It’s amazing how the will to contribute can just be sapped right away

I cut my internet teeth on forums. I would rarely post a topic of my own but I really like to look at what someone has written and respond, and then when they tell me I’m wrong build an argument to prove conclusively that they haven’t got a leg to stand on. I find myself working best when I have a proposition to work against, rather than working in a vacuum. I haven’t yet found a realm in the real world where I can really apply this skill but it works well on the internet and despite my tiny tiny blog now growing (and never being written in) I regularly have people contact me on the internet and let me know that they enjoy reading what I have to say.

It’s not that I’m not creative, in a manner, you cannot tear down someones faulty argument without putting another argument in its place, it’s that I miss that tactile feedback that comes from a discussion. I feel like I’m wasting time when I go out of my way to write something that is not in response to someone else. I also feel like I’m at least doing that a little when I have a private discussion rather than a public one. I thrive on that sense of a community gaining from the progress that comes out of a good discussion. I occasionally think that I might be able to build up a head of steam and build a community, and that that community experience would lead to the positive constructive atmosphere, but I never feel that feedback when I’m starting out with a blank slate.

Somehow I’ve got to cultivate the will to contribute to the world, rather than to merely grind the burrs that I see off of other peoples work. I think that bur grinding is important, that’s why I do it, but I think that ultimately cold contribution is more rewarding, if in an ultimate rather than a proximate sense.


About opcnup

Emerson White is a biology student working on post grad while doing private research on the side.
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