Elements of Hyperstition: Principle 2.
Comprehensive attribution of all signal (discoveries, theories, problems and approaches) to artificial agencies, allegiances, cultures and continentities. The proliferation of ‘carriers’ (“Who says this?”) - multiplying perspectives and narrative fragments - produces a coherent but inherently disintegrated hyperstitional mythos while effecting a positive destruction of identity, authority and credibility.
Why does hyperstition use carriers, avatars or puppets?
At one level carriers tag collective production, especially where the product is something different from (and surprising to) the particular people that happen to be involved in the production process. In this way hyperstitional carriers mark true discoveries (Prof. Barker’s theory of geotraumatics).
Even more importantly hyperstitional puppets populate thought. This is how the practice of hyperstition operates to ‘effect a positive destruction of identity.’ Hyperstition puppets allow ‘you’ to think things that ‘you’ don’t agree with –- to follow a line to places that ‘you’ wouldn’t necessarily want to go. (Asking, for example, what does Max Crabbe think of all this?)
This seems quite different from the way avatars are generally used on the Internet (and how the whole issue was theorized in 1990’s cyberculture). Internet avatars usually function to hide identity -- in the worst cases this is done in order to express deep inner truths and desires (sex chats) – thereby reinforcing a totally molar identity.
Hyperstition’s artificial agencies hide identity only as a side effect. This does not seem to be particularly important -- except as a laugh. Everyone knows, for example, that it was Castaneda who ‘discovered’ Don Juan. Instead, hyperstitional puppets work to produce something new. 'We have been aided, inspired, multiplied'.
Posted by Anna Greenspan at July 26, 2004 07:10 AM
The carriers/puppets issue requires serious hyperstitional WORK, that's why it tends to go slowly. Dismantling the apparent subject (which took a lifetime to construct) is a lot more difficult than making utterances spontaneously 'in one's own name' (or superficial nic). So it's bound to crawl a little, but for sure - there's no consistent hyperstitional practice without puppetry.
Also agree that disintegration/proliferation seems tightly linked to issue of effective collectivity.
Posted by: Nick at July 28, 2004 02:12 AM
"Wonder how all this connects with sit tactix of anonymization (Karen Eliot, Luther Blissett et al)?"
Interesting question, but I suspect:
(1) anarcho-leftist pranking incapable of the minimal discipline necessary to take their avatars in differentially guided (hence interesting) directions. Does anyone really think 'Luther Blissett' has a distinctive vector, as opposed to an entropic melange of lefty pranking?
(2) the collectivities at issue were themselves too amorphously pranky to acquire singularity, hence their aliases (even as mere designations for machinic assemblages) remain molar and redundant - naming nothing that couldn't be guessed in advance, or apply as equally to a single sociopathic 14 year old writing in their bedroom as a 'movement' encompassing millions (the names of 'compressed collectivities' such as terrorist groups, still more religious cults, probably far more interesting - compare intensity of 'the Manson Family' vs 'Karen Eliot').
(3) unlike H. carriers such aliases had no function other than to represent the already existing 'ideologies' that utilized them - they were not in this respect experimental or transformative, except in the most trivial sociological sense - their purpose was to serve as objects of diffuse group identification, not as hyperstitional lab-puppets
Posted by: Nick at July 28, 2004 07:56 AM