…raise up both yer hands.
Marketing is important to business. Marketing allows a business to achieve its goals by reaching out to people.
Yet Marketing also screws the ppoch too, too many times. Case in point: IttyBiz takes Marketing to task.
Sometimes evil lurks in the links of man.
By now you’ve heard that the Museum of Modern Art in New York has, er, acquired the @ symbol. Not a sculpture of the symbol, not a patent on the symbol, not a specific visual representation of or specification of the symbol.
MoMA claims to have “acquired” the symbol itself.
To describe/define their approach, Paola Antonelli, Senior Curator, Department of Architecture and Design, writes
The acquisition of @ takes one more step. It relies on the assumption that physical possession of an object as a requirement for an acquisition is no longer necessary, and therefore it sets curators free to tag the world and acknowledge things that “cannot be had”—because they are too big (buildings, Boeing 747’s, satellites), or because they are in the air and belong to everybody and to no one, like the @—as art objects befitting MoMA’s collection. The same criteria of quality, relevance, and overall excellence shared by all objects in MoMA’s collection also apply to these entities.
Post-post-modernist this may be, but it strikes me as a bit of emperor’s new clothes. I take a bit of exception at their use of “object”—isn’t physicality a requirement to acquisition of objects? “Object of affection” still implies something physical in most cases.
Yass, yass, I know…exceptions abound. And MoMA is playing here, of course. They are playing with language, they are playing with politics, they are playing with their own field (of museumology, as it were). I appreciate that modern art as a construct must, by definition, reinvent itself (does anyone feel weird saying that Rand and Wright and Neutra are “modern”?). At some point, one can go too far.
Ultimately, “acquisition” is probably the wrong word here. Perhaps “appropriation” is better?
Next month, the 11th Information Architecture Summit takes place, this time in Phoenix, AZ.
I’ve not gone to all of the summits…but darn near all of them. I was there in Boston in 2000 at the Logan Airport Hilton, back when the American Society of Information Science (before the Technology addition) first came up with the idea that there was something out there called “information architecture” that folks were dealing with. From the publication of Richard Saul Wurman’s Information Architects and Lou Rosenfeld & Peter Morville’s Information Architecture for the World Wide Web, a buzzword grew in its approach to structure, classification, organization, and findability of (mostly) Web-based experiences.
I remember that first summit fondly, if for the reasons that I was excited about being an HCI consultant with IconMedialab in Hamburg. I remember the first Five Minute Madness, where Peter Merholz grappled with the core disagreements that had been bubbling under all weekend. I remember Dick Hill working like a maniac to make things happen. I remember the insights from people like Christina Wodtke and Noel Franus and Eric Reiss on the perqs and pitfalls of being independent–how prescient they were! And I remember seeing the Neville Brothers in Cambridge, capping my first (but certainly not last) trip to Boston.
So much has changed since then, not only in the IA Summit world but also in the greater IA and UX world. Yet this summit continues to bring relevance, education, and connection that’s so critical to our community.