i’m known for being really random sometimes

i email people all the time who i don’t know and think, somehow, that they should listen to me.

it’s worked out really, really well a number of times:
• exhibit A: how i met Brad Corrigan
• exhibit B: how i worked with Mobium Creative Group
• exhibit C: many of my other clients who i attack without warning.

and today i emailed Iconoculture, self-defined as “Iconoculture, the leader in strategic consumer advisory services, delivers consumer understanding to marketing decision makers at F1000 companies, their agencies and advisors. Iconoculture enables business growth and innovation, using our unique observational research approach and translation capabilities of world-class researchers and strategists.”

and gave them a piece of my mind… they had written an article about a new Gen Y trend of War-Zone Tourism, suggesting “thrill-seekers are visiting areas, like Kosovo, with recent histories of conflict.” i took issue with the idea that this at all about the thrill – which i interpreted them to mean people go here mainly because it’s edgy and a good story to tell when they get back.

i hesitated to disagree with them so vehemently because i almost always like what they say, and only felt justified to do so because i feel like i know something about the subject ;)

of course you should read it. obviously i think everyone should.
i’m so full of s**t sometimes. but i do think i make a decent point.

the following is a response to your recent article about war-zone tourism; i think your article missed the point of such travels entirely.

there’s another facet to it than thrill-seeking, and this facet is an indicator to a deep distrust of the media and the history we were taught growing up. Gen X – and Gen Y even more than X – know that if you go to Vietnam, there is a Museum of War Remnants, formerly called the Museum of War Atrocities, that has Time Magazine photos deemed too grotesque for US audiences. it’s one such example of what’s held back from us.

i was there, and it had nothing to do with thrill seeking, it had to do with truth seeking. when i went after Vietnam to a killing field in Cambodia, it was to stand there and picture the humanity of it, the fear and disgust and just to harness that moment of wondering how humans can get to the point, physically, politically, and philosophically of killing on that scale – then the monks came running out and i learned that i had wandered into a live mine field.

it was not for the thrill – that’s what shark-diving in south africa was for – it’s about the first hand expression and exploration of a shared history we only received a watered-down part of.

it’s the expansion of our own boundaries and realizing how other people live – this is also evidenced by the “walking on water” movie in production by Aquafluence and groups like Elias Fund and Obangatek, the two latter being ways for high school and college kids to get involved with areas like Burma and Zimbabwe, respectively.

in summary, the other facet is self-education.

hopefully that all makes sense. i felt your article on the subject has a sensationalist bend to it and i hope this helps broaden your perception of the trend.

I’ve been a subscriber of your newsletter for some time and enjoy it immensely, which is what prompted me to share my views on the subject.

thanks for your time – –


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