Random Thoughts: Human Brand Condition 2005

March 23rd, 2005 | brainjuice

In mediascape 2005, how many things can a person be?

I’m a writer. There are something like 55 books with my name on currently residing on amazon.com. I have my own Wikipedia entry and I’m apparently a celebrity atheist. People remix photos of me. So I have kind of a head start. Let’s assume you’ve got a website of some kind, a computer that does stuff without coal and a hand crank, and the sick wish to worm yourself into people’s brains. How many ways can you do that?

Record a short mp3 and you’re a ringtone. Take a picture and cut it down to around 150 pixels across by 200 tall and you’re a phone wallpaper. How simple is that? Anyone whose phone is equipped with a way of changing its screen’s appearance can carry you in their pocket. PayPal five US dollars a month to LibSyn and you’re a broadcaster, sending out audio and/or video to anyone who wants it. If it’s just audio, stream it off a MySpace page for free. You can be a t-shirt, a coffee cup, a visual brand across a bunch of objects. You can be a badge or a sticker. A photographic print, a magazine, a book, a pack of postcards. An instant messaging icon, an LJ icon or a message board avatar.

Right there: an image, a sound, a radio star, a video star, a brand, a slogan, art, thought, iconography.

If someone had a mind to, they could become their own internet-powered brand with some speed. Tons of people could do it. They could design themselves to infiltrate cellphones and iPods, all the shit we’re told to own, all the shit we want to own for the pleasure of it but which by design comes contentless.

A bunch of people actually attempting to take back the process of human productisation (as opposed to ignoring or fighting it) on an intensive basis…

I seem to remember Lydia Lunch once saying she’d much rather people jerk off over her than Debbie Gibson.

[related: 4GM]


2 Responses to “Random Thoughts: Human Brand Condition 2005”



  1. ‘Human Brand Condition 2005′
    Warren Ellis with some ruminations, over-the-top and weirdly inspiring as usual: If someone had a mind to, they could become their own internet-powered brand with some speed. Tons of people could do it. They could design themselves to infiltrate cellph…



  2. Warren Ellis on human branding

    From tattoos to the use of your voice as a ringtone or your picture as wallpaper, Warren Ellis takes an interesting cut across self-branding. That is, the ways in which branding techniques have been co-opted by the digerati and individualism to creat…