Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Spread it like a Virus

The Donate to AW page. Self-explanatory.

The AbsoluteWrite Water Cooler is an online forum for writers, but much more besides. This is a place where the Would-Be can learn from the Been-There.

Link it up, if you'd be so kind. Spread the word.

As we venture into this brave new world of invisible, wireless connections to one another all over the world, venues like AW are at the forefront, establishing a new paradigm for "community."

A simple definition of community :

com·mu·ni·ty Audio pronunciation of "community" ( P ) Pronunciation Key (k-myn-t)
n. pl. com·mu·ni·ties
    1. A group of people living in the same locality and under the same government.
    2. The district or locality in which such a group lives.
    1. A group of people having common interests: the scientific community; the international business community.
    2. A group viewed as forming a distinct segment of society: the gay community; the community of color.
    1. Similarity or identity: a community of interests.
    2. Sharing, participation, and fellowship.
  1. Society as a whole; the public.
  2. Ecology.
    1. A group of plants and animals living and interacting with one another in a specific region under relatively similar environmental conditions.
    2. The region occupied by a group of interacting organisms.

[Middle English communite, citizenry, from Old French, from Latin commnits, fellowship, from commnis, common. See common.]

What the dictionary definitions fail to capture, and why a simple dictionary definition is nearly always inadequate when establishing an agreed-upon lexicon of shared vocabulary and definition, is the complex interplay of association and emotion connected to an especially powerful word.

This is one of those words.


Unknown said...

Gemeinschaft gut! Gesellschaft nicht gut!

Down with Francis Fukuyama!

Anonymous said...

I dunno, Mac, I kinda like the interacting organisms one... *g*

Anonymous said...

Really terrific, Mac.