked if he had any idea where Google would go when he started it, Brin said: “I could not possibly have imagined.” 

What’s his advice for young people? Brin said “you should have fun” instead of thinking about an IPO from the start or trying to be number one in their field on a global basis, explaining: “I certainly had no dreams of economic success.” He concluded: “I would encourage young folks to take chances and pursue their dreams and try to silence out the voices that say well, actually there are a thousand startups trying to solve self-riding bicycles or whatever they happen to be doing.”

[Source: Hollywood Reporter]


We know most Burners would rather talk about refugees and income equality than LSD and Molly. Right? We’re not just partying, we’re actually making the world a better place…by partying.

I guarantee you there are after parties at Davos where you can find naked people. Perhaps Brin isn’t “in”?

google-machine-gunWhen Sergey described the “very antagonistic relationship between Government and Business”, was that based on his company having 427 meetings at the Obama White House, a “hand in glove” arrangement with the State Department, and its Billionaire Burner CEO being chairman of the Pentagon’s technology board and the top outside advisor for Hillary Clinton’s Presidential run? If that is antagonistic, I’d hate to see what “in the pocket” looks like. The close collaboration between corporations and government Sergey dreams of is also known as  “fascism”.

the-groundwork-logo

Source: Quartz


Burning Man for Billionaire Bilderbergers

What other rave lets you see billionaire dicks swinging in the wind? If you want to see your Davos colleagues rock out with their shirt-cock out, invite them to Burning Man. Maybe they can connect with venture capitalists and hot new startups – even BMorg themselves have an incubator now, Black Rock Labs. Sergey will be there, sans vêtements, he’s the 13th richest guy in the world. Allegedly. If they’re lucky (or even unlucky, as long as they’re rich) then knowing the right insiders might swing them a VIP invite to the offsite. There’s a geyser (Ser-gey-ser?), where you can get naked in the hot springs. It’s called Radical Self Expression, and it’s life-changing. Transformative. You may be the CEO of a Fortune 100 company, but if you’ve never done Special K with supermodels at sunrise at Robot Heart then you’re living a false reality, a lie that you need to cast off so you can make the world a better place. Tune In to Larry Harvey and the Ten Principles, Turn On to liquid acid, and Drop Out of all those clothes that stop you from expressing who you really want to be. Come to the Burn, Man, and leave Transformed.

transformers-robots-in-disguise-season-1_1431949109

How long until Google hosts an executive retreat at Flysalen? It’s probably already happened. Wonder if any goats were sacrificed.

 

Sergey’s speech this week is not the first time Burning Man has been linked to Davos, which has been called Burning Man for Billionaire Bilderbergers.

In 2014 BMorg told us about all the Burners at the World Economic Forum in Davos is Burning. Strangely, they didn’t think it was relevant to mention that Burning Man’s first Chief Technology Guru went from Black Rock City, Nevada to Davos, Switzerland, to set up all the tech for the World Economic Forum. A promotion for a job well done, perhaps?

hyperledger-s-executive-director-brian-behlendo-originalBrian Behlendorf, lead developer of Apache and creator of the SFRaves Mailing List, went from being Burning Man’s Chief Technology Guru to the same role for the World Economic Forum. Now he’s Chairman of the Electronic Frontier Foundation (founded by CIA consultant John Perry Barlow) and on the board of crypto-messenger Wickr, along with Gilman Louie (founding CEO of CIA venture capital incubator In-Q-Tel, and former employer of Burning Man founders Carrie Galbraith and Kevin Evans), Jim Breyer (BBN Technologies, early Facebook investor), and former CIA man Joseph Detrani (President of the Intelligence and National Security Alliance). The CIA.gov web site runs on Brian’s Apache software.

Sergey Brin himself is no stranger to the CIA either. His claim above…

he thought about the idea for Google as part of his graduate student project at Stanford University and asked his advisor whether he should become an entrepreneur or finish his PhD, the advisor said: “Why not!? Go for it, and then if it doesn’t work out, you come back, you finish your PhD, which I am still planning on doing.”

