Yesterday, I shared something with my accomplices inside the Brave Group. It won’t be public knowledge for months to come.
I make no secret of the fact that my newsletter is my favorite way to connect and communicate and that I share my best stuff there and not here on this blog. In fact, I’m thinking of taking down the RSS feed for this blog at some point. Not because I don’t want to interact with you. But because the blog is the fake storefront. This here? This is where Google sniffs around to see if I’m worthy.
What’s going on, though? The cool stuff? The real stuff? That’s happening in the secret lairs and hideouts.
My Prediction Was Kind of Close, But Wrong
I started telling people back in 2007 that what was coming next were “velvet rope social networks.” That there’d be very tight niche communities and that they’d be exclusionary and cater to very specific verticals. That didn’t exactly happen in any particularly large way.
But what did happen is that a huge economical pathway has shifted hard and opened up and the world of “lifestyle businesses” came into play, and Kickstarted and IndieGoGo and there are all kinds of other little passion economies are popping up and we are equipping ourselves to be as much or as little of the movement as we would like to be. There’s Square so we can be merchants and PayPal and we can be a band and throw micro concerts on StageIt. We can create books in PressBooks and publish them to Amazon and Barnes and wherever without really getting anyone’s permission.
You CAN Do It This Way, But It’ll Be Difficult
There is a parallel economy: the dispassionate economy and the passion-fueled economy. Though I’ve divided these, let’s understand that one isn’t better than the other. I can buy toilet paper at WalMart and not need to think about the passion behind the product. But where I do care about something, there’s now going to be a choice (there already is a choice) of someone who does it (whatever) with passion.
Record labels – dispassionate (profit first)
Kickstarter and Amanda Palmer – passionate (connect and rally)
Now, let’s accept that there are always exceptions. I know people in mainstream dispassionate economy corporations who are quite passionate. But I know absolutely zero people in passion-based economies who don’t love what they do with all their heart.
The Misfits are passionate (no, not the band, the revolution riding a Pegasus, silly. Keep up!). The Minimalists moved out to Missoula to make a publishing company. The empire builders and world dominators are ready, too!
Two Huge Requirements, Should You Choose to Build a Secret Lair and Start Your Own Visible Revolution
You need a bigger story (bigger than just you, a collaboration, a movement, a manifesto-worthy experience), and you need secret lairs and hideouts where you can talk with your secret team (a place where people feel that they belong, where they can share in the experience and not always as a customer, but definitely always as a co-conspirator, an accomplice, a collaborator.
My podcast is a rising secret network. I leave hidden messages for the faithful. I call them out by name. More and more, every episode, there’s the great value of the interview that I’ve conducted with fellow travelers, but the real magic? That’s the secret part of the show.
Oh and lair is not equal to clique and not equal to must-pay. Just make a place where you can interact with follow travelers, co-conspirators, those who feel what you feel. There’s a gathering element for all of us in the next little while, and we shall gather our little groups and find common passions to nurture.
Superheroes Have Secret Identities Sometimes
So maybe you still need the day job. Maybe you’ve not yet figured out all the bills. Health care costs a ton and to be without it can be terrible. Too many allies are in a rough bind right now because they work from their hearts and haven’t quite launched their own passion economy such that they can stay fed on that alone (yet!).
So fine. Do the day job. Work the work that you can right now. And that might well serve the dispassionate economy for now, but don’t let that get to you. It’s okay. Just don’t throw out the other part of this experience, this opportunity, this huge chance.
Because this invisible revolution is upon us. And you can stay beige or you can wear purple. It’s up to you to decide. And if you want to visit one of my secret lairs and talk with the collaborators, I give you many links above that will lead you there.
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