It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.


Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.


Evolution of a Topic...Origin of Concern

page: 1

log in


posted on Jul, 28 2010 @ 05:09 AM
I would like to explore the life cycle of concern and the Hot Topic. This is strictly based on my own synicism and skepticism and observation. However, I would like to challenge each of you to contribute your own points to this, be they supportive or against. To truly understand a thing is to research and debate the nature of the thing. So, without further gab and fluff...

What makes a topic "hot"?

On the news and on the net and in general conversation, there is always both the obvious topic of the day and the elephant in the room. In general, the "hot topic" garners the most attention. But what makes any one topic of discussion more prevalent than another? In any good conversation on the state of affairs or "goings on", there is always one issue that stands out as the one that everyone is talking about and everyone knows a little something about. There are always people leaning in with some level of factoid or opinion and others that listen intently to learn and will at times pick a train of thought and ride it out.
Is it based on the news? Certainly the mainstream media does not have such a focused and powerful control over mankind that they can steer the very thoughts and actions of so many at a single point in time. The MSM first have to pick a topic to become their focal point, then dissimenate that to the masses. Where do they get their "hot" topic rating from? In modern times, perhaps it is the internet. But surely such a broadsword of mass information covering every single thought of every person on the planet does not have the power to tick and tock the hands to high noon on a single topic, no matter its width and breadth.
So, what makes a topic hot? Perhaps in the locality of the individual, what directly affects them in the here and now is what they are most concerned with and what they make the most noise about. Perhaps in some regional rating system somewhere, we all contribute by our very simple concern over tit and tat and others use that to capitalize on a moment to draw in those that are not yet ready to commit to absolutes over the importance of a moment.

This begs the question, then, how can there be so many hot topics from so many genres of thought and how is one to deal with them all?
The average person can probably deal with about four imposing ideals at a single time. In any given conversation, it could steer in about that many directions before loosing all symbolence of the original or cohesive thought. So, with so many things going on in the world, why does everything seem to be such a hot topic?
Lets take modern times and bring up just four randomly chosen (and by no means ranked) issues of the day (note, I am from the US, so they may be skewed and I apologize to the rest of the world). US Border Security, Pending conflict with Iran, Goldman Sachs Bailout, BP Oil Spill.
In the US, people from all over the world have been coming to this country both legally and illegally. Illegals come from everywhere, but currently, the greatest concern is from Mexico. Why? They are not doing anything now that hasnt been happening for decades. What makes this a hot topic today? What puts this in the forefront of so many that they should be calling for such drastic actions now? They have been smuggling, raping, killing and stealing since the late 70s. While there has always been some offhanded concern, jokes about "fill with oil and set it on fire", there has not been this level of defensiveness that was born in the last few years and most importantly, in the last few months. So, what about it makes it a hot topic.
Iran has been in conflict with people for most of their existence. It goes back to biblical times. Yet, for some reason, since the fall of Babylon, you just hear snippets of talk about the constant fighting in and around Iran. So, they want a Nuclear Energy source and now they are the enemy of the world. They control too much oil, so they must be incorporated into the fold of sheep that follow the few masters. Iran has always been an oil mecca and has always sought to keep up with technology and the world at large. Why are they now the hot button item on the list? What makes this new day any more or less important than yester-year?

I am sure you see where I am going with my diatribe and you all have just as much information access to the listed and more topix, so I will not continue that train of thought.

What purpose is served by putting an issue on a pedestal? If you ask any rational thinker, you would probably get an answer such as, all things of concern should be discussed at length and with equal vigor and the search for unity and truth should be the goal. However, when you pedestal a topic, you crown it for its moment and other equally important topix are left to wander about the minds of the few and risk being lost on the many. Again, as normal people can only handle so much information at a time, what point is served by saying one thing is more important than another. Doesnt that limit the scope and evolution of thought? Should not the many be more concerned with the expansion of the mind and its ability to grow and take in more and more information so that many more subjects can be considered at once? Limitations are only the restrictions you are taught to believe exist by those that are too afraid to reach for something greater.

Why is the lifecycle of a hot topic often times akin to a super nova? When a topic reaches its epic proportion, it tends to burn very hot, but for a very short time, until it implodes upon itself and all that remains is the shattered and fading memory of the light it emitted. Should not something that was once so important as to gain such star quality status be something well worth keeping in the forefront of conversation? To let such a topic fade to black is to forget its existence and a failure to learn the lesson it was born to teach.
In so many conversations about the BP Oil spill, it is all too often that people forget that this is not a rare occurence. The world over, oil is being gushed up out of the ground, either by Mother Earth or by the clumsiness and ineptitude of man. However, since only that which truly makes headlines and news is what the people think they know as fact, the simple truth is overlooked. When a major volcano erupts and the ash and lava threatens a town, it is often overlooked that this has happened thousands of times over and in most cases has been epically worse throughout history. Pompeii is just one of the most major examples, but so are the Hawaiian Islands. One is decimated while another is born. However, when a puff of smoke comes from a volcano, its as if it is being seen for the first time and the topic must burn like an out of control wild fire.

"Here lies Topic, once hot and beloved, now tragically lost to annuls of time".
This is the eventuallity of all topics of any magnitude. To be shelved from light, often times to lay dormant for a generation or more, taking solace in the fact that once, it was important, but now just a memory. Its life cycle is that of any life cycle. It is to be born with dramatic entry, grow through thunderous voice, idle in the minds of the few and lay wasted in the sands of time.

Tragedy strikes this world everyday. As certain as the sun will shine, there will be one thought to lord over the many. One single issue that claws its way through mayhem or pleasure, to the peak of its existence, only to topple like a sand castle in the waves. Unsung are the lessons and topix of yesterday. Today, there is a new topic to discuss. Tomorrow, there will be more. In time, a topic will be a distant relative of its origin, born to be discussed by a new generation of thinkers with new ideas. While the high matriarch sits alone in the dark, its spawn see the light of day.

To burn so hot, to lay so be the hot topic.

posted on Jul, 28 2010 @ 06:46 AM
reply to post by wheresthetruth

as much as you notice people talking about hot topics, theres as many people, if not more, who arent.
you arr interested in them, so you will pick up on others talking aboutt it.
once people notice it everywhere, do they typically pay attention to it.
concern comes from the heightened awareness in the subconscious, brought on with an accumulation of the consensus of those around them. you have to understand a concern is there before someone realizes they should be concerned.

posted on Jul, 28 2010 @ 01:53 PM

Originally posted by Myendica
reply to post by wheresthetruth

you have to understand a concern is there before someone realizes they should be concerned.

And that is the premise of my write up. The very fact that issues that should concern people are always ever present and should be investigated, yet all too often go unnoticed under the weight of the topic at hand.
I guess a follow up query would be why should the tunnel be so narrow. Its the old adage of not seeing the forrest for the trees. The things in this world that directly and indirectly affect and steer mankind and shape their destiny are not always allied with mankinds best interest. All too often the ones piloting this ship look out into the ocean and still fail to see the iceburg in their path. In this case, more often than not it is not the captains going down with the ships.
As it is with top discussion, those that would steer a discussion into a narrowed tunnel of thought influence people to also narrow their own thinking and overlook equally important and often directly linked issues of the time.

Perhaps I am asking too much of my fellow man, but when I look into the mirror and ask myself what I have learned today, I always hope there is more than just one answer coming back. When I look at my life in its twilight, I want to know that I did not forget the lessons of yesterday just to feel comfortable about how I dealt with today.

Maintaining a broad and fully encompassing field of learning and remembering the topics that were and how they have shaped the topics that are is a goal.


log in