Brin said “that mentality permeates Silicon Valley, and I think that’s one of the strengths that it’s not viewed so negatively to try something even if it doesn’t work out.”

…sounds sweet, and suits the mythology of Silicon Valley. A student was encouraged by his professor to drop out of college to become an entrepreneur, he took a risk and achieved great success through hard work, talent and luck. The American Dream! But he’s leaving out a pretty significant component, as Nafeez Ahmed from Insurge Intelligence revealed in his stunning 2015 report How The CIA Made Google: Inside The Secret Network Behind Mass Surveillance, Endless War, and SkyNet

The inside story of Google’s rise, revealed here for the first time, opens a can of worms that goes far beyond Google, unexpectedly shining a light on the existence of a parasitical network driving the evolution of the US national security apparatus, and profiting obscenely from its operation

Nafeez quoted Dr Bhavani Thuraisingham, who stated in 2013 “the Google founder Mr. Sergey Brin was partly funded by this program while he was a PhD student at Stanford”. After Nafeez’s article was published, Dr Thuraisingham dialed that back a little  – heat from the bosses, perhaps? This is from his revised update:

Prof. Jeffrey Ullman (at Stanford) and my colleague at MITRE Dr. Chris Clifton together with some others developed the Query Flocks System, as part of MDDS, which produced solutions for mining large amounts of data stored in databases. Also, Mr. Sergey Brin, the cofounder of Google, was part of Prof. Ullman’s research group at that time. I remember visiting Stanford with Dr. Rick Steinheiser from the Intelligence Community periodically and Mr. Brin would rush in on roller blades, give his presentation and rush out. During our last visit to Stanford in September 1998, Mr. Brin demonstrated to us his search engine which I believe became Google soon after.

 

Despite Dr Thuraisingham’s milquetoast clarification, the story of Google’s intelligence community origins has been independently corroborated by a second source, 20+ year CIA veteran Robert David Steele. Julian Assange wrote an entire book about it, excerpted here: Google Is Not What It Seems.

google guys.pngJust like CIA contractor Timothy Leary was presented before crowds at the 1967 Human Be-In as a leading voice of the counter-culture, so CIA contractor Sergey Brin is presented at Burning Man for Billionaires as the leading voice of the tech world (and hippies). Flower power reigns supreme! If you think endless war and mass surveillance by A.I.’s is cool, then Google is a pretty cool company. Neat-o! Come to Flysalen and learn how to be just like Sergey. Naked.

google doodle

Doodle, by ABC.XYZ

Last year 62 people had as much wealth as the poorest 50% of the world. Thanks to monetarism, that’s now only 8. Of these, 3 are connected to Burning Man: Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, and Oracle founder Larry Ellison (his kids go). Of course, all of those have CIA ties as well. Zuckerberg went to an elite program for gifted children at the Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth in Baltimore, Maryland – as did Sergey Brin and spirit cooking enthusiast Lady Gaga. Zuckerberg then “accidentally met on the street” Sean Parker, who was recruited by the CIA at 16. Parker introduced Zuckerberg to Don Graham, whose family owned the Washington Post – exposed by Carl Bernstein in 1977 as one of the key CIA propaganda assets in Operation MOCKINGBIRD. Graham took a board seat at Facebook, and later sold the Washington Post to Jeff Bezos for $250 million at almost exactly the same time that the CIA gave Amazon an unspecified $600 million deal  (just before Amazon released their Echo always-on listening device). Amazon CEO Bezos is also on the Pentagon technology board with Google CEO Eric Schmidt. Larry Ellison was working for Ampex and the CIA on a database project they named Oracle, after the popular counter-culture magazine that organized the Human Be-In. He left to start his own company funded by a juicy contract with Oracle’s first customer: the CIA.

Silicon Valley’s mantra of “it’s OK to fail” is definitely enhanced when you are working for the military/intelligence community with 55% of the country’s discretionary budget.

