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the meta-belief that belief and identity are tools

December 19, 2016 Leave a comment

from “Occult Origins: Hakim Bey’s Ontological Post-Anarchism” by Joseph Christian Greer in Anarchist Developments in Cultural Studies

Essential to Chaos Magick is the meta-belief that belief and identity are tools, indeed “magickal force[s]”, that can be used to manipulate reality according to one’s will (Caroll, 1987:39-41)

Categories: reality hacking

living an invented life as doppelgängers

December 18, 2016 Leave a comment

from The Lives of Ronald Pinn by Andrew O’Hagan

Many of our modern crimes are crimes of the imagination. We think of the unspeakable and exchange information on it. We commit a ‘thought-crime’ – giving the illicit or the abominable an audience. Some of us pretend to have relationships we don’t actually have just for the sense of freedom it gives us, and some want porn for that reason too. Building the fake Ronnie became something more than creating a character in a novel: it became personal, like living another life, as an actor might, trying not only to imitate the experience of a possible person but to test the meaning and limits of empathy. {…}
My special effects helper asked me if I’d heard of Weavrs.

‘What’s that?’

‘It’s where you’re going,’ he said. According to their website, Weavrs are ‘personality-based social-web robots’ that ‘publicly blog about how they feel, where they go and what they experience’. An article by Olivia Solon in Wired magazine questioned the guys behind it. ‘The team … won’t reveal exactly how the Weavrs algorithm works – referring to it as their black box,’ Solon wrote, ‘but say they create personalities from social data that then “blog themselves into existence”.’ It’s taken for granted in these circles that digital robots are becoming a tool of big business; in China, for instance, Weavrs are used to collect data on young people and their preferences. In the old days researchers would speak to individuals, but nowadays the invented person, the digividual, is more reliable when it comes to showing what people want.
{…}
After a while, an alarm bell went off somewhere, and Facebook sent a warning. ‘Please verify your identity,’ it said. ‘Facebook does not allow accounts that: Pretend to be someone else; Use a fake name; Don’t represent a real person.’ But the fakery of the fake Ronnie’s fake friends didn’t trouble them for long. It was just another robot sending the warning, moved to do so after a number of keystrokes set off the alarm. But the fakery continued to go deeper and Ronnie Pinn grew in reality and the warnings disappeared. Facebook has 864 million daily users, of whom at least 67 million are believed by the company to be fake. There are more social media ghosts, more people being second people, or living an invented life as doppelgängers, than there are citizens of the UK.

(excellent article, btw)

Categories: hyperstition