New Media – Art or Science?

9 Sep

by Jan Hutchins, CEO of SocialAgenda Media.

My original urge was to title this blog New Media – Art or Science? I’m an artist at heart and have consistently felt an emotional reaction when directed to do SEO to decide the subject matter and flow of ideas for something I’m writing. Don’t get me wrong, I recognize the utilitarian need but find myself chafing at having my creative impulse subjected to the search habits of the masses.

Forgive the comparison but would Shakespeare have checked Google Ad Words to decide the subject of his next play? Is there not something that is more about commerce than art in seeing what people are most likely to want before I create?

I didn’t need to spend much time researching data about my emotional experience before I reached the conclusion that it is not Art or Science? but rather Art & Science.

This quote attributed to the first black woman in space ended the debate for me…

‘Science or art? A ridiculous choice. The arts and sciences are connected. And our mission, says Dr. [Mae] Jemison, is to reconcile and reintegrate science and the arts. Both the arts and the sciences, says Dr. Jemison, are not merely connected but manifestations of the same thing — they are our attempt to build an understanding of the universe, and our attempt to influence things (things in the universe internal to ourselves and the universe external to ourselves). “The arts and sciences are avatars of human creativity — [they] are our attempt as humans to build an understanding of the world around us….”‘]

My emotions regularly create trouble for me and once again they were guiding me away from the very balance and perspective I seek. Dr. Jemison was able to the face the unbelievable fear of being blasted into outer space because of the understanding expressed in that quote. I can face the fact that I want this to be read by as many people as possible and thus have a powerful positive impact on the universe external to myself.

And it’s not lost on me that I found her quote and lots of other interesting perspectives on the matter so easily because of the same search engine miracle that caused my emotional reactions to having to have my writing optimized.

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