 

eric-schmidt-further-future-mirror-vest

Alphabet and Pentagon Innovation Board Chairman Eric Schmidt at the 2016 Further Future Festival in Nevada, organized by the owners of Robot Heart. He claimed in his speech that he was wearing a new generation of bullet/laser-proof vest, recommended by the Defense Department because of the threat of laser weapons. Perhaps he was joking, but the laser threat is no joke. A Burning Man ranger was permanently blinded by a handheld laser in 2014

Hey Plug & Plays, Bring Self-Driving Cars To The Playa!

by Terry Gotham

Unless you’ve been under a rock, you’ve heard about autonomous vehicles, or self-driving cars. It’s moved so far out of the Google/Silicon Valley bubble that late night talk shows are cracking jokes about the emerging technology. The sophistication inherent in these vehicles has been expanding in leaps & bounds, to the point where entire towns have been built to test them. The tech is so good now that there’s not even a point to having a steering wheel. As it starts to move into the realm of policy & actuarial models begin to incorporate these cars, it’s time to give ourselves a break. At the risk of sounding self-important, let’s think of what we can do with these things besides reduce congestion, eliminate drunk driving & dampen carbon emissions worldwide.  The nice things is that some of these cars use the same parts as the regular cars, so if you already have a site when you search about car parts as garage chief you can still use it for a self-driving car.

While I know this is totally impossible for this year’s thing in the desert, I’d love to put it out there to get you thinking about it while you’re roving the playa. I think Google & all of the self-driving car companies need to start field-testing these things out at Black Rock City. I think we’ve seen hundreds of people injure themselves biking in the darkness, everyone has heard or experienced a story where they’re moving around in the dark and someone doesn’t have the right blinky shiny. 

So let’s put these bad boys to work. Just think about it. shuttle service to & from the temple, the DMZ & the man. Chart an expedition to the trash fence & sip cocktails on the way out there. Swarms of autonomous vehicles that follow art cars, having little micro-parties inside of them, while connected to their sound system. I think the people who are developing these vehicles should most certainly think long and hard about investing hardware & experiential gifting to their design arc.

Yes of course people are still going to want control options, and because of the fact that it’s on the playa, maybe they could have them. or maybe it could just be a nice little exercise in “letting go.” I’ve always thought of Burning Man as what a colony of settlers would look like, when we finally get to places otherworldly. I think the futuristic, neo-urban vibe could not only be enhanced by the cars, but building in an automated transit system is possible there more easily than any other art/music festival in the world. But, it would also be hilariously expensive. And this is where all those 1% camps come in. Hey extensively wealthy people who go to the plug & play camps on the outskirts, want to get around & see the cool things, but don’t want to talk to anyone, got an idea for you. What if, y’all funded this stuff, in exchange for having your own personal/slightly better transports. Here’s how it looks: the tech illuminati that hang out at BM just magic’d up a “hazard test” for the technology, brought it to the playa, got everyone to sign a second death waiver, and then can access the service to transport ice, get to the deep playa, or just make it from 10 to 5 without having to bike in the 1pm sun. Obviously, priority would be given to Rangers, Green Dot transporting patients, children, the elderly and that one time you swore you saw a pregnant woman on playa. Transport could have BM radio piped in and be re-directed during events and help ensure people aren’t traveling through the deep playa stoned as fuck.

In exchange, the 1% get future vehicles on playa, and of course, I assume their personal rides would be better than the ones your average attendee would interact with. This, for everyone who has forgotten the time, is the experience most people who don’t have access to art cars experience anyway. This would also give them a way to prove they have something to contribute, even if they don’t want to leave their plug & play camps outside of the IncuBubble rides they’ll be testing out.
Some of this may be tongue in cheek, but I think this is definitely within the realm of the possible. Especially with the micro-deployment that could be tested out, in addition to the more sophisticated feedback you’d just happen to get because of the breadth & depth of technical experience and straight up lifestyle of the different burners using your product.

People keep asking for their jetpack as proof that it’s the future. Forget jetpacks. I want my robot car. Specifically, I want a robot car to take me from party to party on playa & when I get bored of that, I want to be able to tell it to follow whatever art car replaces the Dancetronauts juggernaut. It’ll drive along matching speed & direction, possibly even broadcasting the audio out of the speaker system inside of my pod car. Perhaps a couple of channels, illustrated by what color the pod glows. Kind of like Silent Disco headsets, but with cars. Do you agree?

