Saturday, September 28, 2013

Wondering about Being Linked In...


I was updating all of my social networking accounts, when I got to my LinkedIn account. I literally laughed in derision at my profile, which I’d put together some years ago. I’d modified it here and there after this current journey of breaking free of the cage of selling my labor to an institution. Looking at the profile now, I could see how I'd bought into this ridiculous notion of "selling yourself." I've done a lot of thinking over the years about commodification and this all just screamed COMMODIFICATION OF LABOR at me. It was quite a strong reaction and I knew I needed to capture that energy, so I recorded myself ranting about it. This became my debut episode for my video blog Journey of a Lifetime (follow link below to watch the episode “Are You In?”)

Since recording the video, I've solidified my thoughts and can more clearly articulate what felt at the time, but I'm happy with the video because it captures a kind of raw, visceral reaction. There's a kind of aliveness that comes through, even though my thoughts weren't as organized about it then as they are now. Other videos I do will be more planned, but I like that you can see something of my incredulity at this website and their blatant ethos of commodification, even in the blog that they have on their site.
This commodification of self, to me, is one way that we allow other people to tell us who we are and avoid or fear discovering who we really are. You might say we are modulating or attenuating ourselves to give our self a higher value on the job market.There an inherent disingenuousness about it. Marx argued that commodification of labor leads to alienation, and in particular to alienation from oneself. That, in my mind, is a key component to the kinds of unhappiness you see, of people forcing themselves to go to a cube every day despite the fact that they hate it and are miserable. It's something of a quintessential opposite of what I want to promote, and it was great to have such a thing as LinkedIn open up a dialog on what it means to live ones life fully.