How the Internet Kills Creativity

4 Million Hits - No ideas are new
To Begin with - No Beginning of anything

It's fortunate for all of us that when God set out to craft the Garden of Eden - and thus the venue for the creation of humankind, she did not have access to the Internet.

If she did, the Lord (Lady ?) would have discovered that someone else was already working on a similar project.

In addition to the Internet’s seductive capacity to distract, it would have stalled the entire Creation scheme by putting its status and value as a unique enterprise in doubt.
The idea certainly would not have seemed like fodder for the opening chapter of an important book nor would it appear to be something worthy of a deity whether she had infinite time on her hands or not.  As One who aimed to be the Great Creator, the heartbroken Lord/Lady  would have been forced to abandon the idea. Upon learning that this concept was not unique and not really needed, God most certainly would have sought out another, more worthy focus for her energies and exceptional talents.

As it turns out, someone else was, in fact, hammering out their own creation narrative in oblivious ignorance across the valley, and this work spawned more humans and a set of non-sibling women for Adam and Eve’s sons, Cain and Abel, to marry. The absence of the Internet at the dawn of humanity thus prevented inbreeding and saved you and me from learning the banjo and living with the countenance of a Habsburg. It was good that at least two or more efforts at Creation were underway at the same time.

he same is true in many other instances throughout the subsequent development of civilization; ignorance of others and the rest of the world has fuelled many innovations and insights down through human history. It has always been for the best.
Even those who do not accept the literal account of Creation should appreciate the absence of the Internet during the era of other great advances.

The Theory of Evolution/Structure of DNA
Ignorance of Others
When Charles Darwin learned that another naturalist and thinker, Alfred Russell Wallace, had independently developed a theory of natural selection and the underpinnings of the concept of evolution, it prompted waffling Darwin to refine, tie up, and finally publish On the Origin of Species.

A.R. Wallace’s raw ideas were known in some science circles, and Darwin and friends sought to give the flakey Wallace some credit. But, the Theory of Evolution was impactful and robust because of the deeper thinking, extensive research, and smidgen of respect that the scholarly and religious Darwin brought to the table. Had Wallace been able to Blog – - about his ideas from his laptop in the Malay jungle, the theory would have been branded as the baby of a fevered Spiritualist and vagabond. The timid Darwin, his networks, and his credibility might have recoiled from the controversy to leave the world, not just candidates in Presidential primaries, to debate the issue of evolution to this day.

A century later, just as computers were coming on stream but well before a pervasive Internet, Watson and Crick were able to elucidate the structure of DNA unperturbed by annoying direct knowledge of the prior work of woman scientist Rosalind Franklin. They could absorb her ideas indirectly and integrate them into their work with an enthusiasm, poise, and confidence that would not have existed had they been compelled by Internet postings to include her in their Facebook™ Friends and research team. The awkward multi-gender collaboration might easily have been led into postulating a triple helix just to satisfy everyone.  Who know ?

The Internet would have posed similar threats to advances in physical sciences as well.
Newton, Math, and Gravity

From what I have read about German philosopher, mathematician, and silly wig wearer, Gottfried Leibniz, it is clear that, had he been empowered with access to the Internet, a Twitter™ account, and a mobile phone app for daily posts, he would have sprinkled the planet with infinitesimal detail about his infinitesimally detailed study of calculus. This would have certainly disrupted the work of British big wig scientist Isaac Newton and robbed us of Newton’s greatest contributions. Sir Isaac, oblivious to Leibniz and much else that an early Internet might have rubbed in his face, marched ahead believing his insights involving calculus to be uniquely his and applying them to the work that manifested in his monumental, three-volume groundbreaker, the PhilosophiƦ Naturalis Principia Mathematica.

Whether he or Gottfried got the calculus idea first or whether both were struck simultaneously with bolts from the same intellectual thunder cloud matters little in the Internet spotlight. Newton, another proud scientist-philosopher, would not have been able to endure daily online flamings and verbal assaults in the imaginary 17th century blogoshere nearly as well as he did engineering the post-publication scholarly debates with the lesser light Leibniz. The world would never have experienced the geometry, the laws of motions, and the philosophical angles that Newton brought to the calculus equation and to theories that found much of modern math, science, and engineering.

Well, maybe. Possibly.  Again who knows ?
The Internet even whacked Googelwhack

What I do know is that my own personal creative aspirations have been repeatedly and increasingly shut down by the ignorance-bashing Internet. Hundreds of great ideas are snuffed out in the crib by Google results that mock me and my ideas with evidence that they have already been thought, typed, and sent by thousands of searchable others. It gets worse by the day.

Nearly a decade ago the odd game Googlewhack™ was launched challenging Internet users to propose two words that would be found on a single page and only on a single page in what was then an emerging sea of web sites. Facebook™, Twitter™, and this blog did not even exist back then. Billions and billions of pages have been added to the cyber world over the ensuing years and the chances of ever finding a remaining Googlewhack™ have diminished into one over infinity. Today, Googlewhack the game survives no more, and I have to think that, in part, it is because there are no more two-word combinations left to whack. It has all been said and sent into the Internet before and many times even down to the shortest phrase.

Try to register a novel Internet domain name that does not use hieroglyphics, transcriptions of the clicking sounds of African bush languages, or the symbol formally known as Prince, and you will see what I mean. Only the boring, the useless, and the non-creative remain. Scratch further and you will see that no writing, no invention, no creation is truly original and beyond influence or the likelihood of simultaneous conception elsewhere. This is not in itself a bad thing as we want our creations to be things that resonate with others, that have been influenced by the desires of others, and that others are probably lusting at some level of consciousness.

But it can be destructively disheartening for those that want to create and contribute uniquely; for it is in the long term commitment to an idea and the persistence beyond all reason that true influential creation emerges. What the Internet provides is the rippling, jetsam and flotsam filled surface of the ocean of creativity within us.

We need to breakthrough it and dive deeper to grab the real treasures.

I came to this probably unoriginal realization this week while seeking to clean up this Blog and focus its messy message.

Since every advertiser, publisher, and billboard writer in the world seems to be expressing themselves in groupings of three (3), single-syllable words – “Eat, Pray, and Love”-style, I suppose that I should not have been surprised by the Google results for the three words now at the top of this page (Dream. Think. Laugh.) I was not only informed of their widespread previous use, but also the means by which one could purchase coffee mugs, T-Shirts, and buttons thus trilogically adorned.

So, I use those words and the ideas of others with a mix of acquiescence and defiance. I have no choice but to assume the absence of uniqueness and the likelihood that any thoughts I am having are also being formed in the brain of another sitting at a keyboard somewhere else on the planet right now. Perhaps, this is why I have fallen into parody (see Don Quixote in Government) as my chosen mode of creative expression.

Parody begins with the presumption of infringement upon prior art.

Notwithstanding all this evidence and my resignation, I cling to the hope that this may be the very first essay in history to link God, the Internet, my blog, and Liebniz’s wig together in a strand.
Screen Shot 2 minutes Later - 59 Thousand Hits 

But I am not sure, and I doubt it.

So, I am going to push “Save” and post this spiel on my Blog - right now - before I go and check the Internet - to confirm, once again, my lack of creativity.