Is This The New New Thing?

Larry's expression when Kucinich asks "what about your humanity?"

Larry’s expression when Kucinich asks “what about your humanity?”

 

I have just stumbled across youtube.com/burningman. Sure, there have always been plenty of YouTube videos about Burning Man – earning revenue for Google whenever they play. This seems to be something more co-ordinated, though. Many of the videos have an intro that says “From the Burning Man Archives”. This is accompanied by old fashioned World War 2 propaganda film music, a thematic resonance with Caveat Magister’s “not official” Burning Man Minute series…

24 videos have been added in the past week, showcasing Regionals as well as ancient history. Another 6 were added a month ago from the 2015 Global Leadership Conference.

Some of the videos on the channel are showing ads. We may never know whether this revenue is being donated to the Burning Man Project, or channelled into Decommodification, LLC. Whoever gets it, someone is Commodifying Burning Man here:

Screenshot 2015-07-18 16.57.19

Is this return to the old being simultaneously accompanied by an attack on the new?

And is the “really really BIG RAD thing” we were promised was “coming soon” last November? A bunch of video content released from the archives, and a bunch more created from the Founders’ philosophical discussions?

They seem to be kicking off with Larry Harvey interviewing Denis Kucinich at this year’s Global Leadership Conference.

Here’s the full interview from YTBM, if time is limited skip down to the next clip which is the main highlight I want to discuss.

DK: “What I saw at Burning Man is, there’s a new matrix being built“…

DK: “What Burning Man does is to create a space, that no other organization has created in quite this way, to creatively explore the human potential for an evolutionary response to the challenges of our times. The world today is beset by so much conflict, people are yearning for an opportunity to get past it and find a way to come together”

Larry: “Meaningful political dialogue is in many ways increasingly inhibited by both money and aspects of the media. I’m not anti media, books are media , media implies communication and that’s a good thing

DK: “The politics that you describe…Burning Man creates a platform for a whole new discussion about everything, for a whole new relationship we have with each other, with our government, and that’s what I think is so valuable. When I see a space for a new discussion, I’m exhilirated. I think wow! We can actually have a real discussion about what the implications are without anybody worried about “well, what’s the party going to think about this” or “what are my supporters going to think about it”. Burning Man is in a position to go very deep in the implications of the current system and to have a discussion which has the potential to produce solutions that otherwise couldn’t be brought forward because existing structures are so hidebound, in tradition and in political practice, that there’s a limitation in the dialogue that occurs and they can’t really get to any kind of a synthesis outside the box that they’re in. Burning Man begins outside…Burning Man is not in a box, and that’s the beauty of it”.

So Larry’s a talk show host now?

While the politicians are being inspired by the creativity of Burning Man, BMOrg themselves seem to keep coming up with rules, bans, and punishments – all things notorious for stifling creativity.

Although only 45 seconds long, the clip above may give us some insight into the collective Borg mindset these days. It is interesting that they chose to create this as a highlight of the entire interview.

“We don’t prescribe content, we design context”.

Perhaps this philosophy explains some of the recent EDM war battles like Dancetronauts, Opulent Temple, and now Mayan Warrior.

Mayan Warrior, a popular art car with more than 22,000 Likes, said “we’re bringing these DJs”:

mayanwarrior2015

…then got publicly slammed (and threatened) in the wee hours of Friday morning by the Burning Man CEO.

Screenshot 2015-07-18 10.53.17

Why did they get slammed? Because of the content they published. Of course, Burning man doesn’t prescribe content.

No matter that the policy hasn’t even been created yet. Nobody has been told the rules, all we have is a story in BRC Weekly from last year, publicly shaming White Ocean:

sound camp lineup ban

They’re doing it for the Burners. So we can all have more chance to win tickets in the OMG sale. Right. 80,000 Burners missed out on the general sale. The majority of Burners who tried to get tickets, didn’t. There don’t seem to be many STEP successes. So we already have 79,000 Burners who are going to miss out on the remaining 1,000 tickets. There is already a 99% chance you’re not going to get a ticket in the OMG. So what if more people hear about Burning Man and want to go? And on that point, what about Grover, Denis, Diddy, and all the other celebs who have been commodifying Burning Man by talking about it to non-Burner audiences? Is their crowd OK, but Mayan Warrior’s isn’t? Whatever happened to radical inclusion?

