“So listen, next step is to get as many more people (not repeat persons, but new people) to comment AND I just found out that the more people who link to me, the better chance I have to get sponsors-and when I do I will make NEW cartoons for you! I have more crap to show you, so as soon as I hit 400 comments…”
John Kriscfalusi, the artist behind Ren & Stimpy, is discovering the power of popularity on the Internet. His blog was linked at Boing Boing on the 15th, and elsewhere on the ‘net, and he’s been surprised by his reception, apparently.
The amount of traffic necessary to make direct marketing between the producer and consumer is significantly less than when there is a oligonomy determining the prices offered to producers and costs to consumers between them and filtering projects out which have significant appeal to the long tail.
This is the spring from which hope flows for the future of popular properties that the media conglomerates do not support, such as Firefly and Dead Like Me, to name only two that have been significant to me recently.
On the cusp, where projects like Rocket Boom meet the public demand and are rewarded, of a new world of media. The print revolution put democratized the transmission of knowledge. The computer democratized publishing. The Internet has been trying very hard to democratize radio, television and cinema. Internet radio failed to survive the legal onslaught of major media, once they awoke to the fight. I wait with baited breathe to see if podcasting will survive being co-opted by major media. Although it is not completely out of the woods yet. It does seem there are new platforms for distribution and creation almost daily. Perhaps the next step will manage some kind of victory.
This pattern of democratization brings to mind the democratization of virtual space, such as the place of MMORPGs in increasingly player-driven games. I’ve been thinking about all the waves that have attempted to provide a topology to the virtual world, and just a little while ago I thought to include the MMORPGs in this. These virtual spaces have routes and sights and crossroads wherein many of the activities of socialization occur, but bound by a geography.