I guess this is only partly off topic, because given the nature of the music biz, any time there is a chance to mention optimism we should take it. (I’m actually very optimistic about the business of music moving forward. Less so about the current music business as we know it). And, after last night’s post regarding payola in print, I sorta could use some optimism.
So, when I came across this post from the fantastic blog Open Culture in my RSS reader, I couldn’t resist. They’ve highlighted some of the 160 responses from scientests who were posed the question, “what are you optimistic about in 2007?”
Being an optimist myself, and a believer in the technological project, I was naturally drawn to this answer from Matt Ridley:
Matt Ridley – The Future
“The future. That’s what I’m optimistic about. The historian Macaulay said, in 1830: ‘We cannot absolutely prove that those are in error who tell us that society has reached a turning point, that we have seen our best days. But so said all who came before us and with just as much apparent reason.’ The eternal, enduring pessimism of human beings about the future does real harm by persuading people, especially the young, to retreat from adventure and enterprise into anomie. Sure, the world has problems: AIDS, Islamofascism, carbon dioxide. But I bet we can solve them as we have solved others, such as smallpox, the population explosion and the high price of whale oil.”
So, as I said, it’s off-topic, but, I think, applicable on some level to the business of music, and – if nothing else – sort of a nice reading experience.