For the sin of publishing unprescribed content, Mayan Warrior couldn’t just get a personal message alerting them that they’d broken an unwritten rule, asking kindly if they could please make it right. No, they had to get a public statement against them, a shaming. Then, even when they fixed the problem and apologized, the statement remains. And, 2 days later, there is still no policy or description of what rules were broken.

Prescribing content is just fine in this post from BMOrg telling us which art projects they selected to receive our money this year. Decommodification is no problem when it comes to soliciting money for a select few of those (I wonder if BMOrg get a percentage?).

“Music is not art, and people dancing to a DJ are not interacting with the music” seems to be the new party line.

The vision behind the Mayan Warrior is amazing. A crew from Mexico, passionate about music, wanted to make an art car and bring it to Burning Man with local DJs playing. They could showcase the modern day sounds of Mexico to Burners from all around the world! They could share their culture with us as a gift.

mayan warriorThe Mayan Warrior art car has just released some of the first names who will play at Black Rock City this year. The Mayan Warrior was originally created to showcase the music of Mexican electronic artists at Burning Man. Pablo Gonzalez Vargas, the executive producer of the interactive mobile and sound system since 2011, explained that the car was inspired by the playa’s limitless creativity, and the Mayan visual concept comes from ancient Mayan culture, crop circles, and principles of sacred geometry.

[Source: Dancing Astronaut]

Of course, if the Mayan Warrior didn’t tell us that their vision was to bring Mexican DJs, we would not get a fundamental point of the gift. The first time I saw the art car, I didn’t even realize that its face was Mayan. Sometimes, to get the context of art, you need some sort of description of the content. I would much rather they let us know which DJs will be playing in a flyer, than by getting on the mic every 10 minutes to say “this is DJ So and So, how you feeling BURRRRNNNNNINNNNNGGGG MANNNNNNNNN!!!!”

This year's Man design. Image: Burning Man

This year’s Man design. Image: Burning Man

Meanwhile, the geniuses at Burning Man HQ spend decades in the lab “designing context” – that is to say:

  • “CARgo Cult”, “CARavansary”, and “CARnival of Mirrors”
  • A UFO with the Man on top, a plain Man but giant on top of a market, a plain Man but giant on top of a circus.
  • Words from A-L that are supposed to be connected with the theme (like “geek” and “carnival”).

What Larry’s saying is that’s what made Burning Man great and brought the population up to 70,000: those 3 designs (which did what the 17 themes before them couldn’t) and the street names. Not the content: the music, the dancing, the art, the Burners, the beautiful people and the sex and drugs: no, the themes. The “context” for “our” self-expression. Because of the inspiration designed into these themes, we now have Google, Tesla, SpaceX, and Solar City.

(Side note: in 1998, when Google famously launched themselves with Burning Man’s logo on their home page, the theme was Nebulous Entity. Given the revelations that have since come out of Google’s relationship with spy agencies, hey, perhaps this theme did actually inspire them!)

Or am I missing something: does BMOrg “design context” and socially engineer us in other ways?

Personally, I think Larry has it all wrong. Burning Man takes place in the desert in Nevada, not an ivory tower in the Mission. Burners supply the creativity and inspiration. Burners have the ideas. Most Burner art and activities have nothing to do with the themes – many Burners don’t even know (or care) what the theme is. We give money to artists to create the art. We give money to Burning Man’s charity – they take most of it for their own expenses, and pass a small percentage of it on to the artists to create the art. All the art projects they choose to redistribute our money to still need further support from the community to make it out to the temporary city and back. We give money to BMOrg to buy our tickets. They use it to rent portapotties and pay the cops and buy ice creams for the Federales.

I am not convinced by this “Burning Man TV” 2.0 philosophy. Burners can change the world, and the first step to do this is banning things and making more rules. Err, what?

