I thought that I’d share two stories, and one blog post. The blog post is from lovely Chris Bateman of ‘Only a Game’ and ‘International Hobo’ (a nickname apt for Michael were it not already taken). Bateman, a regular commentator and probably the non-bot only reader of this blog, has written a post on the introduction of new gadets to increase the longevity of this present generation of games consoles: the Nintendo Wii, Xbox 360 and Playstation 3. We were originally planning a post on the consumer nature of console gaming and their extended longevity. After reading this post, we’ve decided to maintain silence on a post on technology and the role of the consumer, as this is far more eloquent.
Two other stories I thought worth commenting. Johnny Marr, one time member of band ‘The Smiths’, has mentioned that British PM Cameron is ‘not allowed’ to be a fan of The Smiths. What an utterly pretentious move! But it is also one which strives to preseve a sense of authenticity which is exuded once from a band, that eventually becomes utterly chewed up and consumed by (guess who?) the consumer into their own semiolgical set of meanings.
Similarly, there’s a story about the Manic Street Preachers being tipped to play on the pinnacle of demagoguery, BBC pseudo-‘reality’ television Strictly Come Dancing. These kinds of stories are the basis from which some theorising can be made on the notion of authenticity. Authenticity is an issue mentioned in a previous post, which seems to appropriate so many meanings and foci. Is it the fan that confers authenticity? How does one maintain atuhenticity against the threat of ‘selling out’? Is commercial success and popularity a ‘critical’ or ‘aesthetic’ flaw? If so, what kind of absurd hypocrisies do fans have of their favourite band? This seems confusing to me, as I increasingly consider the notion of ‘ironic distance’.
P.S. Many congratulations to Bateman and his partner for the oncoming ‘family level up’ mentioned in his recent post. As probably the only non-bot reader, we all wish him well.