I’m still on the side of the Burners. Burning Man is awesome because of everything all of us contribute to it, not the theme or the First Camp guest list.

BMOrg are Commodifying the culture we create for each other, when they use it to promote the politicians they want to curry favor with, the commercial tour package vendors that are their mates, the artists they choose to receive the funds we’ve given them, and the vendors that they choose to give monopolies to. We’re supposed to just accept that all of that is fine, but if your camp wants to bring musicians, and tell people who you’re bringing? You must be punished. We’re gonna ban your art car and shame you to the community. Because, Decommodification – the alleged Principle, not the ironically named LLC.

They are trying to create a gravitas around themselves. “We mingle with politicians! The Google guys and Elon Musk go and get technology ideas there! VCs network and do deals!” They want to re-shape the event in their own image, to support their importance in cultural history.

Meanwhile, many Burners love music, and appreciate it as art just as much – maybe even more – than taint washes and polyamory workshops. These Burners want to lose it on the dancefloor to their favorite DJs. They want to hear amazing new music that draws them in from a distance and keeps them for hours, in a crowd who are all sharing a special moment together, united by the beats. They want to discover new artists to become fans of. Camps who are gifting those DJs are getting excited about it, and want to share the good news so Burners can get excited too.

They must be banned. All that fun is getting in the way of a pie-in-the-sky vision for “what Burning Man could become”, that politicians who went once and went to bed early are now espousing. Crack down on doof. Implement more rules, more policies, more restrictions on Burners’ freedom. Jack ticket prices sky high, to price out the dirty hippie freaks. Bring in more cops so you can try to promote it as family friendly. Favor rich new tourists over hard-working veterans. Promote it in the mainstream media, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Inc, The Simpsons. Bring politicians who will recruit more politicians, maybe they can get this apathetic disillusioned bloc of Burners escaping from the Default World to get off their disgruntled asses and vote – for them, natch.

How will human potential evolve, by banning more and more cool stuff that Burners gift? If communication is a good thing, why can’t BMOrg communicate what the rules are to everyone at the same time? Why can’t camps communicate what art they’re bringing? Because, scalpers? Because, EDM fans are bad but politicians are desirable?

art car sharkIs this the new new thing? Is this what we jumped over the shark for?

 

There’s some fierce debate on the Interwebz already about this issue, with some who are not EDM fans saying “good riddance” and wishing for a return to the past. You can’t go backwards, people. I don’t like seeing so many people on smart phones on the Playa, but the answer isn’t “ban smartphones”.

Last year a camp (White Ocean) and this year an art car (Mayan Warrior) were publicly scolded by Burning Man, despite not breaking any actual rules. They committed pre-crime, like in Minority Report. The policy is still, as I write this, unwritten and “coming soon”. How hard can it be to write a paragraph? Is this some holocracy thing we’re waiting on, establishing consensus within BMHQ?

The BMOrg supporters echo Maid Marian’s argument that publishing your events in advance might lead to people wanting to come to Burning Man who we don’t want there. These people might think that the whole thing is a festival, because there are certain events on at pre-set times.

Well, take a look at this, Burners. Here are some of the 2015 Burning Man events that have already been published. Apparently every single one of these is fine, including those that feature named stars, because this is at burningman.org. It is just EDM events they have a problem with. #radicalinclusion #gratitude

Note: these are just the events on Monday August 31.

From burningman.org:

Scheduled Events

See also:

PulseRadio.Net: Burning Man vs EDM – Is The Hammer Starting To Drop?

 

Here’s How To Make Your Own Dreamscope A.I. Images

ai burn 5

The famous movie Blade Runner is based on Philip K Dick’s story Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep? Recently Google, makers of Android and robots, have been blowing up the Interwebz with their Artificial Intelligence that they taught to dream.

Now you too can use this capability. Click here to use the Dreamscope app. Big thanks to Adam for sharing this.

Put any image you want in, and choose an effect:

Screenshot 2015-07-16 11.50.30

Here are some Burner images already generated. Please share your own in the comments.

 

 

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